Beaver Stadium stands alone now that the seven ft tall statue of long-time iconic coach, Joe Paterno was removed early Sunday morning.
Amid the mass amount of controversy that the school has been receiving since the Sandusky sexual abuse case has been going on, school officials decided that it was best for the schools image and for morale purposes.
The seven ft. tall, 900 lb. statue, erected at the entrance to Beaver Stadium in 2001, was loaded onto a forklift as close to 150 students chanted, “We Are Penn State.”
The decision to remove the homage to Paterno was made following the release of an internal investigation into exactly how former assistant coach Jerry Sandusky had managed to molest numerous boys over the course of many years, often on University property.
As RadarOnline.com reported, former FBI Director Louis Freeh, who headed the investigation, alleged a cover-up by Paterno, President Graham Spanier, Athletic Director Tim Curley and Vice President Gary Schultz. Their failure to report Sandusky to child-welfare authorities in 2001 allowed him to continue molesting boys, the report found.
Just months after the scandal was made known worldwide, Joe Paterno died of cancer on January 22nd, just two months after he was fired as coach as the Sandusky scandal was exploding around him.
His family, along with attorneys for Spanier, Curley and Schultz, vehemently deny they protected a pedophile. Curley and Schultz await trial on charges of failing to report child abuse and lying to a grand jury but maintain their innocence. Spanier hasn’t been charged.
Sandusky was convicted last month of 45 counts of sexual abuse of 10 boys.
Although Sandusky has been found guilty, the drama is not over. Earlier today, the NCAA made an announcement that it would impose corrective and punitive measures against Penn State. An announcement is scheduled for Monday and may be as severe as suspending the school’s football program for several years.