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Penn State Sandusky Emails May Cloud Joe Paterno's Legacy

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By Andrew Lu on July 03, 2012 3:58 PM

Penn State administrators including Athletic Director Tim Curley supposedly had a plan in place to report Jerry Sandusky to authorities back in 2001, according to Penn State email messages leaked to news reporters.

Then-graduate assistant Mike McQueary had just walked in on Sandusky in the Penn State showers with a 10-year-old boy, and the administrators developed a plan of action that actually made sense: Report Sandusky to law enforcement.

However, these plans were allegedly derailed after the administrators had a talk with Joe Paterno, as suggested by the leaked emails, reports the San Francisco Chronicle.

The full contents of the Joe Paterno emails were not released, but the messages that were leaked seem to paint a picture of Penn State administrators determined to act to stop Jerry Sandusky. Joe Paterno appears to have stepped in to protect his friend and former assistant coach, as shown by an abrupt change in the administrators' plan of action after talking to Paterno, reports the Chronicle.

After talking to Paterno, Curley allegedly wrote to the other administrators, "If Sandusky is cooperative, we would work with him." As a result, Sandusky was not turned over to the cops, and instead was asked to stay off campus, writes the Chronicle. He molested four more boys after the Penn State email exchanges.

It should be noted, however, that not all of the emails were released, and no emails or other communications by Paterno himself were released.

Instead, based on the leaked Penn State emails, the media appears to be assuming that the only reason Penn State administrators decided not to turn Sandusky over was because of a conversation with Paterno. This jumping to conclusions without an opportunity to review all the facts is not necessarily fair to the late JoePa's legacy.

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