LOS ANGELES -- Penn State coach Joe Paterno just told a roomful of reporters that he's going to coach from the press box for tomorrow's Rose Bowl matchup with Southern Cal.
"I'm going to be upstairs," Paterno said. "I don't think I can handle three and a half-four hours on the sideline."
The 82-year-old coach had hip replacement surgery on Nov. 24 and had been trying to recover in time to get back to his usually perch on the sidelines. Paterno had been forced to watch the game from the coaches' box for the final seven games of the season due to his ailing right hip.
A few days ago, Paterno met with Pete Carroll, and the USC coach asked Paterno if was going to be able to down on the field.
"I said, 'I think I'm probably going to be upstairs," Paterno recalled. "But if you would agree not to throw the ball more than 15-18 times, and we get that game over less than three hours, I'll be on the sideline.
"Pete said, 'If I see you on the sideline, we're going to throw it 50 times.'"
Paterno said that he would likely be down on the field before the game and could lead his team out before kickoff. He was also going to check the logistics to see if he could go down to Penn State's locker room at halftime. More than likely, however, he'll stay in the press box until the end of the game.