Pannell and his teammates at Penn State had to bear witness to the bombshell sexual abuse allegations against former Penn State coach Jerry Sandusky. The fallout caused head coach Joe Paterno to be fired before the end of this past season in November 2011.
Paterno received continuing support from the students and players of Penn State throughtout the scandal until he passed away on January 22, 2012. I asked DeOn’tae his feelings about the man who many referred to as “Joe Pa”.
Pannell: I believe Joe will go down as still the best to ever walk the sideline. He was a mentor and father figure to many both on the field and off the field whether you were a player or coach. The problem’s of one person will not ruin one man’s legacy.
The Saints rookie mini-camp kicked off full speed this past week without any media being allowed access to any of the players or practices. I asked DeOn’tae what was the experience of the mini-camp like for him.
Pannell: Mini-camp was a bit overwhelming at first, but I think it was like that for all the rookies. Once we all were able to calm down and get to know each other, things became a lot smoother and it was a lot more fun and just playing football.