Joe Paterno, College Football’s Winningest Coach, Dies at 85

STATE COLLEGE, PA - JANUARY 22: A member of the community pays respect to the statue of Joe Paterno, the former Penn State football coach, outside of Beaver Stadium in the early hours of January 22, 2012 in State College, Pennsylvania. The community was reacting to news that Joe Paterno, who is suffering from lung cancer and who was fired in November in the aftermath of child sex abuse charges against a former assistant, was in serious condition. (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)
Photo: Patrick Smith/2012 Getty Images

Former Penn State football coach Joe Paterno died this morning at a Happy Valley hospital — a statement put the cause of death as “metastatic small cell carcinoma of the lung.” Paterno, who coached the Nittany Lions for 46 years, found out he had lung cancer last November, less than a week after being fired over the child sex abuse scandal that erupted around his assistant coach Jerry Sandusky. Less than two months later. Joe Pa, as he was known around campus, was admitted to hospital where his condition continued to worsen. In memory of college football’s winningest coach, a moment of silence was held before the tip-off at today’s PSU-Illinois game where, according to the AP, Penn State’s coaches wore black ribbons.

Joe Paterno, PSU’s Longtime Coach, Dies at 85