PSU receiver Deon Butler tries to shake Wisconsin’s Aubrey Pleasant and Allen Langford. Butler finished with seven catches for 96 yards, including his first scoring catch of the season.Fred Adams /the times leader
STATE COLLEGE – A day after senior tailback Austin Scott was charged with rape and a total of four felonies and three misdemeanors, coach Joe Paterno angrily refused comment on the situation.
According to Penn State sports information, Scott is still on the roster but has not worked in any capacity with the team since the alleged incident occurred in the early morning hours on Oct. 5.
Scott did not dress for the second consecutive game and Paterno reacted strongly when asked if Scott’s status with the team had changed following Penn State’s 38-7 win over Wisconsin.
“I don’t want to get into that,” Paterno said. “We just won a football game, OK? You guys want to talk about all that other stuff. I’m not going to even make a comment on it.
“And I’m annoyed. It’s as simple as that. I had a bunch of kids that played a good football game today against a good team. That’s what I thought we ought to talk about.”
Scott was suspended indefinitely by the team at the end of last week, citing an unspecified violation of team rules. Paterno said during his Tuesday press conference that Scott would not play against the Badgers.
Paterno also said at that press conference that he was looking into the possible involvement of some of his players in a fight last weekend.
He did not elaborate after Saturday’s game, but there were two regular contributors – sophomore wide receiver Chris Bell and sophomore defensive tackle Phil Taylor – who didn’t see the field against Wisconsin. Both were in uniform.
“They’re a little bit in my doghouse for a while,” Paterno said. “We’ll see.”
In addition, starting defensive tackle Chris Baker did not see the field in the first quarter, replaced by an ailing Ollie Ogbu. Baker came on the field for the start of the second quarter.
Special teams gunner and reserve cornerback Knowledge Timmons did not play in the first half.
“Without getting into the details of all the things that happened ... we had a couple of problems and we knew that,” Paterno said. “We talked it out and decided on a couple of things and as I’ve said from day one, they’re basically a good group of kids and basically they have a chance to be a good football team.
“They’re not there yet, but they have a chance. I think they know that.”
If Wisconsin had any shot at all of turning the tide Saturday, it likely disappeared in the first two minutes of the second quarter.
With a first-and-10 from the Wisconsin 29, quarterback Anthony Morelli dropped back from center and quickly pump-faked to his left. The deception was enough to freeze Wisconsin corner Allen Langford and allow Deon Butler to run unobstructed toward the end zone.
Morelli reached back and launched a rope to Butler, who dove to make the grab for a touchdown, his first of the season, and give Penn State a 17-7 lead.
The play was eerily similar to a TD Butler caught against the Badgers in Beaver Stadium in 2005, another decisive Penn State win.
“Oh my goodness, I’ve been waiting for that,” Butler said with a laugh. “It’s just a good feeling to be back in that end zone.”
Sophomore rush end Jerome Hayes had to be helped off the field after covering a punt near the end of the third quarter. Two people had to help carry him, as Hayes was unable to put weight on his right leg.
“It doesn’t look good right now,” defensive coordinator Tom Bradley said. “I’m sure we’ll hear more (Sunday).”