Sales of Joe Paterno beer have exceeded early expectations

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The makers of the Joe Paterno beer didn't foresee the high demand for their product.

According to the Duquesne Brewing Company's Mark Dudash, the company expected to sell 500 barrels of the first run of the Paterno-themed beer by September. There have already been orders for 2,800 barrels.

The presales don't even account for Philadelphia and Pittsburgh. The beer hasn't been listed for sale there yet. It's set to be available in the third week of August.


"I've never seen anything like this, and I've been in the beer industry long time," Dudash said. "It just doesn't happen this easy. Something special is in the making. I just said to Jay [Paterno], 'There's a guardian angel up in heaven somewhere.' What's going on right now, it just doesn't happen. This thing is crazy."

The Paterno family collaborated with the brewery for the beer, which is a red lager. A manager of the store that's the beer's wholesaler said the beer will typically sell for $12-14 for a 12-pack, though it could be sold for more at places if there's deemed to be a demand for it as a collectible.

It will also be available at bars as well.

A depiction of Paterno is on the can along with his career number of wins (409), bowl wins (24), All-Americans and Academic All-Americans.

"Basically, it's a red lager with a mild caramel taste, very smooth," Dudash said. "We used 100 percent two-row barley. It gives you a really smooth taste with no aftertaste on your tongue.

"It's smooth as silk. It's not going to be overly hopped, but it's going to have a mild bite to it, just enough. It's going to be a very, very drinkable beer that you can just enjoy."

As part of the collaboration between the brewery and the family, a portion of the beer sales will go to a charity chosen by Sue Paterno.

Paterno was fired from his post as Penn State's coach in November 2011 in the midst of the Jerry Sandusky sex abuse scandal. He died in January 2012. The NCAA has restored all of the sanctions it levied against the university because of the scandal, including the restoration of Paterno's wins.

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Nick Bromberg is the assistant editor of Dr. Saturday on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at or follow him on Twitter!