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409: Paterno College Football’s Winningest Coach

Joe Paterno is once again college football’s winningest coach.

With the NCAA’s announcement today that it reached a settlement agreement in the lawsuit brought forth by State Senator Jake Corman and Treasurer Rob McCord, Paterno’s 111 vacated wins were restored. His 409 career head coaching victories are the most all-time in Division 1 football.

The consent decree had struck all of Paterno’s wins from 1998 through 2011. In 1998, police initially began investigating complaints towards Jerry Sandusky.

The NCAA not only restored Paterno’s 111 wins today, they also restored one more. Tom Bradley, who served as the head coach for Penn State’s final 2011 victory, had his lone head coaching win restored as well.

The vacation of Paterno’s 111 wins was met with much scrutiny, from Penn State loyalists to opposing coaches. Even Bobby Bowden, who also had wins vacated at Florida state and whose 377 wins are third all time, stood up for Paterno after reassessing earlier statements immediately following the announcement of the NCAA’s sanctions on Penn State.

In a statement released right after the restoration, the Paterno family called Friday a “great victory.”

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Ben Berkman

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