Franco Harris said today that while he has doubts about the Freeh Report, he would be willing to change his opinion of Joe Paterno based on that report as well as other information that might be revealed in future trials of Penn State officials.
Harris, who just returned from a trip to Texas, said he has only caught pieces of information about the Freeh Report from ESPN and CNN and has not yet had a chance to comb through the information released Thursday morning on Paterno and other Penn State officials.
"Oh, oh, sure. Yeah. As I said, we just want the truth," he said about changing his opinion on Paterno. "I don't think it's complete yet."
Harris, the former Steeler and Penn State football star who played for Paterno from 1969-71, was one of the coach's staunchest defenders when the Penn State Board of Trustees fired Paterno in November 2011 in the wake of the child sex abuse scandal involving Jerry Sandusky.
"There's some players in this who are still very, very important, who were a part of this all.. . . ," Harris said in an interview in his office in McCandless. "I'm just not making a decision and I'm definitely not making a decision based on the Freeh Report."
Harris said he questioned the integrity of the Freeh Report after emails from Penn State officials were leaked prior to the reports's release. One of those emails indicated that Paterno played a role in a decision not to notify authorities of a report that Sandusky assaulted a young boy in a locker room shower.
"I mean, they really lost me on the importance of it once they started doing things like that," Harris said of the leaked email. "They lost me as far as the integrity of it. What are they really trying to accomplish here?"