Miami coach Al Golden, who played for Paterno from 1989-91 and coached under him in 2000, released a statement Monday about what he gained from his relationship with the long-time coach.
“Walter Payton once said, ‘Always remember that every opportunity you have to meet someone is an opportunity to leave a piece of yourself,’
“Joe Paterno, not only fulfilled a promise he made to his father by making an impact, he left an indelible piece of himself with everyone in his life. The values Coach Paterno instilled in each of us that were fortunate enough to play for or work alongside him will never be diminished.
“They are manifested in our leadership, character, class and dedication to improving the lives of others in the classroom, workforce and community. They are distinctly evident in the way we raise our children and the type of husbands and fathers we have grown to be.
“I am forever grateful for the impact that Joseph Vincent Paterno has made on my life. I am not ashamed to say to Coach and his family that the way all of your former players will carry your legacy forward is by humbly improving the lives of those around us every day.
“Thank you Joe!”
(Tip of the cap: South Florida Sun Sentinel)