Joe Paterno: Ex-Penn State Football Coach Dies at Age 85

Jacob BornContributor IIIJanuary 21, 2012

Reports surfaced Saturday evening that Joe Paterno passed away, and those reports were in fact false. Unfortunately, on Sunday morning, the early reports turned to be foreshadowing. Joe Paterno passed away early Sunday morning at the age of 85.

Even with a sex scandal in his program forcing him from the job, Joe Paterno was, and still is, the face of Penn State football. His legacy may be tarnished because of the scandal, which I believe ultimately started his health downturn beginning after his removal from the head coach position. 

According to ESPN, Joe Paterno  passed away as a result of complications from lung cancer. Paterno coached Penn State for 46 years before being forced out of his job. His removal was controversial not only because of him hiding the alleged sex scandal between Jerry Sandusky and teenage boys, but also in the manner that he was removed. But that should not take away from the example he set during his full career. Paterno will be remembered for the legacy he left with the Nittany Lions.

Throughout his 46-year career, Paterno set the standard for college football. He set the Division I record for most wins with 409. He also coached his way to two national championships and five undefeated seasons.

Joe Paterno will always be a legend and should be remembered as a class act. The world has lost a great coach, and the entire college football community will keep Joe Paterno and his entire family in their thoughts and prayers.