Jay Paterno

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Jay Paterno
Sport(s) Football
Biographical details
Born State College, Pennsylvania
Playing career
1986–1990 Penn State
Position(s) Quarterback
Coaching career (HC unless noted)
Virginia (GA)
Connecticut (WR/TE)
James Madison (QB)
Penn State (TE/RC)
Penn State (QB)

Joseph Vincent "Jay" Paterno, Jr.[1] is an American football coach who was most recently the passing game coordinator and quarterbacks coach for the Penn State Nittany Lions football team and his father Joe Paterno, former head coach of the team. Also active in politics, Paterno unsuccessfully sought the Democratic Party nomination for Lieutenant Governor of Pennsylvania in 2014.[2][3]

Playing career[edit]

Paterno played on the Penn State Nittany Lions football team from 1986-1990 under his father Joe Paterno. He was a reserve quarterback during his senior year, in which he lettered.

Coaching career[edit]

Paterno was on Penn State's staff for 17 seasons, 12 of which he has served as the quarterbacks coach. Previously, Paterno served as the tight ends coach and recruiting coordinator. Prior to being on the PSU staff, he served as a graduate assistant at Virginia from 1990-92, Wide Receivers and Tight Ends Coach at Connecticut in 1993, and as the quarterbacks coach at James Madison in 1994.[4] Paterno's coaching career at Penn State came to an end following the hiring of new head coach Bill O'Brien on January 7, 2012.

After Penn State[edit]

Since his father's death and his dismissal, Paterno has written several guest columns, including this one. Paterno's coaching was indirectly criticized by former Penn State quarterback Matt McGloin, who said, in reference to the new coaching staff: "They're just teaching us the right way how to play the game of football and the right way to play quarterback. We've never had anything like that before here."[5] He has spoken at several young voters rallies including one in one sponsored by PSU Votes, a nonpartisan political initiative where both he and Penn State women's basketball coach Coquese Washington spoke.[6]

Personal life[edit]

Jay has four siblings: Diana, Mary Kay, David, and Scott. Unlike his late father, who was a staunch Republican, Jay is a Democrat, and supported Barack Obama during the 2008 and 2012 presidential elections.[7]

In October 2013, several outlets reported that Paterno was considering running as a Democrat in Pennsylvania's 5th congressional district, which is based in State College.[8] Instead, Paterno announced in February 2014 that he would be a candidate for Lieutenant governor of Pennsylvania in the 2014 election.[9] Ultimately, he withdrew from the race in March 2014, citing the desire to avoid a legal battle over a challenge to his petition to achieve ballot access.[3]


  1. ^ "Jay Paterno". Penn State Football. Retrieved 11 November 2011. 
  2. ^ http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/02/20/jay-paterno-lieutenant-governor_n_4825165.html
  3. ^ a b "Paterno Drops Out Of Lt. Gov. Race". PoliticsPA. 28 March 2014. Retrieved 3 April 2014. 
  4. ^ "Jay Paterno". Penn State Football. Retrieved 12 November 2011. 
  5. ^ Scarcella, Rich. "Memo to McGloin: Past is past". Reading Eagle. Retrieved 14 October 2012. 
  6. ^ Nichols, Laura. "Jay Paterno, Coquese Washington Rally Young Voters". State College, PA. 
  7. ^ "Jay Paterno jumps into politics". NCAAF Truth and Rumors. Retrieved 12 November 2011. 
  8. ^ Isenstadt, Alex. Joe Paterno’s son looks at run for Congress. The Politico, 2013-10-24.
  9. ^ Foster, Brittany (20 February 2014). "Jay Paterno To Run For Lt. Gov.". PoliticsPA. Retrieved 22 February 2014.