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Penn State cancels coach Joe Paterno press conference amid sex-abuse scandal

Penn State head coach Joe Paterno addresses the media after the game against the Indiana State Sycamores on September 3, 2011 at Beaver Stadium in State College, Pennsylvania. Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images

Joe Paterno
Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images

(AP/CBS) STATE COLLEGE - Penn State administrators canceled a weekly news conference in which Head Coach Joe Paterno was expected to field questions about a sex-abuse scandal involving former defensive coach Jerry Sandusky.

Pictures: Child-sex scandal rocks Penn State

"Due to the ongoing legal circumstances centered around the recent allegations and charges, we have determined that today's press conference cannot be held and will not be rescheduled," assistant Athletic Director Jeff Nelson said in a statement.

Paterno's son Scott told The Associated Press that the decision to cancel Tuesday's planned conference was made by President Graham Spanier's office.

Scott said that his father was disappointed and had been prepared to take questions about the scandal.

The news conference would have been the first chance for reporters to ask Paterno what he knew about Jerry Sandusky, his former defensive coordinator and one-time heir apparent, who was indicted on charges of sexually abusing eight boys over a period of 15 years.

Paterno testified in the grand jury proceedings that led to the charges, and authorities have said that he is not a target of the investigation. But the state police commissioner has chastised him and other school officials for not doing enough to try to stop the suspected abuse.

A person familiar with Sandusky's relationship with Penn State told The Associated Press that the former coach long maintained an office in the East Area Locker building which is across the street from the Penn State football team's building and was on campus as recently as week ago working out.

The university's online directory listed Sandusky, whom PSU officials said was banned from campus over the weekend - as an assistant professor emeritus of physical education in the Lasch building.

The grand jury investigating Sandusky found that he was given the office, a parking pass and other amenities as part of his retirement package in 1999.

  • Crimesider Staff

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