BEAVERTON, Ore. -- The president of Nike Inc. said he has decided to change the name of the Joe Paterno Child Development Center, a child care facility at the company's headquarters.
CEO Mark Parker said Thursday he was deeply saddened by the news coming of the Louis Freeh investigation on the child sex abuse scandal at Penn State.
Freeh says Paterno and other top school officials disregarded the welfare of Jerry Sandusky's victims as they failed to report abuse allegations against the longtime assistant coach.
"I have been deeply saddened by the news coming out of this investigation at Penn State," Parker said in a prepared statement. "It is a terrible tragedy that children were unprotected from such abhorrent crimes. With the findings released today, I have decided to change the name of our child care center at our World Headquarters. My thoughts are with the victims and the Penn State community.
Nike founder Phil Knight also issued a statement. He had spoken at Paterno's funeral, getting a standing ovation for defending the coach in an emotional eulogy.
"Other than my parents, my college coach, Bill Bowerman, was the biggest influence in my life. Bill Bowerman and Joe Paterno shared some great qualities," Knight said.
"Throughout Joe Paterno’s career, he strived to put young athletes in a position to succeed and win in sport but most importantly in life. Joe influenced thousands of young men to become better leaders, fathers and husbands. According to the investigation, it appears Joe made missteps that led to heartbreaking consequences. I missed that Joe missed it, and I am extremely saddened on this day. My love for Joe and his family remains," Knight said in his prepared statement.