Paterno in no hurry to define future

UNIVERSITY PARK -- Penn State football coach Joe Paterno found plenty of things to discuss with his players during a rare open practice Saturday afternoon in Holuba Hall, making his points with his familar high-pitched yells.

Contract discussions weren't on his mind nor, he later told reporters, have they been lately, despite the fact that the 81-year-old Paterno's contract is up at the end of the coming season.

"I think the university will do what they think is right whenever the time comes," Paterno said Saturday. "Right now, I’m very comfortable."

Paterno reiterated his desire to have his successor be someone within the program and said that he did not want to abandon his assistant coaches. But he was hesitant to say anything definitive about what might happen after this season.

"I think the future will be defined when it has to be defined," Paterno said. "It just doesn’t have to be defined today. ... If I felt it was important and I felt that we had to say something, otherwise it was going to be detrimental to the future of Penn State football, that’s the last thing I’d want. You don’t think I’d put this many years into this thing and want to screw it up? I don’t want to do that."

For more on the story, see Sunday's Centre Daily Times.