Joseph V. Paterno Award established by Maxwell Football Club

March 05, 2010

University Park, Pa.  -- The contributions of Penn State's Joe Paterno will be annually recognized by the Maxwell Football Club, which Friday (March 5) announced the creation of the Joseph V. Paterno Award.

The announcement was made by the Maxwell Club hours before of its 73rd Annual Awards Banquet in Atlantic City, N.J. The Maxwell Club presents 13 high school, college and professional football awards each year at its black-tie dinner.

"I'm deeply honored," Paterno stated. "The Maxwell Club is one of the great organizations nationally for college football and all levels of the game They have contributed tremendously to our game by recognizing many of the people who have made an impact in football. The Maxwell Club has been a real asset for many years in promoting the game of football in greater Philadelphia and throughout Pennsylvania."

The specific criteria for the Joseph V. Paterno Award is in the development stage. The recipient will be a college football coach, with the selection criteria including the impact the coach has had on his university, student-athletes in the program, community and state. The recipient will be chosen by a selection committee to be determined by the Maxwell Club.

Paterno is a previous recipient of two of the Maxwell Club's awards. The Hall of Fame mentor won the George Munger Award, presented to the college football coach of the year, in 1990, 1994 and 2005. Paterno was presented the Reds Bagnell Award for contributions to the game of football in 1999

Paterno concluded his 60th season on the Penn State coaching staff by extending his Football Bowl Subdivision record to 394 career victories with a 19-17 win over LSU in the Capital One Bowl on New Year's Day. He owns an all-time mark of 394-129-3 and his 75.2 winning percentage is second-best among active coaches with at least 10 years as an FBS head coach.

A 2007 Hall of Fame inductee, Paterno is preparing for his 45th season as head coach of the Nittany Lions. The all-time leader in bowl victories (24) and appearances (36), his 68.0 bowl winning percentage (24-11-1 mark) is first all-time among coaches with at least 15 post-season appearances, The Nittany Lions are 17-7 in New Year's bowls under Paterno.

Paterno has led Penn State to national championships in 1982 and '86, five unbeaten and untied seasons (1968, '69, '73, '86, '94) and 15 seasons with at least 11 victories, including three in the past five years. He is college football's all-time leader in 10-win (21 years) and 11-win seasons.

A 1950 graduate of Brown University, Paterno has led Penn State to 23 Top 10 finishes in the final polls, also a record for a major college coach. The Nittany Lions were ranked No. 8 in the final 2009 USA Today Coaches poll and No. 9 in the Associated Press poll.

Paterno also has seen more than 350 of his players sign NFL contracts, and produced 77 first team All-Americans, 44 ESPN The Magazine Academic All-Americans (34 first team), 15 National Football Foundation Hall of Fame Scholar Athletes and 18 NCAA Postgraduate Scholarship winners during his legendary career. Penn State has had 12 Academic All-Americans over the past four seasons (10 first-team), leading the nation in each of the past two years (five in 2008, three in 2009).

Under Paterno's leadership, Penn State led all teams ranked in the final 2009 AP poll with an 89 percent federal graduation rate and an 85 percent Graduation Success Rate, according to NCAA data released in November, 2009.

A native of Brooklyn, N.Y., Paterno was inducted into the National Football Foundation and College Hall of Fame in 2007, becoming one of three active coaches to gain induction at the time. He was selected the American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) National Coach of the Year for an unprecedented fifth time in 2005. Paterno also has been selected the Big Ten-Dave McClain Coach of the Year three times, second only to Michigan's Bo Schembechler (four times).

Paterno and his wife, Sue, have contributed more than $4 million to Penn State for multiple academic and athletic building projects and to endow scholarships and faculty positions. In 2009, the Paternos pledged $1 million to the Mount Nittany Medical Center in State College to assist with a 42,000-square foot expansion of the region's primary medical facility.

Joe and Sue Paterno have been actively involved with the Special Olympics Pennsylvania Summer Games, held each June on the University Park campus. In 2008, the Paternos were inducted into the Special Olympics Pennsylvania Hall of Fame.

  • Joe Paterno

    IMAGE: Penn State Sports Information

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Last Updated November 18, 2010