Last night, Penn State University students reacted to the firing of (very) long-time football coach Joe Paterno by taking to the streets, bashing light poles and flipping a news van.
Former Terrapin women’s basketball player Marissa Coleman tweeted this morning that she’s, uh, kind of OK with that.
“The PSU students really shouldn’t be looked down upon for rioting,” said Coleman, who now plays for the WNBA’s Washington Mystics. “Let’s be serious, college students are always looking for an excuse to […] riot lol…I know I always wanted to, but never did in fear @umdwbb @BrendaFrese would find out haha.”
Paterno, who amassed an unprecedented 409 career wins since he began coaching the Nittany Lions in 1966, was fired by the Penn State board of trustees last night (along with Penn State President Graham Spanier) in connection with the mishandling of sexual abuse allegations against former assistant coach Jerry Sandusky, who is charged with molesting eight boys over a 15-year period, including some incidents that allegedly happened in Penn State facilities. Sandusky met his victims through a charity that he started, according to grand jury documents.
Paterno learned at least general details of some of Sandusky’s alleged crimes in 2002, according to USA Today, but failed to follow through with any action other than reporting the allegations to then-Athletic Director Tim Curley, who also did not go to police. The sexual abuse then allegedly continued for several more years, but multiple TV reports show students cited Paterno’s contributions to the community and long coaching legacy as enough reason to allow him to at least finish this year’s football season with the team.