Paterno decided to retire at age 84, in the middle of his 46th season with the Nittany Lions. He won 409 games, a record for major college football, but now, the grandfatherly coach known as “Joe Pa,” who had painstakingly burnished a reputation for winning “the right way,” leaves the only school he’s ever coached in disgrace.
“I am absolutely devastated by the developments in this case,” he said. “I grieve for the children and their families, and I pray for their comfort and relief.”
But Paterno might not be able to execute his exit strategy as the school’s board of trustees is still considering its options, which could include forcing Paterno to leave immediately.