No one would fault players, who committed no crime, expressing pride and connection to their university, even though the greater significance to their statement is the 60 or so players that did not show up for it. Legacy seniors for 2012 are great. The more significant question is what happens to the freshmen and sophomores with three or four years of eligibility remaining.
The players are reacting naturally and in some sense admirably, though this sentiment supports the criticism of the NCAA getting involved initially and getting involved and not imposing a death penalty. The NCAA’s heavy-handed response took a story well beyond football and made it about football. Penn State’s story is no longer a story about horrifying crime, victims and corruption. This story will be about finding the “true Penn Staters.” It will be about suffering, endurance and rallying through an imposed crisis, rather than rebirth and sober reflection.
Intending to break down the prideful football culture that facilitated a callous act, the NCAA will only end up fortifying it.
As for transfers, Silas Redd is said to be considering joining USC’s national title run. Todd Graham thinks two Penn State linebackers should break a previous commitment in Pennsylvania to join him at Arizona State. Shocking. Penn State also just announced no players will be attending Big Ten media days. Previously, three players were set to attend. Coincidence?