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“I have come to work every day for the last 61 years with one clear goal in mind: to serve the best interests of this university and the young men who have been entrusted to my care,” Joe Paterno said. Late Wednesday evening school officials fired the coach, made effective immediately.

Despite the hundreds of students that swarmed his door step to show support of him the night before, the beloved Penn State football coach announced his plans to retire at the end of the season. Paterno, 84, is stepping down from a 46-season career that has afforded him a record breaking 409 wins and two championships in 1984 and ’86.

This decision comes after Paterno was criticized by the Pennsylvania State Commissioner in failing to further seek justice in a child abuse scandal involving assistant coach, Jerry Sandusky that has shocked the nation. Paterno is both apologetic and takes responsibility for the scandal exceeding almost a decade after he initially reported it to his superiors back in 2002.

“This is a tragedy,”…”It’s one the great sorrows of my life. With the benefit of hindsight, I wish I had done more.”

The decision to retire saddens the Penn State football team, students and community. The question now is will Joe Paterno’s historic accolades be overshadowed and reputation tarnished by this horrific child abuse scandal.

Source USA Today

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