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Joe Paterno scolds player to pay $12.99, ‘A copy of this letter is going to your parents’

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(USA Today Sports Images)

A funny letter written by Joe Paterno to a former Penn State player in 1982 gives us this lesson: You did not cheat Paterno or Penn State out of $13, or there would be hell to pay.

The letter started making the rounds first from CBSSports.com, then on radio show host Dustin Fox's Instagram, then Deadspin. It was written following a Fiesta Bowl trip in the early '80s and is probably worse than any letter any of us have gotten from a bill collector over way more than the $12.99 Paterno is shaming the player into paying.

The extra money, for "phone calls, room service and miscellaneous charges," (all that for less than $13? Take us back to 1982), was apparently not paid despite multiple letters and pleas. The letter scolds the player that "you have taken advantage of an honest effort to treat you well," threatens to never give him a good job recommendation or never let him use Penn State's facilities, and basically that if he doesn't get in the habit of paying his bills he won't be a successful person later in life. All over $12.99.

Too bad Paterno wasn't as diligent about the Sandusky allegations as he was about unpaid $13 for room service.

The best part of the letter, sent to a player who is out of eligibility and presumably about 21 or 22 years old, is the final line: "P.S. A copy of this letter is going to your parents."

Here's the letter, from Fox's Instagram:

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