An Icon has Fallen: Joe Paterno fired over the phone

The Penn State Board of Trustee’s announced tonight that the school has fired head coach Joe Paterno. Paterno announced on Wednesday that he would retire after the season, but to no surprise the university’s board of trustees decided that Paterno would be fired and not allowed to continue as coach effective immediately. Defensive coordinator Tom Bradley has been named interim coach.
John Surma, the vice chair of the board of trustees said, “these decisions were made after careful deliberations and in the best interests of the university as a whole.”
Surma though was peppered with why fire Joe now and could not come up with a good answer, constantly saying that the move was in the “best interest of the school.”
Paterno’s retirement at seasons end had no bearing on the trustees decision and in the end, they didn’t want Joe to go out on his own terms and be a spectacle on Saturday.
There’s no denying that Penn State had to make this move but shouldn’t the school have had the guts to fire Paterno in person and not over the phone?
Saturday night will be the first football game since 1950 that Joe Paterno won’t be apart of Penn State’s coaching staff.
Meanwhile, President Graham Spanier was forced to resign and fired but Mike McQueary will remain on the team’s coaching staff.

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William DePaoli

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William DePaoli is the President/Founder of Inside Pittsburgh Sports LLC and can be reached at

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