Penn State's Bradley: Ohio State fans "first-class"

Posted: November 20, 2011

COLUMBUS, Ohio - Penn State interim head coach Tom Bradley appreciated the way fans at Ohio Stadium treated his players before and during Saturday's game against Ohio State.

"You've got to take your hat off to them," he said, "and I actually did that, walking off the field after warm-ups, when they stood up and cheered us. That was first-class. This is a first-class university here."

The Ohio State student body encouraged fans at the game to support the Nittany Lions in light of the child sexual-abuse scandal that surfaced on campus two weeks ago. The fans booed the Lions as they would any visiting team, but there was no bitterness or negative behavior.

Penn State quarterback Matt McGloin said the Nittany Lions' fast start - two touchdowns and a field goal on their first three possessions - helped quiet the crowd a bit.

No comment

Bradley didn't want to talk about remarks by Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim, who, when asked about whether he knew if assistant coach Bernie Fine had allegedly had sex with a minor, replied: "I'm not Joe Paterno. Somebody didn't come and tell me Bernie Fine did something, and I'm hiding it. I know nothing."

"No, I have no comment," Bradley said. "Really, I heard briefly about it. This isn't about that. It's about this football team. This is about these players. Let's talk about them."

President's message

Penn State president Rodney Erickson went on at halftime with a taped message, speaking on behalf of the university and how it is dealing with the scandal that has rocked the campus.

"As we struggle with the recent terrible news, I have seen another and more hopeful side of Penn State emerge, one that focuses on compassion, generosity, and resilience," Erickson said.

"I'm proud of our students, faculty, staff, alumni, and friends who have come together and joined others across the nation in support of the victims and each other."

Taliaferro's return

Adam Taliaferro, who suffered a severe neck injury at Ohio Stadium in a 2000 game, returned to the field and said, "I've been blessed" in recovering from the blow that nearly left him paralyzed.

"It's always great to come back," he told 6ABC in a sideline interview, standing on the 25-yard line, near the site where he was hurt. "A lot of people from Ohio State, without them I'm not walking today."

Taliaferro, who was recently elected as a Gloucester County freeholder, also spoke of former coach Joe Paterno, who was diagnosed Friday with lung cancer.

"I want to support the school and support the team and think about coach Paterno," he said. "He's going through some health issues. He's in our prayers and we hope to see him back soon."


Contact staff writer Joe Juliano at 215-854-4494 or jjuliano@phillynews.com.

 

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