Ex-assistant coach says Joe Paterno criticized Penn State administration
Longtime Penn State football coach Joe Paterno said the university mishandled its response to the Jerry Sandusky child sex-abuse scandal, a former assistant coach testified during a hearing for three top school officials accused of a cover-up.
The Associated Press
HARRISBURG, Pa. – Longtime Penn State coach Joe Paterno said the university mishandled its response to the Jerry Sandusky child sex-abuse scandal, a former assistant coach testified Monday during a hearing for three top school officials accused of a cover-up.
Star witness Mike McQueary appeared in a courtroom for the third time since Sandusky’s November 2011 arrest and told the court top school officials knew he had seen Sandusky molesting a boy in a locker-room shower on campus.
The ex-Penn State assistant coach and quarterback also delivered some unexpected testimony: that the late Hall of Fame coach had told him over the years “Old Main screwed up” — referring to university administrators — in how it responded to McQueary’s allegation against Sandusky.
Pressed by defense lawyers about his discussions, McQueary brought up a specific exchange at practice in the hours before Paterno’s firing Nov. 9, 2011 — four days after Sandusky’s arrest.
McQueary recalled Paterno saying the school would try to make McQueary a scapegoat. Paterno also advised him not to trust the administration or then-university counsel Cynthia Baldwin, the former assistant testified.
Former Penn State president Graham Spanier, retired university vice president Gary Schultz and ex-athletic director Tim Curley are accused of failing to tell police about a sexual-abuse allegation involving Sandusky and then trying to cover up what they knew. The men say they are not guilty.
Paterno died in January 2012. He has not been charged, though former FBI director Louis Freeh said in a university-sanctioned report Paterno conspired with the three school officials to conceal accusations against Sandusky. Paterno’s family has vehemently denied those allegations.