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Paterno’s name taken off Nike child development center

Phil Knight AP

The distancing from all things Joe Paterno post-Freeh report has officially begun.

Just a few hours after the entire investigation into Penn State’s actions concerning former defensive coordinator Jerry Sandusky came to light, Nike has decided to remove Paterno’s name from the child development center on its campus in Beaverton, Oregon.

“I have been deeply saddened by the news coming out of this investigation at Penn State,” said Nike Chief Executive Mark Parker, a Penn State graduate, in a statement. “It is a terrible tragedy that children were unprotected from such abhorrent crimes.   With the findings released today, I have decided to change the name of our child care center at our World Headquarters. My thoughts are with the victims and the Penn State community.”

At Paterno’s memorial in January, Nike CEO Phil Knight (pictured) came to the long-time coach’s defense in handling the Sandusky situation.

“There is a villain in this tragedy, it lies in that investigation. Not in Joe Paterno’s response,” Knight said. “Who is the real trustee at Penn State University?”

Today, his statement was a bit more modest:

Other than my parents, my college coach, Bill Bowerman, was the biggest influence in my life. Bill Bowerman and Joe Paterno shared some great qualities. Throughout Joe Paterno’s career, he strived to put young athletes in a position to succeed and win in sport but most importantly in life. Joe influenced thousands of young men to become better leaders, fathers and husbands. 

According to the investigation, it appears Joe made missteps that led to heartbreaking consequences. I missed that Joe missed it, and I am extremely saddened on this day. My love for Joe and his family remains.

(Hat tip: the Oregonian) 

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26 Responses to “Paterno’s name taken off Nike child development center”
  1. stoutfiles says: Jul 12, 2012 1:17 PM

    Well done Nike. Hopefully PSU has the courage to do the same.

  2. phillyphever says: Jul 12, 2012 1:21 PM

    So Knight, regret those words now?

  3. arizonapetdoctor says: Jul 12, 2012 1:25 PM

    I hope someone (reporter) asks Coach K to clarify his comments regarding his support of JoePa

  4. prince5000 says: Jul 12, 2012 1:25 PM

    take his name off everything it’s on.

  5. sufferingphilsfan says: Jul 12, 2012 1:27 PM ironic..a company that pays their slaves..err workers 45 cents an hour to make shoes is taking the moral high ground.

  6. viceburgh says: Jul 12, 2012 1:33 PM

    Scrap bronze dealers, prepare your bids now.

  7. techvet says: Jul 12, 2012 1:33 PM

    Where does the OregonLive story say they are removing the name?

  8. gmsingh says: Jul 12, 2012 1:33 PM

    I sure hope they didn’t replace it with Tiger Woods’ name!

  9. alligatorsnapper says: Jul 12, 2012 1:47 PM

    If they don’t I will throw away my Nike’s and replace my son’s with Addidas or Converse or just about anything else.

    P. Knight–do you now regret your previous statements about Paterno?

  10. galvezben says: Jul 12, 2012 1:51 PM

    Now if ESPN could get Matt Millen to admit he’s wrong about JoePa…NAH..that will never happen.

  11. deadeye says: Jul 12, 2012 1:54 PM

    How many things (buildings, streets, etc.) have Paterno’s name attached to them? Those are all fair game to quietly be renamed.

  12. xtremesportsmaniac says: Jul 12, 2012 1:58 PM

    Nice move by Nike but Phil Knight is still a clown!

  13. polegojim says: Jul 12, 2012 2:04 PM

    This is what happens when reputation, power, and success become more important than right/wrong and people.

    PSU is not even remotely the only org failing with this issue.

  14. showerswithsandusky says: Jul 12, 2012 2:09 PM

    Tear it down now! THAT statue is a slap to the face of every victim who was raped because HE did nothing! Hope HE is getting sodomized by a Minotaur in the fiery pits of hell! How’s that feel you 4 eyed POS?

  15. deadeye says: Jul 12, 2012 2:13 PM

    “PSU is not even remotely the only org failing with this issue.”


    This is correct, and important to point out. Countless college football coaches wield too much power, it wasn’t just Paterno. Countless organizations have covered up evil for their own benefit.

    Corruption is everywhere, and virtually everyone is blind to at least some of it.

  16. trapshoot says: Jul 12, 2012 2:17 PM

    Now Pen State should eliminate anything with Nike on it.

  17. takingbovadasmoney says: Jul 12, 2012 2:18 PM

    Phil Knight is a whore.

  18. dhlions says: Jul 12, 2012 2:33 PM

    Ahhh yes, Nike… always standing up for the kids. As long as those kids can work for pennies and hour and make shoes faster than a robot.

  19. rcali says: Jul 12, 2012 4:01 PM

    It took this long?

  20. onceuponatimeinsports says: Jul 12, 2012 4:48 PM

    This is just the beginning PSU fans. Get ready for everything else associated with this liar and all around despicable human being to be scrubbed clean.

    And the stain of Paterno’s sins will still not be cleansed.

  21. pulpfictionado says: Jul 12, 2012 4:58 PM

    sufferingphilsfan: because of your post at 1:27 PM, I hope the Phillies win the NLCS!

    alligatorsnapper: that company owns Converse — don’t put your kid in any of that crap. adidas, reebok, yes. Knight, stuff, no.

    showerswithsandusky: only love can conquer evil. Don’t stoop to sandusky/paterno’s level.

    deadeye, dhlions: you’re right.

    trapshoot: Now Pen State should eliminate anything with N–e on it. As should alabama, Texas, NFL, Kentucky ….

  22. geo4444 says: Jul 12, 2012 6:07 PM

    The following comments are based solely upon the Freeh report (FR), its findings and supporting documentation found within said report.

    The findings by Freeh as they relate to Joseph V. Paterno (JVP) do not just appear inaccurate but constitute gross negligence on the part of said lead investigator and his investigative support team.

    Second paragraph of FINDINGS:

    “…and Head Football Coach Joseph V. Paterno – … concealed Sandusky’s activities from the Board of Trustees, the University community and authorities…”

    This is one of the most striking attack comments to JVP. And it has no basis on information supplied in the FR. When, if ever, did JVP meet with the Board of Trustee’s (BOT)? I am not aware of any time for JVP to do so. In the course of his work career or during these investigations. JVP did in fact notify the university community and authorities. The head of the campus police. Yes, this is apparently a small print item as per The Clery Act and yes he was wrong to not contact that respective Clery Act person. But as per the report, people were not trained or were grossly untrained on the proper procedures of The Clery Act. This lack of training falls on the university not JVP. Yes, JVP was probably guilty of not having the knowledge the university should have properly implemented.

    The second paragraph of FINDINGS continues with:

    “…They exhibited a striking lack of empathy for Sandusky’s victims by failing to inquire as to their safety and well-being, especially by not attempting to determine the identity of the child…”

    As per the reported quote that follows, it sounds very responsible and an excellently well-balanced decision by JVP to put the investigation and procedural steps in the hands of the people with the proper expertise (head of police):

    Paterno told a reporter that “I didn’t know exactly how to handle it and I was afraid to do something that might jeopardize what the university procedure was. So I backed away and turned it over to some other people, people I thought would have a little more expertise than I did. It didn’t work out that way.

    Why would or should JVP perform an investigation into something he knew little about and whose skillset was certainly not performing (police) investigations?

    Continue to consider that JVP may have pushed for the opposite results the FR was indicating. The exact emails between Spaniar and Curley have the following quote within it that seems to possibly indicate that Curley didn’t want to go the direction JVP discussed with him. At a minimum, we don’t know what Curley did or did not discuss with JVP. If Curley was trying to minimize the impact of all this, who is to say he told JVP next to nothing? The FP gives no indication on why Freeh drew the conclusions he did on JVP.

    Curley: “After giving it more thought and talking it over with Joe yesterday—I am uncomfortable with what we…” (who is we…Joe & Curley or Spanier & Curley?) “…agreed were the next steps. I am having trouble going to everyone, but the person involved.” (did JVP suggest going to everyone?)

    Now Curley’s communication (information shared) with JVP may have been limited, at best…we don’t know. Freeh does not know either.

    So where is the takeaway that JVP was suggesting burying any of this? Where?

    Undoubtedly, Freeh took some serious liberty with drawing the conclusions he did on Joseph V. Paterno, and it clears up little as far as his involvement. If there is more evidence then supply it, but it is certainly not in the Freeh Report.

  23. handsofsweed says: Jul 12, 2012 7:34 PM

    Lol @ referring to Nike’s HQ as a “campus.” The rest of us call it a “compound.”

  24. billobrienschindimple says: Jul 12, 2012 8:06 PM

    @ deadeye

    The answer to your question is 2 things. The newest wing of the library and a flavor of ice cream at the Creamery are named after Paterno.

  25. spankygreen says: Jul 12, 2012 8:31 PM

    gmsingh says: Jul 12, 2012 1:33 PM

    I sure hope they didn’t replace it with Tiger Woods’ name!

    Hey gmsingh, while you’re slamming Tiger Woods at least make an attempt to hold the 12 willing Whores accountable for their part…….

  26. Chris Ross says: Jul 13, 2012 1:57 AM

    I don’t even think Joe Paterno’s legacy is even a question. It’s broken down, trampled on and is beyond repair. Humpty dumpty had a great fall and all the kings horses and all the kings men, couldn’t put humpty together again. That’s JoePa’s rep now in a nutshell to me. I don’t see how anyone else can see it that way to be honest.

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