Outside Beaver Stadium in State College, Pa., sits a statue showing the late Joe Paterno  in mid-stride, a smile on his face and his finger in the air.

After his death, the statue became a memorial with fans leaving behind flowers and other items to pay homage to their beloved coach.

Today, after the release of Louis Freeh’s report showing that Paterno and other Penn State leaders were aware of the sexual abuses occurring in their locker room and on their campus, an important question has been discussed — should Penn State remove this tribute?

''In order to avoid the consequences of bad publicity, the most powerful leaders at the university — (former president Graham) Spanier, (former vice president Gary) Schultz, Paterno and (former athletic director Timothy) Curley — repeatedly concealed critical facts relating to Sandusky's child abuse,'' the report said.

If the university chooses to do so, surely it would be without any pomp. It would be a somber occasion, showing that Penn State, which used to boast having Paterno as its icon, now would like to distance itself from the old coach as much as possible.