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Joe Paterno: 1926-2012

A look back at the 46-year career of Penn State head football coach Joe Paterno, who passed away on Jan. 22, 2012.

A look back at the 46-year career of Penn State head football coach Joe Paterno, as collected from the Inquirer and Daily News.

Michael Vitez: As I wandered about Penn State, I understood why people love Joe Paterno so much.
Pennsylvania State University head football coach Joe Paterno and president Graham B. Spanier were fired Wednesday, toppled by questions and withering criticism over the way they handled allegations of child sex-abuse by a former coach.
SIX DECADES OF 'JOEPA'
This circa 1949 publicity photo released Monday, Jan. 23, 2012 by Brown University shows the late Joe Paterno, as co-captain of the Brown football team in Providence, R.I.   Paterno, the former Penn State head football coach, died Sunday, Jan. 22, 2012. He was 85. (AP Photo/Brown University)
ASSOCIATED PRESS
This circa 1949 publicity photo released Monday, Jan. 23, 2012 by Brown University shows the late Joe Paterno, as co-captain of the Brown football team in Providence, R.I. Paterno, the former Penn State head football coach, died Sunday, Jan. 22, 2012. He was 85. (AP Photo/Brown University)
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PATERNO'S CAREER HIGHLIGHTS

Oct. 29, 2011: Paterno passes Eddie Robinson to become the winningest head coach in Division 1 college football with his 409th win.

Nov. 6,  2010: Paterno nets his 400th career win with a 35-21 victory over Northwestern University.

Dec. 4, 2007: Paterno is inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame alongside Doug Flutie, Rex Kern, Chris Zorich and others.

Immortalizing Paterno

Nov. 2, 2001: A seven-foot-tall bronze statue of Paterno is unveiled in front of Beaver Stadium after he breaks "Bear" Bryant's career record for wins by a college coach.

Sept. 12, 1998: Paterno wins his 300th game as head coach in a victory over Bowling Green.

Jan. 17, 1998: Paterno donates $3.5 million to Penn State for various projects, including a library named in his honor.

1994 season: The Lions beat Oregon in the Rose Bowl, and end the season 12-0, but have to settle for No. 2 to Nebraska.

Sept. 5, 1993: Paterno leads the Nittany Lions to a victory over Minnesota during the team's first game in the Big 10 Conference.

Jan. 2, 1987: Paterno leads the team to a second national title, upsetting Miami 14-10 in the Fiesta Bowl. Paterno is named Sports Illustrated's Sportsman of the Year for 1986.

Paterno sweetens career with first national championship

Jan. 1, 1983: Penn State beats Georgia, 27-33, in the Sugar Bowl to claim its first national title.

1973 season: Paterno leads the Nittany Lions to their third unbeaten season, after which running back John Cappelletti earns the Heisman Trophy

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VIDEOS

Thousands of mourners lined up to pay their last respects to Joe Paterno during a public viewing at Penn State.