STATE COLLEGE, PA - JANUARY 22: Community members pay their respects at the statue of Joe Paterno, the former Penn State football coach, after hearing of Paterno's death outside of Beaver Stadium on January 22, 2012 in State College, Pennsylvania. Paterno, who was 85 years old, had been battling lung cancer. (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)
If Joe Paterno's statue is going to come down, it could reportedly happen as soon as this weekend. Follow @SBNationCFB For more on Nittany Lions football, visit Penn State blog Black Shoe Diaries, plus Big Ten blog Off Tackle Empire, SB Nation Pittsburgh and SB Nation Philly.
Perhaps the least essential element of the Penn State scandal: what happens to Joe Paterno's statue? Even though it makes for nothing tangible, it's still a symbol that means a great deal to many people, both for what it stands for and for what Penn State chooses to do with it going forward. And according to reports, the school has made its decision.
After a whole lot of chatter Friday that PSU is going to take down the statue, possibly under cover of night, NFL Network's Kimberly Jones (a caveat, from Ben Jones) tweeted the following:
Am told that Penn State plans to take down the Paterno statue this weekend.— Kimberly Jones (@KimJonesSports) July 20, 2012
That's the most solid report that's been released on the fate of the statue thus far. (Update: Moments later, Bonnie Bernstein tweeted that the decision to take down the statue this weekend was made Thursday night by the Board of Trustees.) Previously, the school said it would wait and see, the sculptor called for a focus on what really matters here, students camped out to defend the piece of bronze, and a plane flew overhead threatening to tear it down.