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Jerry Sandusky
Title Defensive coordinator
Sport Football
Born January 26, 1944(1944-01-26)
Place of birth Washington, Pennsylvania
Career highlights
Playing career
1963-1965 Penn State
Position Defensive end
Coaching career (HC unless noted)
Penn State (graduate assistant)
Juniata College (assistant)
Boston University (assistant)
Penn State (defensive line)
Penn State (linebackers)
Penn State (defensive coordinator)

Gerrald Arthur "Jerry" Sandusky (born January 26, 1944 in Washington, Pennsylvania)[1] is a retired American football coach. He served as an assistant coach for his entire career, mostly at Penn State University under Joe Paterno, and was one of the most notable major college football coaches to never have held a head coaching position. He was honored with Assistant Coach of the Year awards in 1986 and 1999.[2]

Sandusky played for Paterno at Penn State, starting at defensive end from 1963 to 1965. After graduating, Sandusky served as a graduate assistant under Paterno at Penn State in 1966, and then held assistant coaching positions at Juniata College (1967) and Boston University (1968). He returned to Penn State in 1969 and remained there as an assistant coach until his retirement at the end of the 1999 season. Sandusky served as defensive line coach in 1969, became linebacker coach in 1970, and was promoted to defensive coordinator in 1977, holding that position until his retirement. In his years as a linebacker coach and defensive coordinator he coached many outstanding defensive squads, and Penn State gained a reputation for outstanding linebacker play, producing 10 first-team All-Americans at that position, and acquiring the nickname "Linebacker U".

Sandusky spurned opportunities for head coaching positions, including one with the University of Maryland in 1991,[3] in the hope of succeeding Paterno as head coach at Penn State. But Paterno outlasted Sandusky, and is active as of the 2009 season at the age of 83.

His final game coaching at Penn State was a notable game for Sandusky. Penn State faced Texas A&M in the 1999 Alamo Bowl in San Antonio, Texas. Inspired to honor Sandusky, the defense produced an outstanding effort and the Nittany Lions shut out Texas A&M, 24-0, the only bowl game shutout victory for Penn State under Paterno. Sandusky was recognized in ways usually reserved for the head coach. He was doused with a water bucket and carried to the center of the field on the shoulders of his players.[4]

Since retirement, Sandusky has hosted many summer football camps and remains involved in The Second Mile, a children's charity he founded in State College, Pennsylvania in 1977.[5]His son, Jon Sandusky, continues Jerry's love for football and was promoted to Director of Pro Personnel for the Philadelphia Eagles on June 10, 2008.[6]


  1. ^ Hyman, J., 2006, Game of My Life Penn State: Memorable Stories of Nittany Lion Football, Sports Publishing
  2. ^ Sandusky Awarded Assistant Coach of the Year ::
  3. ^ Berkowitz, S. (1991-12-18). Laycock, Maryland Will Meet; Sandusky Bows Out As Coach Candidate. Washington Post
  4. ^ Football Letter: Alamo Bowl
  5. ^ Sandusky Second to None
  6. ^

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