When Penn State faced Northwestern last season in Happy Valley, Joe Paterno became just the third college football coach ever and the first at the Bowl Subdivision level to reach the 400-win plateau with the Nittany Lions' 35-21 victory. He'll be chasing history against the Wildcats again this year, as he now looks to tie Eddie Robinson for second all-time in victories at 408 when Penn State takes on Northwestern on Saturday night.
"He was a delightful person and obviously did a fantastic job at Grambling," Paterno said of the legendary coach at his weekly press conference on Tuesday. "I think Eddie was a great guy."
Robinson, who died in 2007 at age 88, went 408-165-15 at Grambling between 1941 and 1997 and won 17 Southwestern Athletic Conference championships at the Championship Subdivision level (formerly known as I-AA). He was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 1997.
If Paterno is able to catch and pass Robinson, the only coach sitting above him will be Division III's John Gagliardi, who at the moment has 480 wins between Carroll and St. John's.