Jay Paterno resigns after meeting with new coach Bill O'Brien
"I will not be a part of the Penn State football staff moving forward," he says
His father, the legendary "JoePa," was fired amid sex abuse scandal in November
Penn State quarterbacks coach Jay Paterno says he has resigned from the university’s embattled football program after meeting with the school’s new coach.
Jay Paterno’s resignation comes two months after his father, legendary head coach Joe Paterno, was fired over the sexual abuse scandal that erupted in November. Penn State named New England Patriots offensive coordinator Bill O’Brien to replace the elder Paterno last week.
“After talking with Coach Bill O’Brien, we have reached the conclusion that I will not be a part of the Penn State football staff moving forward,” Jay Paterno said in a written statement. “I will spend the next few weeks consulting with my wife and family to weigh various future options both inside and outside of football.”
Penn State has been rocked by accusations that former defensive coordinator Jerry Sandusky had sexually abused young boys over a 14-year period – and that school officials failed to take complaints about Sandusky to police. University trustees fired the elder Paterno and school President Graham Spanier after a grand jury report on the case in November.
In his statement, Jay Paterno thanked Penn State students and fans for their support “over the past seventeen seasons and in particular the past two months.”
“Through the tumult of the past several weeks, it has been your stalwart support combined with life lessons learned from Joe Paterno that has and continue to sustain us,” he said.
In November, the younger Paterno said that while his world turned “upside down” when the scandal erupted, “We’ve got to make sure we keep focus on the victims of this whole tragedy.”
The scandal unraveled after a grand jury report accused Sandusky of more than 50 counts of sexually abusing boys. Sandusky has pleaded not guilty to the charges.
A Penn State graduate assistant, Mike McQueary, told the grand jury that he had seen Sandusky raping a boy in a Penn State locker room in 2002 and that he had gone to Paterno with what he saw.
Paterno said he’d never been told the graphic details revealed in a grand jury report, but that he nevertheless passed the allegations on to his boss. After first saying he had done “what I was supposed to do,” the elder Paterno said that “with the benefit of hindsight, I wish I had done more.” He was fired November 9.
It was years before law enforcement learned about the allegation. Then-Athletic Director Tim Curley and Gary Schultz, a university vice president who oversaw campus police, now face charges of perjury and failing to report child sexual abuse.