Wednesday, July 30th 2014

Paterno eager to tell his side of Sandusky story, son says

WASHINGTON | Mon Jan 9, 2012 1:36pm EST

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Former Penn State football coach Joe Paterno is eager to tell his side of the child sex abuse scandal that led to his firing, his son said.

Jay Paterno said that the sex abuse charges involving former assistant coach Jerry Sandusky have "almost been a runaway train" for their impact on his father, the university and its high-profile football program.

"There's nobody at Penn State anywhere that wouldn't wish ... that they couldn't have seen something and done something to stop any of this before any of it happened," Paterno, who was Penn State's quarterbacks coach, said in an ESPN interview carried on ABC television on Monday.

Sandusky, 67, faces 52 child molestation charges involving 10 young boys. He has denied any wrongdoing and is under house arrest.

Paterno, 85, and university President Graham Spanier were fired by trustees in November for failing to tell police what they knew about accusations involving Sandusky. Paterno has testified before a grand jury about the charges.

Paterno, a member of the College Football Hall of Fame, also is battling a treatable form of lung cancer. His son said the ailment was giving Paterno something to fight for.

"The cancer has provided him something where it's a constant fight. If there is a ridiculous silver lining in this cloud, it would be that," he said.

Penn State named New England Patriots offensive coordinator Bill O'Brien the new head coach on Friday. The Big 10 team ended the season with a 9-3 record, followed by a loss to Houston in the TicketCity Bowl.

(Reporting by Ian Simpson; Editing by Greg McCune)

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