Rhetoric and the Art of a Joe Paterno Press Conference

October 7, 2009 at 11:15 am 1 comment

Mike Poorman ’82 teaches a class in the College of Communications called “Joe Paterno, Communications & the Media,” and its focus is exactly what the name implies. For obvious reasons, Mike only teaches the class during the fall semester, allowing the 60-some students in his class to crowd into the Beaver Stadium media room and take in a live Paterno press conference. Yesterday, his current class took its turn.

The topic that dominated a good chunk of this week’s media session was Penn State’s scheduling of lower-division opponent Eastern Illinois in what should amount to a mid-season walkover this Saturday at Beaver Stadium. A local beat writer put Joe on the spot about the scheduling decision, and Paterno responded with some prepared notes — if not a first, then certainly a rarity for the veteran coach. Poorman has covered a few hundred of Joe’s Tuesday pressers, so it’s notable when he points out that “there’s never been anything” quite like yesterday’s exchange.

Mike found it a terrific teaching opportunity, and he turned it into an enlightening column — including perspective on Joe’s rhetorical approach, and the text of that contentious play-by-play between Paterno and the reporter — all of which you can read here.

Ryan Jones, senior editor

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Entry filed under: Football, Joe Paterno. Tags: , , .

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1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. Jay Paterno Goes Back to Class « The Penn Stater Magazine  |  February 15, 2013 at 10:20 pm

    […] and longtime faculty member in the College of Communications, Mike created and taught the famous “JoePa” class, and he’s been tying the scandal into his teaching since the week the story broke. He […]

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