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article imageOp-Ed: Joe Paterno begins chemo amid worry over sexual-abuse victims

By Nancy Houser     Nov 19, 2011 in Sports
State College - After coaching for 46 years at Penn State, 84-year-old Joe Paterno received a call telling him he has lung cancer. This occurred right after Paterno was forcibly phone-fired from Penn State and before Penn State lost their football game 17-14 to Nebraska.
As more and more of the Sandusky sexual scandal unfolds, the grueling allegations and mounting number of victims may cause more damage to Joe Paterno's health than the chemotherapy treatments he will begin this week .
According to Jay Paterno, an assistant coach at Penn State, when his father was notified of the Jerry Sandusky incident, Paterno's former assistant Sandusky had already retired in 1999 from Penn State. Jay said very few staff at Penn State were involved with Sandusky after he left, and most did not hear of the scandal until quite later. He said his parents were very concerned and upset over the sexually-abused victims, with Joe admitting he should have done more than simply inform his superior, even though he stated he had not been told it was forcible rape.
Without saying it aloud, the scapegoat firing of Coach Paterno may have been an easy step to appease the public by the Penn State board, at least until more information was gathered. ESPN reports that Harrisburg attorney Ben Andreozzi, who specializes in sexual abuse cases, believes that the university trustees did not consult with any of the victims before replacing Paterno. This caused a massive uproar downtown when angry students protested in support of the coach and tipped over a news van.
For close to half a century, Joe Paterno was a coach whose morals were superior and unquestionable, in addition to being a Hall of Fame coach. This has caused many questions why Paterno as head coach was removed, yet McQueary is still employed. With so many threats against him, McQueary was placed on administration leave.
"Coaches have the same obligation as all teachers. Except that we may have more moral and life-shaping influence over our players than anyone else outside of their families." (Time. 1989 biography "Paterno: by the Book)
In August of 2004, the NY Times Blog has McQueary stating "he has aspirations of one day becoming a head coach, hopefully at Penn State---'but Joe will probably outlive me.' "
Driven by media frenzy and sensationalism, the Penn State scandal is being pressed forward by the public because of the young boys who have been sexually brutalized. Heads need to roll, and the cancer-stricken Coach Paterno's head was chosen by the drawing of straws. He may have done what was legally correct, but his morals were questioned because he did not go any further with the case against Sandusky.
However, McQueary said he had notified the police and certain individuals. Yet, there are no records available of such claims. And, McQueary still has a job.
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of
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