Paterno was “blindsided” by a player running a drill but “walked away after the collision,” according to a statement released Monday by the team.
Paterno sustained a hairline fracture to his pelvis, sources told ESPN’s Chris Fowler.
But the 84-year-old coach was not expected to require surgery, said Dr. Wayne Sebastianelli, Penn State’s director of athletic medicine. A team spokesman said he would likely be released by Tuesday afternoon.
Paterno was taking notes when receiver Devon Smith, a 5-foot-7, 157-pound junior, ran into the coach.
Paterno walked off the field at the end of practice but was cornered by physicians who insisted he be examined.
Paterno conducted a coaches’ meeting Monday morning via speaker phone from Mount Nittany Medical Center, where he was undergoing tests.
“I expect to be back at practice soon. I’m doing fine; tell everyone not to worry about me,” Paterno said in a prepared statement. “I like the effort I have seen from the squad during our first few practices, but we have a long way to go to get ready for the schedule we have.”
“I expect to be back at practice soon. I’m doing fine; tell everyone not to worry about me”.
Penn State coach Joe Paterno
Paterno’s health has been a frequent issue in recent seasons.
Paterno suffered a hip injury in preseason practice in 2008 while demonstrating an onside kick and underwent hip-replacement surgery after the regular season.
He also suffered a broken leg and a damaged knee ligament in 2006 when a player ran into him during a game at Wisconsin.
The legendary coach said last month at Big Ten media days that his health is strong and he has been exercising regularly throughout the offseason. He’s entering his 46th season as Penn State’s coach this fall.