Penn State Punishment
I know what I think about former Coach Sandusky. He belongs in jail for sexually abusing young boys.
I understand the penalties imposed on Penn State University’s football program by the NCAA. However, it troubles me that other young men, the players, are victims of Sandusky in another sense; i.e., his actions resulted in damaging their athletic careers at Penn State.
No one has alleged that any players, past or present, had any knowledge of what Sandusky was doing. I don’t think he has coached there since 1998. The punishment is imposed upon the university’s football program because of evidence that Coach Paterno and school administrators who had reason to report Sandusky’s inappropriate showering habits decided to look the other way. By letting old Jerry continue for years, they allowed him to victimize many more young boys for years.
Football gave Jerry Sandusky access to his victims. Other than his connection to the Penn State football program, the crimes were not football related. Other programs have been punished for recruiting violations or breaking rules about benefits for players. Recently, Ohio State and Coach Tressel got in big trouble for players getting tatoos in exchange for used equipment. Ohio State did not endorse that, yet because Coach Tressel apparently had reason to know about it and did not blow the whistle, he lost his job.
Coach Tressel and Coach Paterno did not lose their jobs for anything they did as coaches, but rather for what they did not do. President Nixon did not lose his job for breaking into Watergate. He didn’t break in or approve of it. He lost it because of his knowledge after the fact and his involvement in a coverup. We can go further back. In the Old Testament, King David’s attempt to cover up his adultery resulted in harm to many as well as himself.
The Penn State football players were not part of a coverup. Unfortunately, it is impossible to punish the school without affecting the players, other students, and even the fans. The choice to avoid embarrassing good old Jerry turned out to not protect Jerry and damaged countless others. It is a sad, sad story.