- TOP PLAYERSOffensePABLO S. TORRE | August 20, 2012
- TAMPA BAY buccaneersENEMY lines WHAT A RIVAL COACH SAYSJune 28, 2012
- Faces in the CrowdJune 11, 2001
Joe Paterno, 85
"My high school gave me an award for something, and it was a Don Quixote statue," Paterno said in 1980. "The Romantic period is my period, O.K.?" That fight-the-good-fight-no-matter-what attitude is what made Paterno's fall from grace in the Jerry Sandusky child abuse scandal so shocking: How could a man with such an ardent desire to not just believe in but also to bring out the best in everyone have played a role in enabling such a monster? How could a man who so famously undertook a Grand Experiment at Penn State to wed athletic excellence with success in the classroom be accused by a school trustee of "not meet[ing] his moral obligation"? But it happened, and Paterno's legacy, which for so long seemed unassailable, became hopelessly clouded. After graduating from Brown, he took a job as an assistant in State College to make some money before going to law school. He stayed for 62 seasons, the final 46 as head coach. Paterno won his record-setting 409th game on Oct. 29, 2011. It was the last game he coached. Seven days later Sandusky was arrested; when it was revealed that Paterno had only reported allegations of abuse to his superiors and not to the proper authorities, his position became untenable. Less than three months after being fired, Paterno died of lung cancer.
Harry Keough, 84
A St. Louis mailman, Keough played club soccer for a team sponsored by an undertaker. He made enough of an impression to earn a spot as a defender on the 1950 U.S. World Cup team, which knocked off England 1--0 in one of the biggest upsets in soccer history. Keough was still at the post office in '67 when Saint Louis hired him as coach; he led the Billikens to five NCAA titles.
Dwayne Schintzius, 43
Still the only player in SEC history with 1,000 points, 800 rebounds, 250 assists and 250 blocks, the 7'2" Schintzius was known for his well-kept mullet, a.k.a. the Lobster. He clashed with coaches at Florida and during his eight-year pro career; when a Spurs G.M. told him to cut his hair, Schintzius complied—and mailed him the clippings. He died of respiratory failure.
Doris Sams, 85
A pitcher turned outfielder in the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League, Sams—one of the inspirations for the film A League of Their Own—threw a perfect game five years before setting the single-season home run mark, with 12. A badminton and marbles champ as well, Sams talked her way into a tryout when she was 19 and was an All-Star in five of her eight seasons.
Marvin Miller, 95
His reaction when he first looked at a standard major leaguer's contract? It was, Miller said, "one of the worst labor documents I'd ever seen." He left the United Steelworkers of America to take over the players' association in 1966, and in 16 years earned his membership the unprecedented right to arbitration (which led to free agency) and a 12-fold increase in average salary.