Fearing for his safety, Penn State board wants McQueary ‘off the field’

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At his press conference earlier today, interim head coach Tom Bradley stated that Mike McQueary would be performing his normal coaching duties at the Nittany Lions’ 2011 home finale Saturday.

The school’s board of trustees, however, has other ideas.

An unnamed trustee told the Allentown Morning Call Thursday that the board has requested Bradley keep McQueary, the team’s wide receivers coach, off the field for Saturday’s game against Nebraska.  It’s unclear what “off the field” means in this case; is the trustee talking about McQueary coaching from the press box instead of the sidelines, or not coaching period?

We’ve sent an email to Penn State officials seeking clarification on McQueary’s status.

The trustee did tell the Morning Call that the board does not plan on firing McQueary or asking him to step down.  McQueary, who’s come under intense criticism in recent days, testified in front of a grand jury in January that he witnessed former defensive coordinator Jerry Sandusky sodomizing a 10-year-old boy in the showers of the Lasch football building in 2002.  Instead of calling law enforcement, McQueary called his father and then took the information to Joe Paterno the next day.

Nobody associated with the university forwarded that information on to either the school’s police force or local law enforcement.

“The fact that someone saw something wrong and did not take the time to ask the right questions, that’s the part it all goes back on,” the trustee said, adding about Paterno in particular, “Either he knew about it and brushed it under the rug, or he didn’t ask enough questions.

In addition to the news on McQueary, the trustee also said the board considered allowing Paterno to coach this Saturday’s game.  The attention and scrutiny that would have drawn, however, led to the decision to fire the long-time coach immediately.