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Jay Paterno, Phil Knight, Todd Blackledge and others honor Paterno at memorial

Penn State Paterno Football AP

The public memorial for former Penn State coach Joe Paterno wrapped up a little while ago, extending over two hours at the Bryce Jordan Center.

Among the numerous speakers at the memorial that spanned Paterno’s five decades as a coach were former players — Charlie Pittman representing the 1960’s, Jimmy Cefalo representing the 1970’s, Todd Blackledge representing the 19080’s, Christian Marrone representing 1990’s, Michael Robinson representing the 2000’s and Michael Mauti representing the current team — Nike co-founder Phil Knight and son Jay Paterno.

“Up until today I considered being the quarterback of that 82 national championship team, Joe’s first, to be the greatest honor of my life,” Blackledge said. “Today that has been replaced.”

The former players told stories of Paterno’s “team first” mentality, or how the life lessons the coach preached began to make sense after they played their final down for the Nittany Lions.

“Joseph Vincent Paterno was a great football coach. But his life can never, ever be measured by wins and championships because to do so would be a great injustice,” Marrone, a former Assistant Secretary of Defense, said at the conclusion of his speech.

Others cracked jokes and did their best Paterno impersonation.

“Hey your dad used to act like he was tough, too, trying to fight people all the time,” Mauti said Paterno told him after Mauti got in a fight during practice.

But all those who spoke had a common theme: to them, Paterno stood for honesty.

“He taught us how to compete with honor, how to compete with integrity,” Blackledge said.

Robinson echoed that sentiment.

“He didn’t lie to me. He didn’t lie to me at all.”

The honor and integrity Paterno preached for decades has come into question in recent months with the Jerry Sandusky scandal, with some believing that Paterno did not capitalize on an opportunity to do more than what was legally required of him. Poking the coals of Paterno’s role in the controversy was Knight, who said very strongly “There is a villain in this tragedy, it lies in that investigation. Not in Joe Paterno’s response.

“Who is the real trustee at Penn State University?”

Those words received one of the loudest ovations of the day.

But the stir of the Sandusky scandal was temporary; the memorial concluded with an eloquent speech by Jay Paterno.

“Among the things he accomplished in his life, it was the games he won that counted the least,” Jay Paterno explained. “The smallest acts of a father, a coach, a mentor can echo across decades.”

Jay said the last words to his father were “Dad, you won. You did all you could do. You’ve done enough. We all love you. You won. You can go home now.”

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31 Responses to “Jay Paterno, Phil Knight, Todd Blackledge and others honor Paterno at memorial”
  1. eagleswineagleswin says: Jan 26, 2012 5:21 PM

    Phils Knight should have pissed on that child abuse enablers coffin.

  2. bigd88 says: Jan 26, 2012 5:24 PM

    Phil Knight was AWESOME

  3. Alohamrhand says: Jan 26, 2012 5:38 PM

    it was a moving and touching ceremony.Rest in peace Joe Pa.

  4. firedude7160 says: Jan 26, 2012 5:44 PM

    Phil Knight’s speech was very unexpected, but amazing. It was obvious he was very close with JoePa. I was also very impressed with Michael Robinson’s speach. He made some very bold statements about JoePa’s character, and almost seemed to be calling out some other coaches that recruited him.

  5. bozosforall says: Jan 26, 2012 6:51 PM

    “Who is the real trustee at Penn State University?”

    Surely NOT any of the 32 cowards that claim to be. Fire all of those simpering weasels NOW.

    RIP JoePa.

  6. mznc24 says: Jan 26, 2012 6:51 PM

    Eagleswine. You are a typical Philly moron

  7. gripless says: Jan 26, 2012 6:52 PM

    Hey eagleswineagleswin:

    Too bad we can’t piss on your coffin.

    The only problem is if your comments are indiciative of your personality, there will be nobody at your funeral!

  8. thraiderskin says: Jan 26, 2012 7:01 PM

    Damn fine eulogy…

  9. fissels says: Jan 26, 2012 7:35 PM

    Awesome memorial, I was choked up the entire time

  10. eagleswineagleswin says: Jan 26, 2012 7:50 PM

    You should all be ashamed. Joe Paterno contributed to the molesting of children by not doing anything but reporting a crime to his superiors. Its crime so you go to the police you old fool. Enjoy your time in hell and plan on seeing Sandusky soon.

    Joe Paterno: Patron saint of blind loyalty.

    Presidents who die do not get as much coverage of their funeral as this old dirt bag

  11. ogre2010 says: Jan 26, 2012 8:13 PM

    I’m looking forward to hearing the truth when it’s all over!!

  12. ogre2010 says: Jan 26, 2012 8:13 PM

    I’m looking forward to hearing the truth when it’s all over!!

  13. inconsonance says: Jan 26, 2012 8:14 PM

    eagleswineagleswin, does it somehow make you feel better about your own pathetic existence and the likelihood that you’ll die alone under a bridge somewhere when you make uninspired, trite comments about a dead man who accomplished more in any one, randomly chosen day from his life than you’ll accomplish in the entirety of yours?

  14. eagleswineagleswin says: Jan 26, 2012 8:40 PM

    Inconsonance…. I am sure you would feel that way if it was your son in the shower with Sandusky and Paterno did not go to the police. Bottom line is he did hardly anything when a he knew a kid was raped. I hope your not a parent.

  15. eagleswineagleswin says: Jan 26, 2012 8:42 PM

    Does anyone know what Joe Pa would be doing if he was a live right now?

    Scratching like hell at the roof of a pine box!

  16. dominator71030 says: Jan 26, 2012 8:52 PM


    You do not know what Mcqeary reported to JoePa. It could be anything from a lot to very little. There are reeports where Mcqeary said that it was horsing around. Mcqeary should have went to the cops since he saw it. If JoePa went to the cops then the defense for Sandusky might have said how the claim is not good enough since JoePa didnt witness it and the trial may have been dropped.

  17. Kave Krew says: Jan 26, 2012 8:57 PM

    In a twist of irony, the weather at State College Pa on the last day of Joe Pa above ground was a day of showers…….

    Showers? Why not rain? I am confused by that…..oh well, i’ll just ignore it and maybe it will go away…..

  18. frank booth says: Jan 26, 2012 9:10 PM

    Jerry Sandusky- violates children
    Joe Paterno- violates sensibilities
    Phil Knight- violates child labor laws

  19. blacksabbathrulesall says: Jan 26, 2012 9:19 PM

    What exactly have the Eagles won?
    2 time Superbowl LOSERS!!
    Multiple NFC Championship LOSERS!!!!
    But yet you have a convicted killer on your roster but yet you run your yap.
    Typical Filthadelphian!!!

    R.I.P. JoePa!!!!

  20. xphase says: Jan 26, 2012 9:50 PM

    eagleswineagleswin you brought up presidents, I love how idiots like u and some in the media want to try to vilify a man of great integrity like Joepa while turning a blind eye to no good liars like our president. If he was dissected with such vigor as Joepa has by some, that commy would have been impeached by now.

    RIP Joepa

  21. kennypowersmfceo says: Jan 26, 2012 9:58 PM

    Hey look its my old friend hallandoats#1 ……. Didn’t expect you to be posting on a college football topic…..guess you must be bored since ya can’t wank to your penguins until the break is over

  22. webfootdoug58 says: Jan 27, 2012 2:37 AM

    Come on folks, calm down. Show a little respect here.
    You’re turning a memorial to a great football coach in to a barroom brawl. Leave it to Phil Knight to rub the raw wound on a very emotional day.

    @eagleswin, that was a crude and nasty remark at a time like this and totally loses any worthwhile point you might be trying to make about the serious issue of sexual abuse;
    @phase, I never expected to see such an ugly political crack on CFT, leave that for the talk shows.

    Can’t we all just stop and remember what a great coach and leader Paterno was, while admitting that he, like all of us, had his human failing too?

  23. gmc173 says: Jan 27, 2012 2:38 AM

    eagleswineagleswin you are a f***ing idiot. I am from Philly and it makes me sad that u have that name but anyways.

    JoePa: Went to his superiors. One of those overseas the Campus Police… o which by the way has the same authority as the local police vs the state police here in PA.

    eagleswineagleswin: Please tell me what you would have done? Have you been in that situation? O by the way ask your grand parent what they would have done as well.

    So how about you do the following:

    Improve 10% of the lives JoePa did…. then make comments about him being a pedophile….. OR you realize that SANDUSKY is the villian…. not JOEPA.

    I know that wont happen because you are most likely the stereotypical thick skulled Philly fan that gives Philly fan a bad name.

    So how about you just F**K off and stop commenting on everything Penn State or Paterno until you can think of an original thought that is not derived from the media.

    Otherwise….. just F*ck OFF

  24. blacksabbathrulesall says: Jan 27, 2012 3:15 AM

    kennypowersmfceo says: Jan 26, 2012 9:58 PM

    Hey look its my old friend hallandoats#1 ……. Didn’t expect you to be posting on a college football topic…..guess you must be bored since ya can’t wank to your penguins until the break is over.

    Hey it’s the giant used tampon kennypowers.
    I wouldn’t piss on you if you were on fire “friend”
    Glad to see you don’t have anything to offer on any of these websites.
    Did mom and dad go to sleep so you could sneak out of your bedroom to get on the computer?

  25. kandh2004 says: Jan 27, 2012 3:26 AM

    Let’s not say are Philadelphians are like the scumbag Eagleswin. I’m from Philly and I don’t in no way feel like he does

    RIP JoePA

  26. blueglaze says: Jan 27, 2012 6:46 AM

    Eagleswin doesn’t realize that a thesaurus won’t help your comments make a lick of sense…. Change the record dude.

  27. toegoat says: Jan 27, 2012 8:11 AM

    “Todd Blackledge representing the 19080′s”
    Damn! Paterno really did live a LONG time!

  28. takingbovadasmoney says: Jan 27, 2012 8:27 AM

    Is it any wonder Phil Knight a man who made his empire on the backs of 8 year old asians making. 05 cents an hour would commend Paterno’s inaction.

    Moral midgets. To each their own.

  29. latrobe21 says: Jan 27, 2012 8:54 AM

    Thank you, Phil Knight! Your comments were very much appreciated. Everyone who spoke did a great job, but I particularly enjoyed the content of Jimmy Cefalo’s speech. He does a great job on the Dolphins’ radio network, as well.

    PSU Nation must not let this current groundswell in support of the BOT, Erikson and Joyner being replaced asap fade away. It’s very sad that they were alleged leaders of our university. Resign today, you cowards.

  30. tobeexact says: Jan 27, 2012 10:29 AM


    You are a sorry excuse of a man, you probably cheered when they eagles signed vick and praised him for being a dog murderer. You also probably think andy reed is a great father who both of his sons are criminals.
    And before you run your mouth , read up on the laws regarding the reporting of child molestation,it clearly states that you can not report it ,if its second hand news and states due to moral obligations .
    Second im from outside philly and am a dad and a die hard penn state fan and a joe pa fan and will not waiver just because of idiots like you with no facts that want to talk out your ass. Unlike the Bots who actually knew more then joe pa and recently admitted to the fact they were aware of 3 grand jury investigations and since no charges were brought against sandusky they didn’t bother to follow up nor asks wisdoms. Yet they chose to crumble under pressure and use joe pa, a prominate figure head as a scape goat in the hopes it would satisfy media scum bags like espn.
    Instead they should have done what syracuse did and stick by there people and bash the media for putting out a story which was based on pure speculation to try and boost there declining ratings and viewer ship .
    And for you in happy valley which I have been to on many an occasion for football games , please do not group people from philadelphia into the eagleswin dudes category , penn state is a great university and town with alot of class and fanatic students who are courteous to visitors and even during pre game partying and tail gating are at there best behavior. Thats why so many generations of penn state fans are not afraid to bring there young kids or grand kids to football games.
    RIP joe pa and to all the penn state family you deserve to be able to mourne in peace without a holes like eagleswin putting their worthless words on a blog.

  31. tobeexact says: Jan 27, 2012 11:49 AM

    @bamarollbama blog on SB,

    Yes bear was a great coach and a football icon and even myself as a penn state fan idolize the man .
    But obviously you let morons from alabama post on your blog without deleting them when they try to bash a great football coach and a great man in joe pa at a time when his family is trying to deal with their loss .
    Its especially aimed at the idiot that tried to say joe pa and penn state football were sub par in winning two national championships and that because they were not tied to a conference at the time that they only played patsies.
    Well shortly after he took over as a head coach they went on a 30 plus game winning streak , when they only played 8 games ,so thats almost four years without a loss. He also holds the record for most bowl appearances and wins and guess what , most of those bowl wins were against sec teams along with big twelve and pac ten teams .
    Then the guy tried to say when they entered the big ten that changed , well they also went undefeated in the big ten and won the rose bowl that year only to lose the national title to.nebraska who jumped them in the polls after penn state whooped on a top ten rated ohio st. and nebraska barely best a nobody ,n guess what coach voted for nebraska ,jim slim ball tressel. Then you can go back during the past 7 years and they had a few 12&1 seasons and were ripped off.twice by the refs against michigan and once against ohio st which stopped them from going undefeated and a shot at 3 more national championships. Lets see, football you only need one foot in bounds, against michigan a penn state receiver clearly had two feet in bounds and a ref standing two feet away ruled him out of bounds which would have set up the winning field goal try ,oh by the way that was the same game that at half time , michigan retired the refs jersey to there stadium wall of greats .
    Then there is the game where penn states defense successfully stopped michigan on a fourth and goal and time clearly expired ,yet after crying for about 15 minuets the michigan coach convinced the refs to put one second back on the clock and we lost ,yes the big cry baby loyd carr.
    And everyone in the world and especially all the other teams in the big ten know that ohio st and michigan are there favorite pets and do everything possible to keep them at the top, and to prove my point ,its been recently stated by sports writers that its about time the big tens best two football teams are getting back to the top.
    And even ron zook from yes the sec in his first year as illusions head coach publicly complained about ohio st and michigan getting every single call .
    Then the blogger went onto say joe pa should have retired during a few losing seasons that were chalk full of injuries should have retired , well again penn state starting in 2006 until present has the 6th best winning percentage among major fbs schools.
    Then he went on to bash him , saying he wasnt a great coach or a great man and he protected a molester or should have done more. Well I can stoop to the same level and state neither was bear bryant and that he was a racist pig and definitely should have known at the time about segregation and that if he was such a great man he would have , should have done more to stop it,so dont run your mouth about joe pa or penn state. Maybe you should take your racist self to the library and read up on the laws about reporting second hand info on child molestation.
    And lets compare all the great sec schools graduation rate among athletes and especially black athletes to that of penn straw and lets get into ncaa major violations among sec schools and big ten schools ,do you really want to compare.
    I opolgize to the majority of alabama fans and alumni ,but im tired of listening to morons like that blogger trashing a grey man ,a great coach and a great university, and the bottom part of my blog was only meant to prove a point , and that its easy to say what ever you want true or not , just because you have some serious mental issues like (theobnoxiousguy) who goes on every blog and bashes people schools , everything. Yes even alabama going to the national championship , who knows maybe he blogs under many different names. If I ran a blog or a school paper I would not allow sometime like that to post on it and regardless of freedom of speach I would have to have certain rules to certain subjects like joe pa and his memorial or just plain respect for the family and the deceased.

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