STATE COLLEGE, Pa. (AP) — Bill O’Brien says it’s an honor to follow the late Joe Paterno as Penn State’s next head coach.
In an interview Monday, O’Brien says he will create his own identity and that no one will ever replace Paterno, who won 409 games and two national championships.
Paterno died Sunday at age 85 just 65 days after his son Scott said his father had been diagnosed with lung cancer.
O’Brien says he never got to speak with Paterno in person following his hiring Jan. 7.
The two did talk by phone soon after O’Brien arrived. O’Brien says he wanted Paterno to know he would work hard to preserve the traditions of winning and academics in the new Penn State regime.