Paterno followed legal and PSU guidelines. Whether what he did (and we don't know exactly what he did) was enough is another question, but the prosecutor praised his conduct and he followed PSU procedure.
spoiler alert: i linked this
Paterno followed legal and PSU guidelines. Whether what he did (and we don't know exactly what he did) was enough is another question, but the prosecutor praised his conduct and he followed PSU procedure.
And, how many more kids were abused because he followed the correct proceedure? As an MSU fan, we all take shots at each other--that's part of the fun, and the way it should be.
But, this PSU thing is far from fun. I've been involved in education my entire life. If I am told about something like that, I follow up on it. This was one of Paterno's top guys and it happened in HIS ****ing locker room, and the best they have is he followed preceedures? Were prodeedures, wait over 24 hours and make one call? Paterno never once asked the guy, "were you abusing children in my locker room?" And you know that story had to have gotten around that office. They're all to blame. If that little guy was you or your son, would you be pleased with Paterno following proceedure the way he did? It's bullshit, total unvarnished bullshit. The man should be fired, anyone on that staff fired, and the place razed. I'm serious about that. If that happened in my locker room, I tear the eff'n place down. Child sexual abuse is the worse crime that can be comminted on earth.
I'd like you to point out exactly where anyone has said Paterno did not ask the questions you claim he didn't. Paterno hasn't been deposed or testified, and we have no idea what he asked or was told. When we do, we will have a clear idea of what should happen to him. You do realize that one of the guys indicted was in charge of university police? If JoePa was asking him for updates once a week or however often he saw the guy, or was told that the police looked into it and weren't able to find any evidence, then what? Then you've disgraced a guy who thought he was following up with the cops, and was lied to by an administrator also facing perjury charges.
Am I disappointed in Joe Paterno? Yes. Should he have done more? I only say yes because it is not possible to do enough in cases like these. However, you can't go around making claims that you have no basis for. Once he's gone on the record as to his specific actions after learning about the witness account, then you can say whatever you want based on facts known to be true. Until then it's idle speculation about a guy with decades of reputation built up for doing the correct things.
JoePa statement about testifying on Grand Jury.
You are misinformed
I am not misinformed. He has not answered what follow-up he made to the university police administrator or to the AD, how often he did, ect, nor what he was told by those officials. He might have done so in the sealed part of his testimony to the GJ, but certainly not on the record anywhere else.
murder is worse ... both are beyond awful, but murder is worse
I think Paterno is "retiring" (whether he wants to or not) after the season so the NCAA won't have to do anything.
I think the bigger question is what in holy heck does this do to Penn State's football program. Obviously it isn't a "football" issue, so no NCAA violations are coming. I have no idea if the PR nightmare this is will affect recruiting/finding a new coach.
How dare you compare Paterno to Tressel...
I agree that comparison is most heinous. Joe Pa has generally been one of the good guys of College Football, it'll be a sad end to a storied career if he gets any Sandusky slime on him.
Considering the context of everything, that is an especially disgusting comment. Poor form.
Even if Jim Tressel did everything we've accused him of (overlooking payments to players over a decade, covering up same, allowing boosters to have illegal access to players, covering up same), it pales in comparison to what Joe Paterno has admitted to doing. Paterno admitted that he simply told his AD when a graduate assistant came to him with eyewitness evidence of a former 60 year old stafffer showering with a ten year old boy in a manner that the grad assistant consider disturbing enough to be "distraught." I have no love for Jim Tressel, but this is many factors of 10 worse. A child, still unindentified, was anally raped in his facility by his colleague and he did not call people with guns. There are, right now, kids who were raped because Joe Paterno is a moral midget and did not bring this man to justice. Jim Tressel's transgressions, at worst, won him some football games he shouldn't have won and let some bad apples stay in college longer than they otherwise would have. Jim Tressel's transgressions were almost entirely football related and did not involve scores of young boys being deprived of their youth by a child molester he allowed to remain free through knowing indifference.
Joe Pa associated with Sandusky for decades. You're telling me he didn't sniff at this guy's slime ever? Joe Pa was after all, the one who empowered Sandusky by hiring him and retaining him.
Everyone has a radar. We all have some semblance of a gaydar for example. Nothing wrong with that. I have some very good gay friends, so this has nothing with gay, but it does have to do with everyone just having a common sensical radar with regard to others around them, and I merely use Gaydar as an example.
In my late 20s, I once met a rich, middled aged guy from Birmingham, MI at a dinner party a friend invited me to that this guy was hosting. Within minutes I sensed something odd about the guy. He had the exact same proclivities Sandusky had pursuant to the GJ report , except he directed his predatory oddness toward adult men. He came over for the introduction and put his hand on my lower back. Odd, uncomfortable. Later that night, he came and sat next to me and put his hand on my knee... Game over. All I needed to know. Later on that night, when he came over and asked me if I had good abdominal muscles, and he tried to rub my stomach, yes, at this dinner party, it just confirmed to me I was dealing with a Sandusky type who thankfully appeared to just have it out for adult men, and not children.
Later that night when we left I asked my friend what the fuck that was, and he said he knew about it, and everyone knew the guy was weird, but my buddy still went to the dinners because hot girls frequently attended... And it is true, there was some heat in attendance. We were guys in our 20's what do you want...
I figured this all out from one night, and not just because he targeted me. I would have sensed it a mile away no matter who he targeted.
You're going to tell me with all the kids Sandusky took with him to bowl games, into the locker rooms, and with his close relationship with Paterno for decades, that Paterno never smelled a thing? And that "we were all fooled" as he said even after the reports and his even having to take action from the assistant coach's report?
We were all fooled JoePa? That is the best you can come up with? Bull followed by Shit. Paterno deserves the inferred slime on him. He's an old codger who won't retire and let someone else earn a head coaching paycheck, I have no sympathy for him just because he's on death's door.
I will preface my post with the fact that it's early on in the process and the investigation could go through many turns.
That being said, I think Paterno shares a significant element of blame here. A coordinator who was working under him had been allegedly raping young boys. The fact that he didn't go to the police, and didn't make a huge deal of this to the AD or to the PSU president is VERY troubling. You don't simply "follow procedure" when felonies are being committed in your program. And let's make no bones about it: Joe Paterno = PSU. Everything that program does goes through him.
It seems that he took less-than-aggressive action to prevent something so heinous when he had total power to do so. In my mind, JoePa's half-assed actions led to multiple young boys' lives being irrecoverably scarred. He had the power AND the responsibility to make sure that his program was clean and to ensure the safety of these kids, at least with respect to being raped by one of his coordinators. If JoePa had utilized his powerful position, he could have gotten this horrible coordinator out of his program and into prison where he belongs. Instead, all he did was forward a report up the chain of command (who did nothing of substance about it, which should have encouraged JoePa to do something like inform the police).
Unfortunately, that sounds even worse than Jim Tressel to me. So don't automatically assume that Joe Paterno is completely innocent in this matter.
Jerry Sandusky wasn't a coordinator in 2002 at the time of the shower rape. He was a "coach emeritus" or something, having been forced to retire after the 1998-99 season. It's not clear to me exactly how he fit into the Penn St athletic department hierarchy, but I don't think that he reported to Paterno. I'd guess that Sandusky was part of the AD's purview.
None of which is an excuse for Paterno not contacting the police directly.
I read through the report and forgot to distinguish at what points he was a coach and when he was that so-called coach emeritus.
Well said, every word. Well said.
How dare you compare Paterno to Tressel.
The only people I see seriously making this comparison are Ohio fans on national sites, who think that the events at PSU will somehow make Ohio State's cheating look "harmless" in comparison.
Paterno chose to not believe a GA's "he said, he said" over a person who had been his trusted assistant for longer than most people coach at all. In retrospect, his loyalty was misplaced, but who's to say anyone here in a similar situation would believe the GA's account?
I would imagine that nobody feels worse about this right now than Joe Paterno. OTOH, Jim Tressel had no remorse for anything other than getting caught.
The two have nothing in common other than their profession.
OSU's cheating is harmless in comparison.
At OSU, players traded on their fame to get free stuff and the coach turned a blind eye. Those offenses were victimless, apart from the relatively unimportant world of competitive balance within college football.
At Penn State, 10-year-old children were raped by a staff member and the coach and higest levels of the university's administration turned a blind eye. The 8 victims (and likely more) were all prepubescent children.
That this is some "he said, he said" situation is too odious to even comment upon.
This is the last post I'll make here. I know this is a UM board, and I just wanted another school's take on it.
But the above post is spot on. If you think some slimy football coach is a worse situation than a guy allowing child rape to happen under his nose--in his locker room--than I honestly don't know what to say. If someone comes to you with that story, you check it out. You call the ****ing police. No one makes up a story like that. And no one should just pass it off to the boss and forget about it.
Ask yourselves, would you take OSU's problems or PSU's problems. If any of you take PSU's issues than you are fools. Through inaction, the HIGHEST level of authority allowed children to be raped on campus, in the heart of PSU football.
Think about that, and thank God it didn't happen at your school.
Who makes that stuff up? I've seen a lot of petty office politics at my jobs, but accusing somebody of molesting a 10 year old boy goes a lot further than just "he said this, he said that"
From my understanding from the Washington Post article (don't have the link handy), knowing and not reporting to the authorities is also against the law for Paterno.
Reporting it to the AD doesn't absolve him of culpability.
He was told by someone who said they saw it and reported it to the AD, who covered it up. You can say he's morally culpable because he could have told the cops about what he heard and had them investigate directly, but he didn't do anything illegal, it appears.
In other news, and obviously take this with a grain of salt, a friend of mine from PA sent me a message that a radio station is reporting that Urban Meyer's apparently been seen around town or something.
All the rumors earlier about Urban replacing Paterno make more sense in light of this scandal. The NCAA isn't going to do anything, but the scandal is still bad enough to clean house. They won't fire Joe, but it's time for him to go.
I get the feeling that Urban Meyer is the candidate of choice for every job opening in the country.
I heard he was putting in some extra time at the Domino's down the street from me.
Urban Meyer works games for ESPN and ESPN has the Nebraska / PSU game in State College this weekend. He very may well be there, but it may have nothing to do with the coaching job.
Paterno made a statement to the media. Here is the pertinent bit:
The event that was reported to Paterno was significant enough that he called for and had a meeting the next day with his superiors. What the prosecutor said, and I watched the news conference, was that at this juncture Paterno wasn't being charged with a crime. That is the legal side of things which are not yet concluded.
But is there not another issue, and that is whether or not Paterno had an eithical/moral imperative to ensure child abuse was not swept under the rug, which is exactly what happened. As we saw with OSU, the program came first. This isn't tatgate, a veritable fly on an elephant's ass compared to the sexual abuse of young kids, something that I see as the lowest of the low. For Paterno to be expressing his remorse at this juncture is disingenuous at best as it was patently obvious that no action took place. The abuse purportedly contiinued for another seven years.
He contacted his superiors the next day because that's something you automatically report, even if you don't believe it. Seeing as Paterno and Sandusky were friends for decades and Paterno apparently didn't know about anything until the 2002 incident, I wouldn't be surprised if Paterno thought that Sandusky did something inappropriate but no where near as serious as what actually happened. Perhaps he thought that the GA was overreacting a little. At any rate, I doubt his first reaction was to assume that his old friend was committing heinous crimes against children in the face of information that apparently wasn't specific.
Furthermore, it's quite possible that Paterno did, at some point, ask the administrators what came of the case. If so, then I imagine that the administrators would have told him that it wasn't a big deal. Also, I'm a lot more inclined to be angry at the grad assistant, who actually witnessed the unspeakable act and didn't go to the police. Instead, it took Sandusky sexually assaulting a kid at a school where the administrators immediately contacted the authorites to convene a grand jury and indict the bastard.
What Sandusky allegedly did was truly heinous. Based on the evidence spelled out in the indictment, I hope that he spends the rest of his life in prison and spends the rest of eternity rotting in hell. But we do not yet know what exactly Paterno knew, nor do we know his exact actions. And if there's anyone in the world of college sports that I'd give the benefit of the doubt on an issue of moral character, it's Paterno.
My comment to that is "Where the FUCK was the follow-up?" Either from him or Mike McQuery? It feels like a CYA, "I reported it and then moved on" is NOT good enough if you're talking about sexual abuse of a minor. If nothing else don't you wonder why the issue has quietly died?
McQuery's the one I find unbelievable in all this, if he saw what he says he saw how does he not stop it at the time? and then how does he let the issue go over nine years?
For everyone to let Paterno off by saying that what he was told was non-specific. YET it was still worthy of reporting to the university, makes no sense. He has a duty to follow up with that assistant who was "distraught" and get all the information he can. If the assistant did let him know enough about what happened, then he has to go to the law. That's the law in Pennsylvania. Real simple. The AD is not a proper authority for reporting felonies. Especially felonies this heinous. The guy is an educated man entrusted with the program and the well-being of kids generally. I hope he doesn't get off on the: "this is too hard for me to listen to, so I won't ask obvious follow-up questions" defense. That's total garbage.
He let this guy back into the football building. He should have had him thrown off the campus immediately. No questions asked. Don't tell me Joe Paterno doesn't have that power at Penn State.
Paterno admitted that McQueary's statement still included a 60 year old man showering alone with a 10 year old boy and something of a sexual nature occuring such that it caused McQueary to be "distraught". That's more than enough for any sane human being to call someone with a gun.
There is no indication that Paterno was responsible to report it to legal authorities. In fact, PA does not have a law requiring this of him, but rather him report it to his bosses, which he did. His legal responsibility has been rehashed over and over and over again. The grand jury did not feel he did anything wrong - SO DROP IT ALREADY.
I can't say what Joe should or should not have done. I don't know how clearly the GA explained what he saw. I don't know how much of it Joe remembered or wanted to remember. Keep in mind, when you hear/see/experience something this horrendous, our natural tendency is to supress it.
Furthermore, if Joe has followed up with his boss, who is to say he would have received an honest answer. Maybe he shoudl have called the police. But in the end, would you have? Keep in mind, just hearing the allegations are traumatic and he, just like all others might have not reacted correctly.
I am oft to remember a simple reality - I wouldn't have done better, but probably worse. He reported it. I'm sure he regrets his lapse in judgment. The real villans are the PSU administrators who didn't investigate it, and Sandusky if the allegations prove true (remember, there is still a trial and Sandusky has a right to it ... not all allegations throughout time are true - though these look damning). Even if Sandusky is exonerated, the PSU officials failed.
Joe made a bad decision, but it wasn't malicious, intended to cover up, or protect a former coach.
The NCAA is not in the business of enforcing the law, it is in the business of enforcing NCAA Bylaws. There is no NCAA Bylaw that was violated, although it arguably might have been violated if the victims were a little older--say 14-18--and they were football prospects.
Since they were not, the NCAA can't really do anything here.
I find it very hard to believe that sanctions are not at least on the table when it is learned that an assistant coach is found guilty of using school athletic premises for criminal acts, especially given the fact that he was observed on at least one occasion. You may be right in your assessment but I find it hard to believe that a school would not be held liable in some way (i.e. that there is not a "catchall" provision in the by-laws) for this situation.
No school has ever been penalized for anything other than a violation of NCAA Bylaws. I won't say there are no catch-alls, because the NCAA Manual is loaded with catch-alls, but this is the closest I can come (Bylaw 11.1.1):
"Honesty and Sportsmanship. Individuals employed by or associated with a member institution to administer, conduct or coach intercollegiate athletics shall act with honesty and sportsmanship at all times so that intercollegiate athletics as a whole, their institutions and they, as individuals, represent the honor and dignity of fair play and the generally recognized high standards associated with wholesome competitive sports. (See Bylaw 10 for more specific ethical-conduct standards.)"
Now here is the problem: Bylaw 10 is all about how it is unethical to not follow NCAA Bylaws. There is no discussion of following the law. I have heard, as I am sure you have as well, stories of college coaches arrested for drunk driving, drug use, domestic abuse, rape, etc. In none of those cases, as far as I am aware, has the NCAA brought penalties or even conducted an investigation. The NCAA just doesn't enforce anything other than NCAA bylaws.
Oklahoma in the 80's, Nebraska in the 90's and Miami, well, always, would still be on probation, for, like, forever.
Thanks for posting that provision. That is definitely the catchall I imagined but you're right, its never used to discipline a school that employs coaches that are convicted of other criminal offenses. I guess I would argue that the difference here is that PSU's internal policy of reporting failed to prevent continued criminal activity. If Paterno wants to focus on the fact that he satisfied his duty to report by notifying the AD about the one instance, one could argue that the internal processes failed thereafter, evidenced by the fact that Sandusky had continued access to the PSU athletic facilities. In other words, maybe it moves this case closer to the Miami situation (booster access to facilities) than the simple cases of a terminated coach being arrested for something or another.
I just read through the NCAA Bylaws and here are the relevant ones:
NCAA Bylaw 10.01/11.1.1:
Individuals employed by or associated with a member institution to administer, conduct or coach intercollegiate athletics shall act with honesty and sportsmanship at all times so that intercollegiate athletics as a whole, their institutions and they, as individuals, represent the honor and dignity of fair play and the generally recognized high standards associated with wholesome competitive sports.
NCAA Bylaw 10.1 (d):
Knowingly furnishing the NCAA or the individual’s institution false or misleading information concerning the individual’s involvement in or knowledge of matters relevant to a possible violation of an NCAA regulation;
If the NCAA really wanted to shoehorn a violation in here, they could claim that Jerry Sandusky violated NCAA Bylaw 10.01, which is the stated general principle of ethical conduct for individuals associated with a member institution. They could then state that Penn State violated NCAA Bylaw 10.1 (d) when the AD failed to report this information to the NCAA. But seeing as the whole point of NCAA Bylaw 10.1 is to spell out what constitutes an ethical violation in the first place, this would be an incorrect application of the bylaws.
The bottom line is that there is nothing in the NCAA Bylaws to cover serious crimes outside of Bylaw 31.7.3, which has to do with providing counsel to people involved in legal action that pertains to their duties as an employee of the NCAA, so the NCAA doesn't have a procedure by which they could punish PSU.
If anyone's interested, here's a link (very lengthy PDF) to the NCAA Manual for 2009-10.
and Paterno followed the law and therefore the NCAA can't do anything to him. It's a moral issue and I think that Paterno didn't act morally at all and shoul be fired, but he didn't break any law or rule.
Here's a good article on this.
I tend to agree with you, I think he did the minimum required but it fails a morality test. He didn't act to help that child or any other child.
My understanding is that he reported it to the AD. The AD is not an authority. He has no legal power. Doesn't state law require that Paterno report it to the police? He did nothing about the abuse, even when he knew about it and even when he knew that the AD wasn't going to the police. In my mind, he should be indicted for not providing that information to the police. He's just as much part of the cover up as the AD. So why is everyone saying what Paterno did was ok?
Well in that case isn't the grad assistant just as much to blame?
I don't know how the state law in Pennsylvania works.
However, I work at a University, and if I reported something like this to my superior, I would assume that person and the University know the proper authorities to contact, what the procedures are for handling the employee, etc. I would have no idea what the rules were regarding those things, but I would trust them to do it once I reported it.
I don't know the specifics of the Paterno situation. Maybe he was close enough to the situation that he knew or should have known it wasn't being followed through on, and that he should have done more. But it's not 100% clear to me that this was the case.
I'm willing to bet that JoePa was fully aware that nothing happened after reporting it to the AD. This would have been huge news if it had been reported when it happened and there would have been no way to avoid hearing about it. You can't tell me that it's morally right to report it and forget about it. If something like that is going on, you raise hell to get it to stop.
The way the law reads; for an institution such as PSU, that a crime must be reported to a direct superior, and then on and up the chain. It is the administrations responsibility to contact the authorities.
Doesn't state law require that Paterno report it to the police? NO, not in PA. Again, read the grand jury report, read the AG's comment, and the fact that no charges were even considered being filed.
He did nothing about the abuse, even when he knew about it and even when he knew that the AD wasn't going to the police.
- Did he know the AD wasn't going to the police. It seems like he reported it and that's it. We also don't know the full details of what was being told to him from McQuery.
And finally, what would you do. Oh sure, you'd go to the police, after being told potentially sordid details about a former assistant coach. Again, I think the shock of it might actually affect the outcome. I'd assume the AD looked into it. Those are serious claims. And what of McQuery or the janitor. Why did they say nothing either?
I think we see that people hear/see shockign things, and some things are so sick that we tend to ignore them to maintain some sense of sanity. It's not right, but in the end, our second judging of Paterno, who has a track record of doing the right thing, might deserve a shred of the benefit of the doubt.
Again, lets direct our pain and anger at the real victims. I know this hurts and we are all frustrated, but lets focus on the real culprits and not seek to tear down lives in an effort to provide a sense of justice that will never be met, no matter how many people are taken down. Let's focus on the main perpetrator, and the clear, obvious enablers, of which Paterno is none more than the 80-100K+ fans who filled Beaver Stadium for years while Sandusky was a coach.
Seems to me this has nothing to do with the NCAA. They enforce the rules having to do with amateur status and how programs are run. If a coach gets DUI there is nothing that can be done.
I think this is a common misconception when people equate NCAA rules with the law. One has nothing to do with the other. For example, taking cash from some booster isn't illegal, just against NCAA rules.
But I am surprised that he thought he fulfilled any moral obligation by reporting it to the AD without any followup in 2002. Further, the state Attorney General seemed to imply that the statute requires notification to the police (perhaps I am wrong on this specific issue).
Yet, Sandusky continued to have access to PSU facilities after the 2002 incident, including the shower rooms, and there was still no followup?
The only thing that brought this to the public attention were the three arrests: (1) of the perp and (2&3) the university officials who lied to the grand jury (perjury).
The horrible aspect of this is that young boys continued to be molested for 9 years following the 2002 incident. In light of such, does anyone still believe that JoePa fulfilled his obligations?
I posted the relevant Pennsylvania law on another thread: it requires a person who knows or suspects a child is a vicitim of abuse to notify the "person in charge" or their "designated agent", who then has a responsbility to notify the authorities.
Paterno seems to have followed procedure, and legally he's almost certainly in the clear. Whether he should have done more than follow procedure, by following up or throwing his weight around to make sure something was done, is a separate issue.
Paterno's actions were legally adequate and morally abhorrent. Unfortunately, you can't get punished just moral abhorrence.
But there are all sorts of situations you can get punished for moral abhorrence.
I mean, we're on a site where people freak out that people are worried that tiny covered avatar boobies might get them into trouble.
He's dead on. McQueary and Paterno should both be fired. Yesterday.
What's really troubling is that Sandusky was caught in 98 for this and was told to stop showering with kids. How those officers aren't taking any heat for this is beyond me. If it had been the janitor that caught Sandusky and not Sandusky, he would be in jail on a life sentence. What kind of crooked culture is that? Think of how many lives have forever been altered because of this scumbag.
Also, the whole "well he's JoePa's friend" argument is maddening. If JoePa was so relaxed (not sure if that's the right word) with his dealing on the situation because Sandusky is a close friend that makes it sooooo much worse.
This is all very helpful, thanks. So it's enough to just report an allegation of rape, then do no meaningful follow-up? (Maybe Paterno did more than that; I'm just going by the grand jury report.) Even when you're the de facto head of the program? That's kinda nauseating. I realize that Sandusky hadn't been charged or convicted of anything at the time. But I like to think most good head coaches would have done more than Paterno seems to have done.
I'm by no means an expert (or even fully informed) about the situation here but it seems as though Sandusky's retirement came at a "convenient" time for Paterno. The best he could do was report (which he did) and terminate employment (which he did not). That said, like someone else noted above, the fact that Sandusky was allowed on the premises after McQuery witnessed the assult is inexcusible. That, in my opinion, is grounds for termination of Paterno, him having been informed of the assault and not having inquired further. Morality doesn't come into criminal charges but it definitely is considered in employment.
I'm literally in a 'State of Shock' right now. This is not even an issue for sports fans but the general populace as a whole-- the image of Penn State has endured countless arrests, accusations and other hypocrisy, but this is something far different.
The greater community right now is numb, just tongue-tied with disgust and disbelief. No one's joking, no one's laughing it off or even denying it. There's just nothing to say.
From where I'm standing, I think Paterno himself will probably escape relatively unscathed unless someone in the media really trains the crosshairs on him. At least, legally and professionally, that is. I don't think he's gonna get pulled down with the rest of them. But it's his image, and ultimately his legacy, that will be tarnished, and in the worst possible way. You can say what you want about mental health or senility or whatever, but few people doubt that he's generally a good, honest man. And because he's always had this image of going above and beyond what was permissible to do what's right, it will also be his undoing. He did enough-- but he's always been painted as the type of guy who doesn't settle with 'enough'.
I think a lot of people tried to look the other way to protect someone that they thought of as their own, and failed to see him for the perpetrator he was. Curley claimed that he just thought it was 'horsing around,' but then banned Sandusky anyway. Hypocrisy-- he's gone, and he should be. This guy clearly was trying to sweep something under the rug, and was more concerned with protecting his program than the victims and subsequent future victims.
Ignoring this kind of stuff is like walking past a ticking bomb under a bus and doing nothing about it.
I really have nothing against JoePa in the matter, except for the part of his press release where he states that he didn't know the extent of what the grad assistant saw. Clearly McQueary told him exactly what he saw and how bad it was. Paterno's entire argument hinges on that portion of his statement, really-- How much did he know?
I would hope McQueary isn't pulled into the mud-- he saw what he saw and he blew the whistle on it. If he was told to keep his mouth shut, I would think we'll find out. And if he did, even when he knew he was wrong, well... that's where it gets complicated.
The whole darn thing is complicated... and messy. Two weeks ago the entire state was praising the old man for his record win, and now this??? Common belief around here, since I was a boy, was that Joe earned the right to call his own number, and on his own terms. Now... I wouldn't be all that surprised if a new AD eventually wipes the slate in the aftermath of the ugliest PR nightmare any athletic program has possibly ever endured.
As it stands, right now in the Keystone State the mere words "Penn State" are positively cringeworthy.
I think McQueary might not be totally innocent in all this. When you witness a child being raped, the first thing you do is call the police. You don't wait to tell your boss. If it really was just "horseplay", then I can understand conferring with Paterno first. But the grand jury indictment is very explicit about what McQueary thought he saw. I don't understand why he didn't immediately call police after witnessing something like that.
I guess I never really thought about it until now, but where's the "Dude, What the Hell Are You Doing??" right then and there on the spot. If any of us walked in on something like that, wouldn't the first response be to get the monster away from the kid in the first place?
McQueary went home and told his dad, and the next morning he told Paterno. He didn't save anyone or anything except Sandusky. Now, I guess we have to understand that he's, at that point anyway, a young kid and recent grad in the first step of his career with the program he loves. He's got a lot to lose, and he'd be calling out a respected member of the PSU community and a former authority his life. But none of that excuses him or changes the fact that he watched a kid's world being destroyed and ran away.
I can maybe understand McQueary getting the hell out of there and fleeing the building out of shock, panic, or fear for his own safety (if a man is capable of raping a 10 year-old boy, what else might he be capable of?). But I just can't understand him not calling the police as soon as he's had a few minutes to gather his thoughts and digest what he just saw. It speaks to Paterno's omnipresence within that program that a graduate assistant's (and his dad's) first instinct upon witnessing the rape of a child in a football locker room is to defer to Paterno.
This is where I'm still struck dumb, I don't get how IMMEDIATE action wasn't taken by McQuery and how he didn't bang on a drum over and over to follow up on the issue. Something stinks really bad here.
Worse yet, how does McQuery continue to go to work everyday, knowing what he witnessed, ESPECIALLY since Sandusky was still around after he retired!?? I'd like to think that I'd have tackled Sandusky if I saw something like that happening (especially being a father myself), but maybe I wouldn't???? And I'd like to think that I'd quit my job if I ever had to see Sandusky in my place of employment. But maybe I wouldn't have the guts??? Either way, what a horrible situation for McQuery to be in, all because he witnessed something horrible like that. I feel for the guy, all the while feeling a bit disgusted that he didn't do more to protect that little boy.
This is outside of the NCAA's purview, since it doesn't have anything to do with actual competition. I don't expect that they'll have anything to say about it.
I'm sure the NCAA can find something.
If nothing else, Sandusky was offering one of the victims a spot on the team as a walk on in exchange for... well, you know.
The NCAA will investigate, and certainly they'll find something. The media will descend upon Happy Valley and they'll turn up a thing or two.
"The NCAA will investigate..."
I'm fairly certain that they won't. Why would they? There is no question of Penn State not following NCAA bylaws, and the NCAA generally stays out of things without specific accusations of specific bylaws being broken.
Maybe you're right, but the media certainly will.
Do you really think an institution that could cover up something this big, wouldn't cover up other things as well?
Just ask the Catholic Church if keeping abuse allegations "in house" and reporting it to your superior is sufficient in the eyes of the courts. I feel so sad for the victims. This is a disgusting situation.
1. Legal Issues. As most people have mentioned, this is, at it's core, a LEGAL matter. Laws were broken. Which laws, etc. are up to the courts and stuff. We know there was alleged molestation, and an alledged cover up. As of now, with the grand jury stuff, Paterno is not found to have done anything ILLEGAL. (As far as I understand the "failure to report" parts) The AD and VP of whatever are found to have broken the law by not reporting, and perjured themselves in the process.
2. NCAA Issues. This is the big difference. No NCAA rules were broken here. This is why this case is SO different and should NOT be compared to OSU or Miami. It is not Illegal to sell your own jersey. It is an NCAA Violation. It is Illegal to molest children. The NCAA has nothing to do with this case
3. Moral Issues. This is where Joe Pa is in trouble. In the court of public opinion, and in a total non-legal sense, Joe Pa is one of many people who made mistakes. Huge mistakes. There were many,many people along the way who could have, and (morally, possibly legally) SHOULD have called the police. By failing to do so they all contributed to the continuing molestation of children. Maybe by not calling the police Joe Pa (and others, including the then grad-assistant) didn't break the LAW, but they did not act MORALLY CORRECTLY either. Whether doing the WRONG thing (not illegal, possibly) is a fire-able offense is the next question.
a failure to sound the alarm means more kids get hurt. For this, JoePa stands in the court of public opinion, whatever the existing legalities.
Edit: When all is said and done we may want to petition the B1G offices to take Joe's name off the championship trophy.
It has been intimated many times that the next coach at PSU is NOT currently on the staff. This is an open rumor among the Homer Faithful. They have been hoping and praying that Urban Meyer will be that next coach just grasping at that rumor alone.
I don't find it to be a coincedence that one week before this shitstorm came ashore in (un)Happy Valley, Miami and Al Golden started renogotiating his contract. He has openly coveted that job for many years and put in time at other schools. He's generally respected as a squeaky clean guy that runs a tight ship.
The only thing missing right now is the wife's cousin's brother-in-law is a realtor rumor showing him a home in State College.
Paterno is done.
A lot of people here are jumping to conclusions, presuming everybody guilty until proven innocent.
Nobody knows exactly what happened to whom and who knew exactly what was alleged and when. We may never know.
Let the justice system do its work and let more facts come to light... then people can weigh in. Even then there will be gray areas. Especially when it comes to alleged sex crimes, objective evidence of wrongdoing may be completely absent. Unfortunately, this does not prevent prosecutions and even convictions. Our justice system is incredibly flawed even in this day and age and often functions like the Salem witch trials when it comes to sex crimes. The allegations are disgustingly horrible and hopefully every guilty party is appropriately punished. But convicting people without solid evidence and completely destroying their lives can be even more horrible.
So it's probably best for everybody to keep an open and rational mind about this situation.
Hopefully, the NCAA does likewise.
Of course this generic "innocent until proven guilty" response applies to all such discussions. However, I think we can all agree that where there's smoke, there's fire. As such, I think its entirely acceptable for the media fallout and for the court of public opinion to be in session.
Is it just me or does Joe Paterno get waaaay too much credit and praise. He has been at PSU forever, of course he's going to have a TON of wins. He always had a big ego and crushed the Pitt PSU rivalry because he felt "wronged" by Pitt. The last decade, he has basically been holding Penn State hostage while him and Bowden competed for the most win mark. He has clearly only been a figurehead for the past 5+ years. He can't travel, so can't recruit, can't be on the sidelines at games, can't be an effective in-game coach, probably can't read that well (thick glasses) or speak loudly (giving direction at practice) or even walk too much.
To me, this scandal makes it less likely that he will get his "ride off in the sunset" sendoff. He should be gone after this season, gone as in not the coach at Penn State, not what you were thinking for a second. =)
Also, his name should probably be removed from the Big Ten Championship trophy, right?
What did he do in the long run for the Big Ten anyway? The pundits thought PSU would rule the conference, but yet I believe PSU won one football championship since being admitted 20 years ago?
There is no way that his name can be associated with any conference championship after this ugly affair.
Think of the kids molested and the impact on their lives forever. His failure to go beyond contacting the AD contributed to years more of immoral behavior of the worst nature.
Bo and Woody, who have won so many Big Ten CHAMPIONSHIPS, was stupid to begin with. The coach's trophy could easily be named after Paterno and Stagg or whoever, for what they have contributed to coaching as a whole.
But it's gone from stupid to embarrassingly offensive. And everyone thought "Legends and Leaders" was their biggest problem.
Earlier this year when A& M kicked the conference realignment talk into high gear, Paterno hinted that PSU should consider what's best for itself rather than remain loyal to the B1G. And he, in front of the media, wondered if the ACC wasn't a better fit.
“Things are changing and you’re not really sure what’s going to happen,” Paterno said. “I don’t know where we’re going to end up. There might be even some speculation that Penn State maybe ought to get into something different, or we ought to try to go out and get some people from the east to come into the Big Ten.”
So much for loyalty, then. What's next, the Big East Frank Beamer Award? The Bo Pelini Big 12 North Trophy?
is he's a PSU big shot, former player and coach, and friend of Joe P. Any "lesser" person would be behind bars now. That's what makes this so horrific. The Penn State administrators were clearly attempting to cover all this up - completely losing sight of the further terrible crimes by Sandusky they were enabling by protecting him. Getting back to the OP, the NCAA will do nothing here. This is a criminal legal case in an area outside of NCAA rules. What former coaches do outside of the program isn't their concern. Really, the group that should be taking decisive action here is the PSU Board of Regents (or whatever they call the governing body there). They need to be VERY concerned about not just the football program's reputation but the entire university's as well. How they handle this will say a lot about their character and ethics.
Yes, all evil needs to prosper is for good men to do nothing.
I don't post that often, but I haven't seen anyone else mention this, so I'll throw it out there.
I remember Mike McQueary as a pretty big guy. A quick google search gave McQueary's ht/wt as 6'4'', 213lbs. He was 28. Sandusky was an old man.
Why didn't McQueary stop it?
Why turn around and leave the room and call his father? And then exit the building?
Why not go up to them, shove Sandusky away and take the boy out of the room?
The kid was in jeopardy. McQueary is a big, strong athlete. Stop them and take the kid to safety.
If I am wrong here, what am I missing?
According to Dan Wetzel, Sandusky was using PSU facilities (weight room) well into 2010.
So what was going through McQueary's head as he sees Sandusky around the office on a regular basis?
This story keeps getting worse and worse.
I lied: Sandusky was using PSU facilities last week
I have to stop reading about this story. If I was one of those kid's father, I would probably be behind bars for having beaten Sandusky to a pulp. This whole thing makes me sick and irrational . . . PSU's football program should be shut down.
/overreacting for good reason
That's yet another disturbing thing to think about. All those times they had to have crossed each other's path in the 9 years since McQueary's discovery. He had to have been given a ton of hush money. I can't think of any other reason he would do no follow up when nothing happened to Sandusky.
Sooner or later, McQueary is going to have to come out of hiding and release a statement.
Mike said that Sandusky and the kid ran to Sandusky's locker room.
Mike probably felt, and yes, guesstimating, that telling Paterno would bring the hammer, cause, of course, harming an at risk kid who was lured to campus in hopes of being mentored, is a sick f*&@*&%g thing to do and JoePa, with his value core, would save the child....
And here we are today, the cover up, in this case, is just a little less worse than the crime...
No no...you're right. All this talk about accountability, and doing the right thing, and honor is a whole lotta bullshit. At least at the highest level of the athletic department at PSU.
protestations that Paterno did what was required. Sandusky is using your beloved school's facilities to do this stuff and you don't ring the alarm to the high heavens? (I mean, someone is assaulting a kid in Michigan's locker rooms, what would you hope Hoke did? Tell Brandon and then not worry when Brandon did nothing? Hells no.)
Also, you know this guy for decades and nothing more than that one incident is reaching you? I have serious doubts. You almost have to be blind on purpose, which amounts to negligence. . . exactly the kind of negligence you would fear with an Uncle Bernie kind of arrangement of that kind.
I'll bet Paterno was just scared to death this would emerge, knew it would besmirch PSU like a mug. Point me to the line where I place my money that Paterno is done this year.
If Joe Pa resported something I am sure it was more than "Hey AD, some Grad Asst told me he saw Sandusky and a kid in a room- please investigate". There's no reasonable cause unless he knew that Sandusky was doing harm, and which he should have taken care to follow-up, it's a 10 year old were talking about here.. Wouldn't he care for the child's safety?
I applaud ESPN for being active, particualrly Golic (who can be infuriating) Cowherd (same, but ego+) and SVP folks for taking a stand on this and pointing out the utter hypocrisy of Joe's statement.
Taking advantage of at risk kids is disgusting. Not inquiring when someone says a kid is in danger and needs help (the Grad Asst comment to Joe Pa) is complicit in the harm.
Paterno needs run out of Happy Valley.
But hey, this is the Internet, I don't expect much to vent frustration at certain folks in the football communities who dimly say "let's follow laws, we can't judge, etc etc".
Thank God this is Michigan. Thank God for Bo's standards and focus.
I want to know who Paterno's "scores of professionals trained in such things" who missed this sickening episode are. I'll say this; they may not have missed it if anyone in the PSU athletic department had the balls to do the right thing on behalf of little kids who were being raped. It's hard to stand up and be accountable. That's why those who are accountable are revered. There is nothing to be revered in Happy Valley.
McQueary came, saw, reported, and then never left or said any more even after nothing happened to Sandusky.
Paterno heard McQueary's statement (I'm not guessing there was any question that Paterno understood that something deeply wrong was going on), passed it "upstairs" to his de facto employee the AD, and never left or said any more even after nothing happened to Sandusky.
The University president heard the same story -- nothing.
There was no accountablity and a bunch of little boys paid the price.
Based on Paterno's statement there still isn't.
In a very different situation, I had to basically force a person to retire. In my situation, substance abuse and abuse of prescription medication was involved, so the only damage was to the individual (well, and job performance, obviously.)
Regardless, my point is this: I can very much believe that Sandusky "retiring" was perceived at the time (by the AD, & perhaps by Paterno) as allowing them to get rid of Sandusky without airing all the dirty laundry. This allowed them, as said by Six Zero, to "protect one of their own."
But there is more. It also allowed them to avoid an investigation. I'm not sure how much they really wanted to know. Sometimes, people just want to look the other way. Sadly, it also allowed someone to continue abhorrent and horrible behavior without sanction or review.
PSU is going to have a massive class action civil lawsuit on its hands. Not to mention all the other consequential damages from this story - decrease in applications (I assume), decrease in donations to the AD (I assume), you name it. When all is said and done, PSU is going to be out $millions, I bet.
Curly? Joe? Where are Larry and Moe?
I don't get how someone witnesses it, and his reaction is "hmm...maybe I should report this to somebody". I value my job, my career, and hold a lot of people in high regard....but it could have been some magically amalgam of Bo, Lloyd, Rich and Brady combined, and if I find that thing messing around naked with a little kid in the shower (no matter which claim of witnessed events you believe), that SOB is going to be tasting shower room tiles, and that boy is going straight to the police. Old man or Andre the Giant, you're letting that kid go or you're getting ready for unplanned castration. Man up and do what's right. In THAT situation, it's not a hard choice at all.
Paterno did the right thing by reporting, but once he saw that it wasn't being handled properly, it was up to him to take it to the next level.
If you see something wrong, report it to the next person up the chain. And keep going up until it gets resolved. If that doesn't work, talk to the authorities.
The failure of incidental adults in this is appalling. GA and janitor stumble into incidents in progress but don't intercede at all and don't even engage the law via the police, they just pass it up their employers' chain of command. It seems Paterno did exactly that, too, with the added firewall of "the GA didn't give me any details like *that*" (just enough to warrant an emergency meeting about it on a Sunday...).
RIch Rod is gonna be coaching at PSU next year, I can feel it..
We need so much more information about who did what when. Most normal people, had they been in McQueary's position, would have immediately kicked Sandusky's ass and dragged him to the cops. Did he really just defer to the AD for nine years, even as Sandusky continued visiting the lockerroom? Most head coaches, having heard of anything even remotely involving pedophilia, would have beaten the drum until every shred of doubt was gone. Most school administrators would have immediately consulted with outside law-enforcement.
Either McQueary or Paterno is lying about what McQueary reported. Would Paterno, when informed that Sandusky was literally caught raping a 10-year-old on campus, really just fob it off on the AD and still let Sandusky hang around the program? Strains credulity, doesn't it? I do wonder how candid McQueary was when he first reported the "incident." Otherwise, Paterno is a monster.
Regardless, adults who witness sex crimes must be legally required to also contact the police, no? I'm pretty sure the law doesn't say "Just tell your boss and you're good." I'm hoping Paterno et al will be able to fill in the blanks. But jeez. There's very little gray area once you (or one of your staff) catches a colleague in the showers with a 10-year-old boy.
Do they really need to do anything? Given what has apparently happened, I think the final decision on his fate - if it is to be something other than retirement - is up to PSU and, if it gets that far, law enforcement.
I don't know...if I am PSU and Joe Paterno's name is basically doing a Titanic before my very eyes, then I offer him the opportunity to leave quickly and, for the time being, somewhat graciously.
He really should have gone straight to law enforcement. Why he would merely present the allegations of child sexual abuse - once he heard about them - to the AD's office and no one else is beyond me. Definitely, when he saw nothing happen, he should have approached the police.
Long time reader, second time poster here and I want to lead with a few position statements before I offer my opinion: I am not trained to offer a legal opinion or interpretation of the situation. From a moral perspective, I'm outraged by the situation and I believe that any adult has an obligation to inform the autorities whenever an allegation of sexual abuse of a child is made so that a proper investigation can be conducted and, most importatly, children can be protected. I also believe in the rule of law and, no matter how damning a Grand Jury statement or evidence produced by a prosecutor to the media, that a defendant is innocent until proven guilty and deserves a fair trial.
Regarding the purview of the NCAA in this matter, at this time I don't see that the bylaws presented here relate closely enough to the situation for an investigation to be initiated. It's abhorring to say, but frankly the charges are not related to the on-field product (from prospective student-athletes through active staff in the program). Having to resort to "catch-all" bylaws like Section 10, no matter how central to the organization's aim, generally make the burden of proof fall that much harder on the accusor/investigator in cases like these.
Unfortunately, this situation has caused everyone to stare into the depths of a horrible, previously unthinkable situation. Now that Pandora's Box has been opened, I hope the NCAA will add an addendum to their bylaws specifically dealing with abuse of all kinds. They are now faced with the realization that a large portion of the individuals in their purview (prospective student-athletes) are minors, and provisions for their protection need to be explicitly legislated. Given the current debacle and that an athletic scholarship means anything from the fulfillment of a lifelong dream to a life-altering opportunity to attend college when it would otherwise be impossible, it seems that the vulnerability of prospective student-athletes has been exposed to its core and protections must be made for them as quickly as possible.
Even more unfortunate in this instance is that, from a legal perspective, the rules can only be created now. I believe a code of conduct and expectations for interactions with minors that expressly addresses the "Position of Trust" issues in the recruit-coach relationship should be created as soon as possible and immediately added to the NCAA Bylaws. Punishing Penn State under those rules however would be rationally unjust. Ex post facto punishment is forbidden by the Constitution, and though specific instances similar to the current situation have been tested in the Supreme Court, currently the NCAA would be inconsistent with the American justice system if they were to punish Penn State for rules that were not in effect when the transgressions occurred.
Now that I'm done with the (arguably) rational side of my opinion, it's time for the emotions to creep back. Morally, I think it's hard to find a point in the entire Grand Jury statement at which some adult didn't fail to act in the child's (childrens'?) best interest. The GA should have stepped in and removed the child from the shower and Sandusky's presence. His father should have instructed him to tell Paterno AND the police. Paterno should have immediately contacted the police. Curley and the VP should have been transparent, even if they had to try to spin the situation from a PR standpoint to the press. "We've stopped him and we're seeking justice for the children" is a much more powerful message than "we've been caught trying to save ourselves and our program from negative press (at the very least)." Hiding behind chains of command or loyalty to longtime employees/employers in situations like this is inexcusable and demonstrates a willingness to apply moral relativism to an issue--the well-being of children--that I and hopefully most people believe requires an absolute.
My hesitance to ride my emotional desire to see the pike on which I believe people who sexually abuse children should be impaled hit Sandusky in the tonsils is based on the personal relationship I have with several people who were involved in former District Attorney Nifong's crusade against the Duke lacrosse team. Seeing the destruction, stress and emotional pain inflicted on them by a malicious prosecutor convinced me that every defendant is entitled to a fair trial in a court of law. It also taught me that evidence is relative until both sides of the argument are heard. Frankly, the Grand Jury statement made my blood boil, but until Sandusky and his attorneys either admit its truth or can convincingly and rationally refute it, I'm stuck in a no-man's land between emotional rage and a rational nagging to make sure that an attempted public railroading never happens again. So, I'm left with a desire to show people who hurt kids like this my home run swing in a place where nobody can hear their screams and a tiny voice in my head begging me to make sure the guy deserves everything he gets... It's troubling that I have to feel that dichotomy.
/back under the bridge
that JoePa will be retiring at the end of the year, whether by his choice or Penn State's
"Schultz's lawyer said his client was not among those required by law to report suspected abuse. He also argued that the two-year statute of limitations on the summary offense has expired. "
How low can they go? This is a PR nightmare for the university and I think there's going to be some big happenings within a week or two. This hasn't made national news yet, but the university president isn't in the clear yet either.
Think of it this way. If you walked down the street and saw a guy beating up his girlfriend, you could keep walking and not break any laws, or you could do what any man worth a damn would do, and do something to stop it. Now, imagine if the crime was being conducted in your own backyard, by someone you knew intimately for decades? Even more so the impetus upon you to stop it.
JoePa's a mess, and deserves the slime on him for not stepping up.
I hope to god that Sandusky sings and we get some more details. To think that paterno had no knowledge of sandusky's proclivities is beyond laughable. The 1998 incident was conveniently followed by sandusky's retirement or whatever in 1999. Reeks of a cover up. In 2002 pattern could no longer ignore what was happening because a GA inconveniently came to him with an eyewitness account that couldn't be ignored. At that point paterno did the absolute bare minimum and never bothered to follow up, despite the seriousness of the allegations of something happening in his own facilities. FFS this guy was raping a 10 year old in the locker room and we are to believe it was an isolated incident or he somehow managed to avoid being caught for over a decade?
In terms of not pre-judging him, the facts that have already been established in the grand jury testimony and admitted to by paterno are plenty to deem him to be no leader of men and general awful human being. What person when brought an eye witness account of a child being raped doesn't call the police?
So I agree that the Penn state situation is far, far worse than anything tressel did at Ohio.
But which is worse, to cover up the sexual abuse of minors by someone else (Joe Pa) or to physically assault (eg hit) young men yourself (Woody)?
McQueary went to Paterno in 2002. The last victim cited by the grand jury was abused between 2005-2009.
I'm going with Joe Pa as the greater asshat (should allegations prove true) since the impact to the victims is much more disturbing and longer-lasting; even if he did not commit the assault himself.
There is no discussion--you protect children--end of discussion. Also, here's a quote from the AG in Pennsylvania:
[quote]Ms. Kelly described Mr. Paterno, who was told of at least one incident by a graduate assistant, as being "cooperative" with prosecutors. He is not viewed as a target at this point, she said.[/quote]
Paterno was told of at least one incident..... This line of thought was not by accident. There must be reports Paterno heard other things. Sorry, the guy is dirty and should go. I don't care if never said a bad thing in a recruiting visit, helped old ladies across the street, or funded a new wing at the hospital. His inactions helped to allow children to be raped. I know it sound bad because it is bad.
The people around Joe has spent years saying the old man is still vibrant, engaged, firmly in control. Watch how swiftly they now start saying he's an old man who left the details to others.
Anyone think that because Patterno has been the figurehead coach at Penn State since who knows when that he may have been unable to go over the AD's and other officials' heads? for those of you who believe Patterno has a dimished role in the progam( like Bobby bowden would've had if he stayed at FSU) is it plausible that Patterno didn't do more because he didn't have any real authority over the program?
this question is just a hypothesis.