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Bill Clinton gives his take on Penn State scandal

Bill Clinton Penn State ice creamBill Clinton enjoys some Penn State ice cream with former PSU President Graham Spanier. Image source: Penn State Live.

Clinton speaks about Penn State on Philly sports radio

Bill Clinton Penn State ice cream
Bill Clinton enjoys some Penn State ice cream with former PSU President Graham Spanier. Image source: Penn State Live.

President Bill Clinton was on Sports Radio WIP in Philadelphia on Wednesday to discuss a number of topics as part of his media tour to promote a new book, Back to Work. Part of the discussion included the recent Penn State scandal.

“If the allegations are true it’s a heart-breaking thing,” Clinton said to Glen Macnow and Anthony Gargano on Wednesday. I love Penn State… I have always had the highest respect for Joe Paterno, and I still do.”

The Board of Trustees fired Paterno last week in light of his controversial involvement in the Jerry Sandusky investigation. But Paterno’s link to the overall investigation and scandal was just a minor player in the grand scheme of things. Clinton advises that it is best to allow the legal process to play out.

“This is a horrible deal and my view is you just need to see it through,” Clinton said. “The personnel decisions have been made but now you need to see it through, find out what the truth is, do the right thing, and if you do that the good will emerge again.”

“The enduring legacy, the positive things that have happened will reemerge but they cannot reemerge until you just get to the bottom of what happened, and let the law take its course and everybody follow the do-right rule and when it’s done then you can put the house back together. It’s still a great place.

“Joe Paterno had a great life there and he did great, great things there… You don’t want to mix the two things up. Nobody’s saying it’s not true and can’t be acknowledged but we need to find out who knew what when, who did what when, who was supposed to do what and what actually happened. Then the law can take its course and the university can begin to put its life back together.”

The trial of Sandusky is scheduled for preliminary hearing on December 6 in Centre County court. The preliminary hearings for Tim Curley and Gary Schultz, two men charged with perjury related to the investigation, are scheduled for December 7 in Harrisburg.

Clinton delivered the 1996 commencement speech at Penn State and his father-in-law, Hugh Rodham, played football for Penn State as a third-string tight end well before the Paterno era got underway (graduated in 1935). Clinton’s brother-in-law, Hugh Rodham, also played football for Penn State as a backup quarterback for Paterno (graduated in 1972).

Before Clinton was done on this stop on his book tour though he made sure to kick back and talk about his Arkansas Razorbacks and their chances of throwing LSU a curve ball in the BCS picture. Use the widget below to listen to Clinton share his thoughts on the SEC race (or if the widget does not show up, click here).

About the Author

Kevin McGuire
Contributor to College Football Talk on Also a contributor to Athlon Sports and The Comeback. Member of Football Writers Association of America and National Football Foundation. Follow on Twitter @KevinOnCFB.