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Paterno defended by his son in new book

HARRISBURG, Pa. — Former Penn State football coach Joe Paterno told his son the day after his November 2011 firing that he hadn't informed the coaching staff about allegations Jerry Sandusky might be a child molester because he was unsure if they were true, Jay Paterno writes in a new book.

In Paterno Legacy: Enduring Lessons from the Life and Death of My Father, released last week, Jay Paterno writes his father said he didn't want to accuse somebody of something he didn't witness or know to be true.

"I didn't know that he'd done all that stuff," Joe Paterno told his son, according to the book. "I had no idea. I just didn't know."

Jay Paterno, who abandoned a candidacy for lieutenant governor before this year's Democratic primary after his nominating petitions were challenged, is involved in two lawsuits in which Penn State is the defendant.

"I am not writing to exonerate my father because he did not commit a crime that needs a pardon," he wrote of Joe Paterno, who died soon after his firing. "If anything, he is guilty of failing to possess the God-like qualities ascribed to him by others, qualities that Joe was the first to insist he never had."

Joe Paterno's firing and a subsequent decision to remove his statue from outside the stadium remain controversial among Penn State alumni and fans. Jay Paterno describes the trustees in bitter terms, saying they were just trying to save themselves.

"The firing was an act of cowardice," he wrote. "End of story."

More Penn St.: Sandy Barbour, who spent the past 10 years as Cal's athletic director, was hired for the same job. She replaces David Joyner, who resigned last month. Joyner took over in the wake of the Sandusky scandal and held the job for 21/2 years.

Georgia: Backup linebacker Davin Bellamy was arrested on charges of DUI and speeding early Saturday morning in Athens, Ga. Details of the incident were not available. The redshirt freshman, who posted a $2,000 bond, is the school's fifth defensive player to be arrested during this offseason. School officials were not available for comment. But the student-athlete handbook stipulates athletes charged with DUI miss 20 percent of the team's season. That would be at least two games.

Tampa: Women's basketball coach Tom Jessee was inducted into the Bluefield State (W.Va.) Hall of Fame on Friday. In nine seasons at his alma mater (1988-97), he went 170-89.

Paterno defended by his son in new book 07/26/14 [Last modified: Saturday, July 26, 2014 7:03pm]
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