I’m glad to see the College Football Hall of Fame has finally recognized the efforts by Shane Conlan while he was a Penn State linebacker. This honor is long overdue.
Conlan gave credit to the late Joe Paterno for his accomplishments, and I’m sure somewhere Joe Paterno responded by saying, “I had nothing to do with it. You did what I told you to do. What more could I ask for?” This would be typical of a Paterno response in deflecting praise where it rightfully belongs.
On the other hand, Dave Joyner is quoted as saying, “His intense, physical play and leadership were exciting to watch. Most importantly, though, is how he conducted himself on and off the field; always with humility and class. His demeanor, drive and success after football serve as another example for all our student athletes.” However, Joyner never makes mention of these qualities being instilled into every player who played under Paterno.
Maybe Joyner forgot what President Ronald Reagan said at the White House when the national champion Nittany Lions visited in 1987, when Reagan said that coach Paterno is not only preparing his players to play football but for life. By saying this, Reagan made clear what we all know, and that is that coach Paterno educated his players in more ways than one.
These players, like Shane Conlan, are living proof of the class that Joe Paterno had, which is something that Dave Joyner lacks by not mentioning coach Paterno at all.
David G. Sage