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Ex-PSU assistants to get $4.4 M in severance

STATE COLLEGE, Pa. -- Penn State will pay out a total of roughly $4.4 million in severance to more than a half-dozen assistants who weren't retained by new head coach Bill O'Brien.

Acting Athletic Director David Joyner said Friday the status of the assistant coaches who aren't coming back from former coach Joe Paterno's staff hasn't been finalized. Some may choose to retire, others could seek different jobs at Penn State or move on.

Joyner spoke after Penn State's Board of Trustees met Friday. He told trustees the severance payout will contribute to a projected net budget loss of $5 million for the upcoming year.

Joyner said the severance figure does not include Paterno, who was ousted in November in the aftermath of child sex abuse charges against retired defensive coordinator Jerry Sandusky.

O'Brien retained defensive line coach Larry Johnson and linebackers coach Ron Vanderlinden from Paterno's staff.

Another member of Paterno's staff, Mike McQueary, remains on administrative leave, Joyner said. He's a key prosecution witness against Sandusky, who is out on bail and awaiting trial after denying the charges initially filed Nov. 5

Paterno announced he was retiring effective the end of the 2011 season on the morning of Nov. 9 before trustees ousted him about 12 hours later. In recent weeks, trustees have said they intend to honor his contract as if he did retire at the end of 2011. Paterno also retains tenured faculty status.