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EXPLAINED Penn State: Paterno Failed as Leader Matt Rourke / AP Photo

Penn State: Paterno Failed as Leader

While alumni and students continue to criticize Penn State for the firing of legendary football coach Joe Paterno last fall, trustees at Penn State released a statement Monday attributing his dismissal to “failure of leadership.” The coach who led the Nittany Lions for more than 45 years fell short when he chose to do only his “minimum legal duty” after an employee claimed that assistant coach Jerry Sandusky raped a young boy in a shower. The university’s board of trustees has explained on multiple previous occasions its rationale for firing Paterno, prompting the late coach’s family to release a statement through their lawyer saying they were disappointed by the board’s decision to explain again why Paterno was fired “so suddenly and unjustifiably.” Paterno died in January due to complications from lung cancer at the age of 85.

March 12, 2012 6:52 PM