Joe Paterno Was a Selfish Liar

Sally Jenkins says the football coach cared more about his legacy than kids
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 13, 2012 1:44 PM CDT
Joe Paterno Was a Selfish Liar
A statue of Joe Paterno is seen outside Beaver Stadium in State College, Pa., July 12, 2012.   (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)

There's no longer any room for doubt: "Joe Paterno was a liar," writes Sally Jenkins of the Washington Post, who was the last to interview Paterno before his death. How, she had asked, could he not have known about the 1998 grand jury investigation into Sandusky? "Nobody knew," he said. "I never heard a thing." But everybody knew, and Paterno heard everything, according to the Freeh Report, and it has emails to back up its case.

The report does say that Paterno genuinely believed there was no evidence of a crime, and he "can be forgiven for … refusing to believe his colleague was a child molester in '98," Jenkins writes. "What's not forgivable is his sustained determination to lie from 2001 onward." Paterno even perjured himself before a grand jury. There's only one explanation: "He was more interested in protecting a cardboard cutout legacy than the flesh and blood of young men." (More Joe Paterno stories.)

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