Penn State’s potential Sandusky coverup involves prominent sports figures, including the athletic director and a legendary coach. This scandal, however, is not a sports or a football story. It is an academic and legal one. Calls for the NCAA to get involved with Penn State and to exact penalties on the football program are misguided.
The NCAA is not an ultimate arbiter. It is a regulatory body for sports rules. It polices summer jobs, supplementary textbooks and bagel toppings. It determines the value of a night spent on a football player’s futon. It struggles to do that equitably, competently and in a timely fashion. A child molestation coverup and criminal activity is outside and beyond the organization’s purview. The NCAA does not “have to do something.” This would be like the EPA fining a company found guilty of fraud and embezzlement.
Appropriate authorities will mete out punishment. Sandusky will never leave prison. The University itself likely will be saddled with a civil settlement, potentially worth nine figures. The individuals still with us are facing criminal charges or likely to face criminal charges. This is being handled. Flying in with NCAA violations and competitive penalties would just be blind vengeance.
In an ideal world, Penn State itself would reevaluate the role of Division I-A football related to its academic mission. In the practical one, eliminating the football program or placing it in suspended animation, would mean the de facto end to intercollegiate athletics. It student-athletes who weren’t even on campus when this happened and did nothing wrong.
After the initial shock, Penn State has been doing what it should: cleaning house, handing over documents and behaving in a proactive, forthright fashion. This is bigger than football. It is being handled by the proper authorities. The NCAA finding some specious reasoning to pile on for PR purposes would be silly and egregious.
Previously: Penn State Emails Show Obvious Cover-Up Attempt of Sandusky Shower Rape in 2001
Previously: Jerry Sandusky Will Still Receive His $59,000 Per Year Pension in Prison
Previously: Sandusky Attorney Joe Amendola Was a Barrel of Laughs Right After the Verdict
[Photo via Presswire]