Former Penn State coach Joe Paterno had his firing re-affirmed by the Board of Trustees this past Friday and remains a controversial figure as the Jerry Sandusky child sex abuse scandal continues to unfold. That isn't stopping at least one member of the search committee tasked with finding his replacement, Russ Rose, from expressing hope that Paterno can be part of the process according to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette's Ron Musselman.
"I hope to have a conversation with Joe," Rose said during an interview last week in his office at Rec Hall. "I don't have any pictures. I don't have any autographs, but let me tell you, I'm a huge fan.
"I'm sad about all of this."
Rose, who has led his team to more than 1,000 wins and five NCAA national championships since 1979, said he would understand if Paterno balked at offering his input on the new coach.
"If that happens, I'll just give him a hug and tell him, 'Thanks for all you've done,'" Rose said.
Rose guided his team to two victories in the NCAA Tournament this past weekend, and his Nittany Lions will appear in the Regional Semifinals next week when they take on UCLA in Lexington, Ken. Penn State is seeking its fifth consecutive national championship and sixth under Rose.