We have been inundated with opinions regarding the possible penalties that could or should be given to Penn State as a result of the 14 year cover up of child sex abuse that happened within the university’s football facilities and elsewhere by Jerry Sandusky along with clear knowledge and non-reporting of it happening by Joe Paterno, Gary Schultz, Tim Curley and President Gary Spanier.
Those opinions on punishment have ranged from the NCAA washing their hands of the responsibility of oversight by doing nothing because “It is a criminal matter not a football issue” to the NCAA giving PSU a five year death penalty and a 14 year bowl ban. Both are ridiculous in their extremes. Something is going to happen here and we await their decision.
Here is an article that lists four alternatives other than the Death Penalty. Sorry, but I read these and it makes my skin crawl with the preemptive assumtions that PSU somehow deserves lienency.
“Realistically, there is no form of justice the NCAA has the authority to hand down that could rectify the horrors that unfolded for the victims of Jerry Sandusky; the major players in the case have either passed away or are already, or may soon, face trial, leaving behind only a shattered shell of what once was Happy Valley.
To impose the Death Penalty on Penn State would not only punish those left behind, but potentially cause economic chaos in a town driven greatly by the existence of the Penn State football program. “
Huh, “the shattered shell of what once was Happy Valley“. Well, he certainly knows how to turn a phrase as well as turn his back from the actual perpetrators in this case which is the University administration, you know, the guys who were mandated to actually live the ethical lives they espoused in public. Sandusky was just the public criminal face of the horrors and to deflect either blame or punishment from where it also rightfully lies is only perpetrating the damage.
“Realistically, there is no form of justice the NCAA has the authority to hand down…” Really? Does he somehow miss the fact that as a voluntary membership organization they certainly do ‘have the right‘ to impose any punishments they see fit. Of course on the flip side PSU has the right to appeal the punishment, not accept the punishment and withdraw from the NCAA or file suit against the NCAA. There are always options in business matters when it comes to group organization.
By and large the most common answer I’ve read about what the NCAA should do is a loss of bowl games, usually four years worth, and allowing the “innocent” PSU players to transfer without a loss of a year’s eligibility.
I have to shake my head at this thought and try to keep my anger level down.
Four years without a bowl game would mean just about zero impact for PSU in the long run. It would be business as usual with one less game per year. As the author above states “A season without a bowl bid can often feel empty; no fancy trip, no national TV audience, no relevancy in the national spotlight.”
Cry me a friggin’ river. The Penn State family would feel empty, with no fancy trip. God, if this isn’t the worst bit of football-centric self serving tripe I’ve every read… but it gets worse when he talks about a television ban.
“TV is a powerful marketing tool and the NCAA could use it as a way to hurt Penn State without giving them the Death Penalty. No TV contracts, no prime time Whiteouts…
Oh hell, can’t do without prime time whiteouts, can we? What he really means is that the rabid PSU fans won’t be able to force that now vomit inducing chant “We Are… Penn State” down national TV audience’s throats for a year.
So, they would perhaps not make their normal $53M per year but would still rake in a ton of money from conference bowl money shares and gate receipts.
PSU would not change their ways one iota with those penalties. However, they might just have to strap themselves into their chairs to keep from falling on the floor laughing after hearing that decision from the NCAA.
I also ask that with any sanctions other than the Death Penalty why should the NCAA allow PSU players to transfer when they haven’t allowed it in other, less serious, cases? If the NCAA does evoke the slap on the wrist bowl ban for four years is telling a player that he’ll have 48 games in four years vice 52 some sort of life crippling punishment for that kid? No, it isn’t and there shouldn’t be exceptions made for them.
Those kids will choose to remain at PSU or they will not. Each one of them already has the option to leave the PSU program and either transfer to a lower division and play immediately or sit out a year and play D1 football. It is done every year by D1 players and none of them have had to have therapy because of it. In all honesty for most of those players on that roster it would actually mean more playing time in the long run.
Should the players not exercise that option then they play one less game a year. Again, big friggin’ deal. Good God – that would put them in the same predicament that over 50% of D1 schools are in each single season!
Let’s cut to the chase here and get brutally honest.
Sometimes life rears its ugly head and people get hurt even though they had nothing to do with the central issue. This is one of those cases. But every PSU player, every PSU fan and every small business in Happy Valley tied their futures to PSU’s coat tails knowing full well that they did so.
In doing so they placed themselves in harm’s way should PSU falter or fail. PSU failed in its basest duties and that is just a fact. It is too bad for them it happened I suppose but that truly is how life sometimes plays out.
Ask anyone who has been laid off, ask anyone whose apartment has burnt down due to to negligence of others living close by, ask anyone whose retirement investments in companies whose stock prices tumbled because the SEC levied sanctions against it or there was fraud perpetrated.
This sort of thing happens every single day in America and only now, through some false romantic visions of college football, these ‘innocents’ should be immune to life’s vagaries?
If you truly believe that then click your ruby slippers together three times and say ‘There’s no place like home…” Especially if home is Happy Valley apparently.
Nothing short of a Death Penalty stopping the football program in its tracks for at least one season along the with post-ban effects and public humiliation that ensues from that would make any difference at all. Other than that the Penn State apologists will wail and gnash their teeth, all the while thumbing their noses at anyone outside their cracked ramparts.