Sunday, January 22, 2012

Joe Paterno

Today, January 22, 2012, the world of sports has lost a legend.  Joe Paterno, the longtime coach of Penn State Univeristy, lost his brief battle with lung cancer. If you are a sports fan you know what Joe Paterno has done for the university.  If you are not a sports fan, and have never heard of Joe Pa until October, your view is going to be wrong.

Joe Paterno donated millions of dollars to the university for libraries, books, and scholarships.  His players, more often than not, graduated (look at the big schools like USC, Texas, Michigan, Ohio State etc, their players usually leave to go to the NFL after their junior year).   Joe Paterno was a great leader, and man, but thats not how many non sports fans are going to remember him.

In September or October of 2011, a news story broke out about one of Paterno's assistant coaches molested some boys.

These incidents happened in the 90s.  One of the younger coaches on the team then saw the coach do innapropriate things to the child, and called his father who told him to ignore it, and that he probably just saw it wrong.  The young man then went to Coach Pa, who contacted Campus police who didnt do anything.  Joe Pa should have gone to the police yes, but he didnt.  I am scared that his legacy will be what he didnt do, not what he did do.

I'm reminded of 5 men from the Bible when I hear think of Joe Paterno: Noah, David, Solomon, Paul, and Judas.

Noah was an alcoholic, but most people remember him as the man who built the arc.
David killed a man and committed adultery, yet God himself called him a man after God's own heart, and we all know the story of David and Goliath.
Solomon married alot of women (i dont know the number on the top of my head) but was considered the wisest man to ever live.
And Paul was first called Saul and he killed Christians, but he is remembered as a great Apostle.
Judas was a disciple of Jesus, one of the 12, but he betrayed Jesus, and that is how we all remember him.

How will we remember Coach Paterno?  (I dont know if he was a Christian or not?) Are you going to remember him as I will as a great coach, and someone who young men looked up to? Or are you going to remember him for what he didnt do?