Joe Paterno fired by Penn State! That was something that no one could foresee 2 months ago. The day that Joe Paterno is fired from Penn State is another day that the sports world is transformed. The reputation that he cultivated over his 46 years of being the head coach is trashed.
While I personally believe that the trustee’s of Penn State did the right thing by cleaning house the impact remains. A man who has been synonymous with everything that is good about college athletics has immediately lost his golden image. The facts of the situation will come to light eventually, but the damage to the sports world has been done.
There are many people hoping that the evidence will prove that Joe Paterno did what he could in this situation there will forever be a tarnish to how his career ended. The simple act of not following up on the accusations have cost a man his legacy.
The very first sports memory that I can remember where a legacy crumbled so quickly was in the passing of the late Len Bias. I remember watching the breaking news of the death. It was shocking to me that an athlete of his calibre at the top of physical condition could pass away. I was not aware of the tragic consequences of drug use.
I remember running to tell my Dad about the news and he calmly stated that it was probably the result of drug use. This was a person that two days prior has been the second pick by the Boston Celtics and one evening cost him everything. That was a day that changed many lives.
There were countless youth that saw what had happened to Len Bias and made them think about the consequences of drug use. A friend and I remarked a year or two ago how this one instance prevented us from ever trying drugs. That was the first major sports transformation that I can remember.
The years ahead will dictate what the outcome of the Joe Paterno sports transformation will be. I am sure there will be countless conversations with children and parents about what exactly Joe Paterno did or did not do.
The older I get and the more tarnished athletics become it is an instant reminder where the true faith should be placed. We are reminded that “There shall not any man be able to stand before thee all the days of thy life: as I was with Moses, so I will be with thee: I will not fail thee, nor forsake thee. Joshua 1:5 KJV” The one we should really look up to and depend on is God!