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Penn State athletics head who came in after Sandusky scandal to retire

NEW YORK (Reuters) - The man who took over the Penn State athletic program when it was rocked by child sex abuse charges involving an assistant football coach will retire in August, the university said in a statement on Tuesday.

David Joyner, a Penn State graduate and member of its board of trustees, was named acting athletic director in November 2011, shortly after Jerry Sandusky was charged with sexually abusing boys he met through his charity for disadvantaged children.

Sandusky was convicted the following year on 45 counts of child sex abuse for molesting 10 boys over 15 years, some in the football team's showers on campus.

Soon after, the NCAA, the organization that regulates U.S. college sports, vacated 14 years worth of victories the team racked up under coach Joe Paterno, among other penalties and fines.

Penn State's current president, Eric Barron, applauded Joyner for providing "steady leadership to Athletics for nearly three years."

In a statement, Joyner said: "The spirit of Penn State is strong and the department's commitment to integrity, as well as academic and athletic excellence, is stronger than ever."

A previous Penn State athletic director, Tim Curley, is one of three former university officials facing charges he lied to a grand jury by saying they were unaware of a 1998 allegation that Sandusky showered with a boy.

Former Penn State president Graham Spanier and former vice president Gary Schultz are facing similar charges.

The scandal also led to the dismissal of Paterno, one of the most successful coaches in college football. He died in January 2012 of lung cancer at age 85.

(Reporting By Edith Honan; Editing by Bill Trott)

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