In Disturbing Interview, Jerry Sandusky Claims His Innocence

The former Penn State assistant coach says he shouldn't have showered with young boys, but says it wasn't sexual.

Posted: 11/15/2011 08:57 AM EST

In perhaps one of the most disturbing interviews ever, disgraced former Penn State assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky did little to help himself or convince anyone of his innocence during an interview with Bob Costas late Monday night.


Sandusky is accused of molesting eight boys over a 15-year span with some of the alleged sexual abuse taking place at the school’s football facilities.


Sandusky, 67, granted his first interview to Costas on NBC News’ Rock Center since grand jury indictment was handed down more than a week ago. Sandusky had only previously claimed his innocence through his attorney Joseph Amendola.


Based on how Sandusky explained his actions Monday night, he would be wise to allow his attorney to speak on his behalf going forward. We all cringed as Sandusky denied ever having any sexual contact with the boys from his foundation, the Second Mile, but admitted to showering with boys, touching their legs and hugging them.


The most poignant moment came Monday when Costas point blank asked Sandusky if he is sexually attracted to underage boys.


There was a long awkward pause followed by an even more awkward reply.


“Sexually attracted, no,” Sandusky responded slowly. “I enjoy young people, I love to be around them, but, no, I’m not sexually attracted to young boys.”


But there seems to be a mountain of evidence that says otherwise, including at least two eyewitness reports from men who saw him in compromising positions with boys at the Nittany Lions athletic facilities.


He has been indicted on 40 counts of molestation for the eight boys but The New York Times is reporting that as many 10 more boys are ready to come forward with claims of sexual abuse against Sandusky.


“I am innocent of those charges,” Sandusky said. “… I could say that I have done some of those things. I have horsed around with kids. I have showered after workouts. I have hugged them, and I have touched their legs without intent of sexual contact.”


The allegations have already wreaked havoc on the Penn State campus and the football program. Three administrators, including the university president, have lost their jobs and legendary football coach Joe Paterno was also ousted last week after 64 years of service because none of the men reacted properly or humanely when presented with credible evidence of Sandusky’s sexual abuse years ago.


Paterno, the all-time winningest coach in NCAA history, was dealt one more slap because of this whole episode when the Big Ten announced Monday it is removing his name from the conference’s football championship trophy.


Contact Terrance Harris at or follow him on Twitter @Terranceharris

(Photo: AP)