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Students Riot After Paterno Gets Fired

STATE COLLEGE, Pa. (CBS) – Penn State’s board of trustees held an emergency meeting last night, deciding to fire legendary football coach Joe Paterno and University President Graham Spanier.

Board vice president John Surma says they told Paterno the news over the phone.

“We were unable to find a way to get to do that in person without causing, we thought, greater distraction and that was the conclusion we made,” he announced to a large crowd of reporters.

paterno joerobbins Students Riot After Paterno Gets Fired

Joe Paterno (credit: Joe Robbins/Getty Images)

“In consideration of all the facts and the difficulties that we are encountering during this time, it was the trustees’ view that it was in the best interest, long-term interest, of our university to make that change.”

But many students didn’t get that message, immediately lashing out, first coming to Old Main where they chanted at school officials, then a mob marched down Beaver Canyon. Once the lights of the TV cameras went on, the mob turned ugly. A television station’s truck was flipped, as police in riot gear began spraying pepper spray to try to control the crowd.

“There’s a van up the street that got flipped,” one eyewitness said. “A few cars that got flipped around town, definitely a lot of people got maced, there was a lot of mace going around.”

In a statement, the 84-year-old coach asked students to show respect for university property. “I am disappointed with the Board of Trustees’ decision, but I have to accept it. A tragedy occurred, and we all have to have patience to let the legal process proceed.”

Graham Spanier also released a statement saying he “always acted honorably and in the best interests of the university, the buck stops here. In this situation, I believe it is in the best interests of the university to give my successor a clear path for resolving the issues before us.”

All this is of course, in the wake of the allegations against former defensive coordinator Jerry Sandusky, and of a potential cover-up at the university.

Defensive coordinator Tom Bradley will coach the Nittany Lions this weekend against Nebraska.

Reported by Jim Melwert, KYW Newsradio 1060

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  • clem

    I am also very displeased Ialso felt like kicking throwing or babshing someone or something.

  • Roze

    This is a nation full of jocks, it’s disgusting. A bunch of White kids whose anger is misplaced, that’s for sure. Their race is literally DYING and this is all they care about, amazing job the orporate mainstream media has done brainwashing America….buy buy buy! sell sell sell! What-the-f*ck-ever.

    • Phil

      Wake up white man. Your people are dying and all you care about is a stupid game.

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  • rifleman1234

    students riot, students riot, students riot! what is going on in our colleges?????

  • Justin

    The students of Penn State are nothing but animals! This is now going around the world showing and proving this fact. They riot when Bin Laden is killed and post it on Youtube and now this? NOTHING BUT ANIMALS!!!

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  • john

    Because the kids are complete punk morons looking for any reason to destroy something.

    • Kira

      WELL SAID!!!!

    • Alex

      no, you are probably just an old miserable man. you were young once too oldie. FLOCKA FLOCKA

  • Anthony

    Where are the riots over the cover-up of children being raped?

    • Pachacutec

      I agree with you completely! I support the right of the students to protest the firing. However, when there is destruction of private/public property, when they start throwing rocks and bottles, that is another thing altogether; whoever engages in such actions should be put in jail for a bit AND expelled from the school. That being said; considering the emotional climate at Penn State, I would hope that security will be drastically increased for the rest of the sports season; there’s so many psychos out there, it wouldn’t take much for one of them to use this as an excuse to do something stupid and/or dangerous.

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