Jerry Sandusky Scandal

Sandusky: Paterno never asked about Sandusky’s interactions with children or expressed disapproval

Joe Paterno never spoke to Jerry Sandusky directly about his behavior, according to a full transcript of Bob Costas’ interview with Jerry Sandusky acquired by the Centre Daily Times.

Significant portions of the interview were excised from the segment that appeared on NBC’s “Rock Center” Monday night. Here are some portions of the interview that weren’t shown:

Sandusky described his relationship with Paterno as “cordial.” He said Paterno never inquired into Sandusky’s interactions with children or expressed disapproval of any kind, even after, according to a grand jury report, he had been told of alleged sexual contact between Sandusky and a boy in the Penn State football team showers.

Sandusky denied he had committed that rape, and denied a charge described in the grand jury report that he had been caught by a janitor giving oral sex to another boy in the same showers.

Sandusky admitted to having taken a “strong interest” in young boys, but told Costas said his actions had been misconstrued in a sexual way.

“I’m a very passionate person in terms of trying to make a difference in the lives of some young people,” Sandusky said. “I’ve worked very hard to try to connect with them. To make them feel good about themselves. To be something significant in their lives.

When asked by Costas whether his relationships with young people fit the classic profile of a pedophile, Sandusky responded: “Well — you might think that. I don’t know. (Laughs) In terms of — my relationships with so many, many young people. I would — I would guess that there are many young people who would come forward. Many more young people who would come forward and say that my methods and — and what I had done for them made a very positive impact on their life.

“And I didn’t go around seeking out every young person for sexual needs that I’ve helped. There are so many that I didn’t have — I hardly had any contact with who I have helped in many, many ways.”

Sandusky told Costas that after his retirement from Penn State in 1999, he interviewed for job openings at the University of Virginia and considered looking into a position at Bucknell University. He had not been forced to leave Penn State, he said.

“Some people would think that would be plausible. It was not true,” he said. “There was never any mention of that. There was a retirement window that was available to me. And — and — I had talked — I had talked to the university actually about starting football at — Penn State Altoona. So that there were — there were a number of things that — were happening. And it was never mentioned to me that — that I was having to leave because of — any kind of behavior. That was never.”

Sandusky confirmed he was given the option to stay on as an assistant coach at Penn State, though perhaps not as defensive coordinator.

Sandusky told Costas he felt he was being unfairly judged by the public.

“People have created this perception,” Sandusky said. “They’ve created someone that I don’t believe I am.”

Cliff White can be reached at 235-3928.