Jerry Sandusky

Coach / Convict
Date Of Birth:
26 January 1944
Place Of Birth:
Washington, Pennsylvania
Best Known As:
The former Penn State football coach who was convicted of child abuse

Name at birth: Gerald Arthur Sandusky

Jerry Sandusky is the former Penn State football coach who in 2012 was tried and convicted of molesting young boys over the course of a decade. His arrest and conviction were international news, given Sandusky's history as a respected coach and the founder of a youth organization known as The Second Mile. Jerry Sandusky was born in Pennsylvania and played football himself at Penn State, graduating in 1966. He was a graduate assistant at Penn State (1966), and then assistant coach at Juniata College (1967) and offensive line coach at Boston University (1968), before returning to Penn State as an assistant to Joe Paterno in 1969. He coached there for the next 31 seasons, serving 23 years as the school's defensive coordinator, and helped establish the school's reputation as "Linebacker U." (Sports Illustrated called him "the Dean of Linebacker U" in 1999.) Jerry Sandusky retired from coaching in 1999, saying he wanted to focus on The Second Mile, the organization for troubled youth that he had founded in 1977. (It began as a group foster home for boys and then grew into a statewide organization for troubled youth of both genders.) Sandusky stepped down from The Second Mile in September of 2010. 14 months later, in November of 2011, a Pennsylvania grand jury released a report saying that Sandusky had sexually abused eight boys between about 1995 and 2005. Included was an incident in 2002, when Sandusky was reportedly seen abusing a boy in the showers in a Penn State locker room. That incident was reported to Paterno and others at the college, but Sandusky wasn't arrested at the time. He was arrested in 2011 and eventually was charged with crimes ranging from Indecent Assault to Corruption of Minors. In an interview after his arrest, Sandusky said he had showered and "horsed around" with young boys but said he had not abused them and was not a pedophile. Joe Paterno and Penn State President Graham Spanier were fired by the school after Sandusky's arrest. Sandusky was tried in 2012 on 51 counts of child abuse; on June 22, 2012, the jury returned a verdict of guilty on 45 of the counts. At age 68, Jerry Sandusky was sent to prison with a sentence of 30 to 60 years.
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Jerry Sandusky married his wife, the former Dorothy Gross, in 1966. She is known as Dottie. They have six adopted children: Ray (born circa 1963), EJ (c. 1969), Kara (c. 1972), Jeff (c. 1975), Jon (c. 1977) and Matt (c. 1979). Jon Sandusky became Director of Player Personnel for the Cleveland Browns in 2010. Matt Sandusky announced through his lawyer, during the 2012 trial, that he had been sexually abused by Jerry Sandusky… The name “The Second Mile” comes from the Biblical verse Matthew 5:41: “If anyone forces you to go one mile, go with them two miles”… Jerry Sandusky is the author of the books Developing Linebackers the Penn State Way (1981), 101 Linebacker Drills (1997) and the memoir Touched (2000).

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