Sunday, November 13, 2011
The Penn State saga....my thoughts
It was just a week ago, on a 5 minute ride on the bus shuttle from downtown Tuscaloosa to Bryant-Denny Stadium, that I read about the horror that was being uncovered in State College. Amazing things that technology can accomplish today, reading news articles from around the world any where at any time. Here it was the Game of the Century, LSU at Alabama, and it was being bumped off the front page due to a developing child abuse scandal at Penn State.
That ride through throngs of fans will not be forgotten as its the first I heard of this scandal. Likewise when the PSU Board of Trustees finally interrupted a live Temple Football broadcast on ESPN to announce they were firing Joe Paterno, those words sent chills down my spine, not once but several times later in even replay forms.
There are always events, that signify defining moments in our lives, many times they involve something that has been a constant in our lives. I'm sure the loss of JoePa for the Lion Fans will be something they can't fathom or comprehend, maybe ever.
Now that all of these developments have emerged in the past 10 days, here is how I see this ongoing tragedy because at the end of the day, thats what it is, a tragedy that hurt who knows haw many young people. And for the record, I'll apologize for rambling on in what ever direction.
1. Jerry Sandusky- Un Freaking Believable that this sicko is out on bond for such a small amount of $$$. And then he has the audacity to continue to wear Penn State garb out in public, shopping, all the while living in a residence 1,000 feet from an elementary school. How can you retire, which we now know he was forced out in 1998-99, and still keep an office key, all the while continuing to bring young prey with you to and from practice, games, etc.
2. Mike McQueary- I felt bad for Mike for a nanosecond, but how do you go into a building, see and hear a child rape going on and you don't stop, call the police, say something. Just look and run out and then comeback the next day to report it to your head coach only after you consulted your father. And its not like he was 18-22, he was a grown man at 28. Now he must be one of the key witnesses and made some sort of deal where he could not be fired for working for the prosecution.
3. Dumb and Dumber-PSU AD Time Curley and President Spanier. Both of these men are arrogant sons of bitches who thought they could hide this crap, cover it up, turn it over to the Keystone Cops or University Park PD and all would be done. Everybody knows the that the PSU PD was in JoePa's pocket, hiding arrests, not reporting incidents, etc. for football players. It goes on everywhere. Then Dumb and Dumber have always felt they were above everyone else and now they are paying for their stubbornness. And where do Corley and Spanier get off in asking Joe Paterno to resign in 2004 after a 4th losing season in 5 years and JoePa tells them he isn't ready to retire. Bullcrap, you fire him if he's not ready to go. Not firing JoePa has burned this university to a crisp. The last question, were dumb and dumber acting as a legend or a Leader?
4. Joe Paterno- here is a man who obviously has portrayed an image that is not pure as led to believe. JoePa did the right thing in reporting the rape incident to his superiors, but do you leave it there? A day or two later, you need to go back and ask what's going on? If its not turned over to the police, then you take measures into your own hands. Joe Pa didn't and paid dearly, a legend tarnished forever. And thats ashamed. This should have been a chance to go to the Rose Bowl, ride off into the sunset, instead its the defining moment of Joe's career. I think Joe could have finished the season, if, and I say if he did not be so stubborn and keep having press conference on his front lawn. There should have been one voice, through someone in the university on this matter, not JoePa having press conferences on his front lawn. He tried to cover his butt by telling the Board of Trustees not to waste a minute on him as he would retire at the end of the year and that in hindsight, he should have done more about the issue when he had the chance. First, JoePa didn't think he would get fired by mouthing off but basically incriminated himself by making these foolish statements. If he had kept his mouth shut, he could have finished off the season but he didn't leaving the BOT no choice but to can him.
5. Scott and Jay Paterno. Nepotism days are over so its about time you go and get a real job on your own. And how did Scott become family spokesman, arguing with the media on the front lawn then tweeting updates about JoePa. Great PR job by all involved. As I watched Scott on TV, I hoped someone would give him a hamburger just to shut him up.
6. PSU football staff hours. Well we now know JoePa apparently only goes to work at about 2 pm and comes home by 5 for practice thanks to the media on the front lawn. PSU staff members must not stay late either as Jay Paterno and McQueary were seen leaving the football building before 6. Meanwhile, Nick Saban works sun up to sun down as do most D-1 head coaches and the coordinators and assistants do the same. Just saying....
7. Penn State-the university- Public Relations colleges across the country will use this PSU fiasco as a way to not handle things. No press conference, a president with no leadership or backbone acting as if nothing would happen. You better get out and control the story before the story controls you which is what has happened at PSU. The powers that be and for that matter, have an arrogant stubbornness about them that PSU is better, that they were Ivy Leagesque. Hell no your not better, in fact you are the worst scum that's ever lived for allowing, enabling and covering up child rape. PSU leaders acted like the national media would never converge on quaint little, State College in the geographical center of PA, but it happened. With almost every national football writer in Tuscaloosa on Saturday, that meant it would be Monday, but more then likely Tuesday before any of them could get to PSU. PSU leaders could have been out in front of this and put up a united front, called a Sunday press conference, presented their side and gone from there. Instead they acted like we are still a newspaper society, but in fact new travels so fast via twitter that they live in the Dark Ages in State College. The leaders at PSU failed everyone, from the fans, alumni, students and most of all, those innocent children.
8. PSU-the fans and alumni- I feel really bad for the true PSU fans and alums, they don't deserve this. I don't feel bad for the fan who wears the PSU shirt, is a loud mouth about PSU, but has never come close to stepping foot on campus. They don't have a clue what it means to be part of a close knit, university community. But the true supporters of this school don't deserve this, they were blinded and failed by PSU leaders.
9. PSU-the students- why were they rioting and protesting on Wednesday? Only in the Big 10 can you get a PhD in rioting with a master's in dumpster fires or couch burnings. Absolutely ridiculous. If I was in school, and my dad saw me rioting, protesting someone getting fired that enabled child rape and he saw me on TV, forget it, it would be over. He's going to be at the dorm room the next day, your coming home and find another way to make a living cause your standing up for the wrong thing, a football program over abused children.
10. The media-where the hell was ESPN on Wednesday night??? They interrupt Temple Football to show us a press conference with no live video??? What is this, 1940 WWII coverage?? meanwhile, some British chick named Isha, who speaks King's English was owning this story with live coverage, video of the presser and rioting, while informing us with a ticker on the bottom of the screen that "college football was a big money maker for universities." I guess it was the international hour. ESPN failed miserably at their coverage, almost completely ignoring the story on Sunday and Monday and then couldn't get any of their reporters on the air live, despite the fact they were covering the game Saturday. Was everybody out getting drunk on Beaver Canyon or enjoying Peachy Paterno ice cream during this time? Epic Fail by the Worldwide Leader.
11. The Future- Where does PSU go from here. Obviously they must clean house, anybody who knew must go. There are no secrets on coaching staffs, you spend more time with them then you do your own family, you know who has problems about anything so PSU must clean house. If it took Maryland almost 20 years to recovers from Len Bias' death and SMU almost 25 to recover from the Death Penalty, it might take PSU longer to recover from this stigma, especially if more and more victims come clean. Right now, we're back to 1995 and its possible these allegations could stretch back to the 1970's when Sandusky became the Def. Coordinator. At a minimum, we are looking at 20 but I think it could be a 30 year fix or longer.
Its ashamed that no one at this university put their foot down to stop this charade, hurting the proud fans and alumni of this school, but most of all its ashamed of what happened to these children. I hope Jerry Sandusky burns for all he's done.