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Judge sets Oct. 29 date in Paterno family lawsuit

| Wednesday, Aug. 21, 2013, 5:12 p.m.

BELLEFONTE — A judge has scheduled an Oct. 29 hearing in the lawsuit filed by the family of former Penn State football coach Joe Paterno against the NCAA over penalties it imposed on the school amid the Jerry Sandusky child sex abuse scandal.

Judge John Leete said in an order that he would hear arguments on preliminary objections filed by defendants in the case, court officials announced Wednesday. The order also established a schedule for the Paterno family and other plaintiffs to reply to the objections.

The NCAA penalized the schools for its response to complaints about the former Paterno assistant and imposed a $60 million fine, a four-year bowl ban, a loss of scholarships and the elimination of 112 Paterno-era wins.

The order also said the hearing will not address issues involving the court's jurisdiction over claims against NCAA president Mark Emmert and former executive committee chairman Edward Ray as individuals. The judge said he would deal with those issues later, if necessary.

NCAA's lawyers have argued that the plaintiffs didn't assert any facts that suggest the two men “maintain continuous and systematic contacts” with the state of Pennsylvania. Emmert and Ray are also named as defendants in their official capacities.

Sandusky, 69, is serving a decades-long prison sentence after being convicted last year of child molestation. Paterno died in January 2012, two months after he was removed as head coach following the arrests of Sandusky, athletic director Tim Curley and vice president Gary Schultz.

Curley, Schultz and former Penn State president Graham Spanier await trial on allegations they illegally covered up complaints about Sandusky.

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