In a conference call Thursday night, Penn State trustees asked Erickson for an update on the statue. Erickson replied that he is continuing his outreach, and he invited board members to share their thoughts with him, either on the call or privately, a trustee told The Associated Press. The trustee spoke Friday on condition of anonymity because the board discussion was private.
On the same call, trustees learned that former board Chairman Steve Garban had tendered his resignation.
Garban was harshly criticized over his handling of the Sandusky scandal, and last week's explosive report by Freeh significantly increased the pressure on him to resign with its revelation that Garban knew that Sandusky, Curley and Schultz were about to be charged, but failed to alert the entire board.
Garban's resignation letter contained no apology. It said that Garban had ''devoted'' his adult life to Penn State, but his continued presence on the board had ''become a distraction'' as the school tries to move forward from the Sandusky scandal.
His resignation leaves vacant one of the nine alumni seats on the 32-member board. The board's bylaws empower Chairwoman Karen Peetz to appoint a replacement to fill Garban's unexpired term. She also has the option of leaving it vacant until the regular election next spring. Peetz did not immediately return a phone message seeking comment Friday.
Anne D. Neal, president of the American Council of Trustees and Alumni, a group that pushes for strong trustee leadership, said Garban's resignation should have come a long time ago.
As a former university vice president and treasurer who reported to Spanier, Garban failed to exercise oversight, she said.
''Steve Garban underscores one of the central problems of the Penn State Board - the insularity and lack of independence!'' she said via email. ''Boards shouldn't be a revolving door for university employees.''
Garban did not immediately return a phone message.