About 10 hours after Penn State’s Board of Trustees announced legendary head football coach Joe Paterno would be relieved of his duties, interim head coach Tom Bradley spoke to the football team at the Lasch Football Building.
The team gathered to meet with Bradley at 8 a.m. Thursday, with the entire staff, including wide receivers coach Mike McQueary and quarterbacks coach Jay Paterno. Players said Bradley spoke for about 10 minutes and then the captains led a players-only meeting for about five minutes.
Cornerback Stephon Morris said Bradley did not want to say a whole lot as the coaches still seem a little shaken from everything that has occurred the last few days. According to Morris, Bradley emphasized to them that it’s their team. He can coach, but he can’t put on the pads.
“It’s our team. It’s not the coaches’ team. It’s not the university’s team. It’s the players’ team,” Morris said. “It’s a very unfortunate situation, but at the same time we still have football to play and we have to go out there and take care of business on Saturday.”
Despite everything that has happened, Morris said the team’s goal of winning a Big Ten championship remains. Linebacker Michael Mauti said the team is pretty unified and the meeting helped them to stay on the same page.
“It’s something that there’s the big white elephant in the room. How are you not going to look at it? But that’s what we just got done talking about,” Mauti said.
“All the coaches left and the players got in there and said ‘What do you want to make of this thing? You only got one shot at it. This is for our seniors.’ We’re not gonna let all this, this has nothing to do with us… We want to finish this out the right way.”
Bradley will address the media at Beaver Stadium at 11 a.m.