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Of the six kids Sandusky and his wife, Dottie, adopted, three were foster children who’d been in their care.

“You talk about the kind of great human beings there are as far as caring for people,” then-defensive line coach Joe Sarra said when Sandusky retired. “They don’t come much finer than that man.”

Those words have a different echo now.

“When I was there, coach Paterno was a great man and Coach Sandusky the same,” said Anthony Adams, who played defensive tackle at Penn State from 1999-02 and is now with the Chicago Bears. “It was a complete shock to me.”

Sandusky had long been expected to succeed Paterno, and he reportedly turned down jobs at Marshall, Temple and Maryland in hopes the aging coach would soon retire. But Paterno came to feel that Sandusky was spending too much of his time on The Second Mile, and he told his assistant around May 1999 that Sandusky would not be the next head coach at Penn State.

“Joe had said, `You can’t do both, you can’t have two masters,’” Paterno’s son, Scott, recalled earlier this week.

Sandusky cited his desire to devote more time to The Second Mile when he took early retirement following the 1999 season. But even though he was not particularly close with Paterno, he remained a familiar sight around the Penn State football complex. He was given an office in the East Area Locker building, across the street from the football building, as part of his retirement package, and would bring Second Mile kids around the football facilities.

“There were times where I was around his Second Mile kids, and to me what it seemed was a great program,” Scott said.

But the truth, the Pennsylvania attorney general said, is far more sordid.

Sandusky was a sexual predator, according to the indictment against him, using the foundation and his Penn State connections to prey on young boys. And, in two instances, the alleged assaults took place on Penn State property.

A janitor said he saw a boy about 11 to 13 pinned against a wall while Sandusky performed oral sex on him in fall 2000, the grand jury said. Two years later, then-graduate assistant Mike McQueary went to Paterno and reported seeing a naked Sandusky in the Penn State showers, sodomizing a boy of about 10.

“To everyone who continues to ask me about the report yes i have it but i wont read it,” Arrington said on Twitter. “Its like seeing a family member in a casket.”

Paterno notified the athletic director, Tim Curley, and a vice president, Gary Schultz, about what McQueary told him in 2002. Both have since been charged with failing to report the incident to the authorities.

Paterno was not accused of any legal wrongdoing. But he has been criticized for not doing more to stop Sandusky, with the state police commissioner calling it a lapse in “moral responsibility.” And Paterno himself said Wednesday he wished he’d done more, calling it “one of the great sorrows of my life.”

“To me, Joe Paterno is still a great man and he will always be a legend. Unfortunately his legacy will be tainted, obviously, by this,” said Paul Posluszny, a two-time All-American linebacker at Penn State who now plays for the Jacksonville Jaguars. “That’s unfortunate, but that’s the reality of the situation.”

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