ESPN’s 90-minute special Difference Makers: Life Lessons with Paterno & Krzyzewski – featuring an in-depth and candid discussion with legendary Penn State football coach Joe Paterno and Duke men’s basketball coach Mike Krzyzewski – will air Thursday, June 30, at 8 p.m. ET on ESPN and continue on ESPNU at 9 p.m.
ESPN college football and basketball studio and game announcer Rece Davis hosts the special, which was recorded on Monday, June 20 in front of an audience at Eisenhower Auditorium on the campus of Penn State. Participants include guests who have had personal experiences with each coach: Matt Millen and Michael Robinson, who played for Coach Paterno, and Jay Bilas and Jay Williams, who played for Coach Krzyzewski.
The special explores coaching, ethics, integrity, friendship, legacy, pressures and issues associated with intercollegiate athletics, working with student-athletes, and more. The program includes questions from the audience during the first hour on ESPN and audience member questions for the entire final 30 minutes on ESPNU.
Quotes from Difference Makers: Life Lessons with Paterno & Krzyzewski:
Paterno on the challenges of NCAA rules compliance: “I broke a rule the other day. We have an indoor place and the kids were working out. I walk by, stood there and watched them work out. Didn’t talk to anybody or anything. I go back in the office and said to the staff, you know, so-and-so looked pretty good running. (A staffer said) ‘Where’d you see him? You know you broke the rule.'”
Krzyzewski on why he stayed at Duke: “I’ve never made a career decision based on money. I’ve always made it for where I’ve had a passion, where I could feel good about it, and then you make money. But I love college sports and I love Duke.”
Paterno on being an icon: “Tell me what is an icon? If you mean some good looking handsome (guy), I like it!”
Krzyzewski on his greatest moment of adversity: “Any day at practice with coach (Bob) Knight.” (Krzyzewski played for Knight at Army).
Paterno on teaching: “I got hooked on seeing what some kids lacked, that I thought ‘gee, you know what? I know better than that.’ Maybe I didn’t, but I thought I did. And I stuck my two cents in a lot of people’s lives, and at the time, I thought I was gonna get punched in the mouth!”
Krzyzewski on involving his daughters in the program: “If you ask our players, they’ll tell you that they’re like sisters. They BETTER only be sisters!”
Paterno on what makes a great teacher: “A lot of different things, a lot of different ways to teach, a lot of different people have different personalities. I think a conviction that you have as a person that you think would be appropriate for young people looking for somebody to give them some direction. I think a good teacher has some empathy towards that. Tries to find out exactly if a kid has a problem, if he doesn’t have a problem. I think there are different types of people that need different responses. Sometimes you have to kick them in the rear end, other times you have to stroke them, other times give them a big kiss.”