At least four Penn State Board of Trustees members intend to file an appeal Monday with the NCAA over sanctions levied against the university after the Jerry Sandusky child sex-abuse scandal because they say the NCAA did not give the school due process.
PSU Trustees say they are appealing NCAA sanctions
That seems ill-advised
That seems like an understatement
Hopefully the Big 10 boots them so we don't have to hear about it on the board anymore.
I'm so sick of hearing about them.
They need to just take their licks, shut up, and go sit in the corner awhile.
Haha joke's on you if you think people will stop posting it on the board if PSU was kicked out of B10
and booted from the Big Ten. Im tired of fu&king around with these guys. Everyone in power covered up for a child rapest. Take your punishment like a man or face harsher penalties.
I agree 100%.
I love all of the posturing on the part of Penn State fans.
"There's nothing in the NCAA rules that addresses this! They're making it up as they go along. It's bullshit! We are so going to sue the NCAA! Waaaaaah!"
"Aside from being incorrect on this matter young Paternolyte, assuming this were indeed the case, the reason the NCAA would have no rules on this matter is simple. When the NCAA created it's various rules with regard to the potential infractions a school could commit, no one in their wildest imagination could ever have possibly conceived that a single university could be this fucked up or morally bankrupt. Thank you, and enjoy a decade of football hell."
They are flirting with the possibilty of getting themselves booted from the NCAA if they keep this up.
So if they do it to themselves is it the death penalty or suicide?
Seriously, however, given all that O'Brien has done to hold that team together, this could send players running.
Good call BoT, drag on the process as long as you possibly can. I think the decision was pretty harsh, but an appeal implies that the NCAA doesn't have the story right. You can't just appeal because you think it's unfair (right?). Do they really think they have a chance here? Seems to me all the facts are out there.
We will see how the NCAA handles this now that practice has started.
I think the appeal has legs if only because the NCAA went out of their way to ignore their own rules in order to apply the punishment.
Did you read the excellent piece on ESPN that was posted here last Friday?
As pointed out in the piece, there was strong sentiment by many university presidents and other parties to shut down the football program for several years. In lieu of that, an agreement was reached. No one made Penn State sign the agreement; they did so because they believed the sanctions were better than what they MIGHT have faced had the process gone forward as is the usual case with NCAA investigations. They settled the case.
It is interesting that there is a lack of unanymity among board members, at least so far. There are also questions being raised about whether the acting president of Penn State had authority to sign an agreement.
The school's governance is beyond FUBAR.
Your last two paragraphs are 100% on the money.
It may be that these four trustees are simply posturing for whatever reason--so they can say they never favored the deal, PSU was treated unfairly etc.
Is it really considered settlement of a case when you are told agree to this or you get the death penalty instead? It is a fact, not a debateable point, that the NCAA went outside of their own written and established procedures in giving this punishment. Those procedures always involve NCAA investigators and take up to a year or more. Now, that may be justified in this unique case, I'm not arguing the punishment really. The NCAA did ignore their own due process --because they considered the Freeh report more thorough then they could have done--but the fact is they did ignore it. That process also involves appeal.
Legally, the NCAA didn't give anything. PSU and the NCAA came to an agreement voluntarily in which PSU agreed to a level of punishment and the NCAA agreed to enforce and monitor that level of punishment.
No due process was ignored. PSU always had the option of not signing the consent document and either withdrawing from the NCAA or going through the normall infractions process. PSU, with full capability of council, waived their right to due process and plea bargained.
Well, I think the question is whether the President = PSU.
Seems like the BOT has lost institutional control of the interim president.
To me it seems like the BOT has lost institutional control of its own members.
Some things you don't do as a member of a board:
- take intraboard disputes public after a decision has been reached
- speak on behalf of the board or the institution
- file a lawsuit on behalf of the board or the institution
#1 or #2 gets you censured--#3 is so far out there that I can't quite get my head around the possibility that it's happening, but it should get you removed from the board. Not sure what the PSU by-laws have to say regarding removal of board members who fail to live up to the requirements of the position, but I'm sure there's a procedure in there somewhere.
Agreed. No matter how you slice it, PSU's governance is a tire fire.
Part of the problem has to be that the BOT is a sinecure, not a real governance position. Michigan has 8 members on the Board of Regents. PSU has *32* members on their BOT.
That's not a governing body, it's a cocktail party, and a sloppy one at that.
In State College, #3 makes you a hero. Forget athletics; their accreditation should be pulled if they can't get their shit in order, and soon.
I would agree that there would be a due process issue based upon just that, BUT the university officials who are legally authorized to make decisions on behalf of the university made the decisions and reached an agreement with the NCAA (much like a plea deal). I think a due process challenge is ill advised and won't go anywhere because what we really have here is a different type if suit entirely: one between the university president and the president of the board of trustees to determine whether they had the authority to enter into the consent decree without full board approval.
and determine if it agrees to abide by the sanctions the school president accepted from the NCAA. Except, it already did that on July 25 and stood behind the president. I guess they can just keep voting on it until trustees stop filing lawsuits and sending letters. Insanity.
The BoT did accept them. Erickson went before them and basically made it clear it was this or a multiyear death penalty.
This is just 4 individuals on the Board who are trying a new avenue after failing to get the Board to reject the penalties. This is grandstanding for reelection and won't go anywhere since four trustees lack any kind of legal standing to do something on the University's behalf. You need the board to authorize them to act as reps or the President to do it. It's like how four Congressmen can't just go and sue someone on behalf of the entire United States.
Basically there were Board elections between the scandal breaking and now. Multiple folks were elected on the grounds of "We must defend JoePa's legacy." Seriousily that was basically their platform. It is those people who are doing this.
I believe you are talking about ultra vires, someone acting beyond the scope of their authority (law school was quite some time ago). Assuming that to be the case, is there any basis to unwind what was done? They have already had eight players leave the program and had two decommits. Based upon what I read in the ESPN report noted in one of my previous posts, it seems that the board had knowledge of the Freeh report and there seemed to be acceptance of its findings, at least by some of its members.
I don't think we're talking about ultra vires here. Ultra vires is when a body corporate acts outside its charter. If a body corporate makes a contract beyond the scope of its corporate powers, that contract will generally be unenforceable. (I try to keep discussions of legal Latin de minimis, by the way.)
The question here (and I think it's a valid one, heinous underlying subject matter notwithstanding) is whether Erickson had the authority to sign the consent decree and bind PSU. I'm confident that PSU (writ large) has the ability to enter into a consent decree. The question is whether under the university charter the president has the ability to bind the university acting on his own. Essentially it's a question of whether the necessary consents were obtained and the formalities observed.
When you do a transaction of any moment in the business world, you always check for due authorization, require copies of current by-laws, certify that the company in question is in good standing, etc. You want to ensure that the deal you cut isn't challenged on authorization or similar grounds. What's astounding in the PSU case is it seems entirely possible that nobody thought to see exactly what procedures needed to be followed for PSU to accept the consent decree.
Two possibilities here - (A) Erickson had due authority, so the other trustees are acting like idiots by challenging this; or (B) Erickson lacked the authority, so he and his few BoT colleagues in the know are acting like idiots.
One certainty here - persons in positions of great responsibility are acting like idiots.
I can only remember a few latin terms so when the opportunity comes up to use one every five years or so, I make the leap. I believe that ultra vires is a term that has meaning beyond the world of corporations. I am sitting in a bar with laptop in hand and can't acces my online copy of Black's law dictionary. In an attempt to save face, I present to you a Wiki link (yeah, I know - I'm an IP guy, that explains it).http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ultra_vires
Getting beyond definitions, PSU had attorneys involved with the negotiations with the NCAA for some time. The board was cognizant of the report and its findings. Can you envision any way that a court would overturn the agreement between the NCAA and PSU? Would there even be a requirement that approval, assuming that it was necessary, had to be written?
This is correct in terms of what the term "ultra vires" actually means (in this case, it would be whether the actions of the President and Chairwoman were within their scope of authority), but I've never run into it used legally in that sense (ie just in the traditional corporate law sense about the actions of an entity, not individuals within an entity). In that sense, you are both really talking about the same thing, just using separate terms.
And the "punishment" has nothing to do with the budget. WTF
IMO this is just an attempt by the trustees to give an “appearance” that they have fought the decision. Not that it will go anywhere, just so they not appear to have rolled over. Didn't they already agree with the decision?
It is the last thing PSU needs though, take the punishment, get it over with and try to salvage what you can of the university’s honor and reputation.
PSU *voluntarily* accepted the punishment. In effect, they self imposed than as part of that self imposed punishment entered into an agreement with the NCAA so that it couldn't be undone.
They were of sound mind and body. They had sufficient access to legal council.
They are in a legal binding document.
They cannot appeal to the NCAA because they went outside of that system *voluntarily* and self imposed.
I've never understood the argument that "the NCAA went out of [its] way to to ignore [its] own rules." The rules alloow a school to request that the process bypass the Infractions Committee investigation, and PSU did just that, for fear of what the Infractions Committee would hand down. The NCAA BoD signed off on the settlement, and the infractions committee works for the President and the BoD.
I am not sure that 4 of the 32 members of the PSU BoD have standing to file a suit on behalf of the board.
The sooner Penn State fans realize this, the better.
Penn St just doesn't get it.
They crumbled immediately under pressure from the Paterno family.
They couldn't handle being out of the news for a week or 2?
they freakin agree to the sanctions? I thought that was the Paterno family's point - the Board agreed to penalties that they didn't have a chance to weigh in on. The whole thing is beyond f'ed up.
they didn't even know about them. The president, Erickson negotiated seperately, with the chairman of the BOT. The article claims that Erickson did ask outside council if he had the authority to buypass the BOT, and they said he did.
The BOT accepted that last week, but I believe - not 100% sure that a few new guys were elected by PSU alumni and those guys are part of the 4 demanding due process by the NCAA or a federal lawsuit.
The new president agreed to/accepted the sanctions/plea bargin in lieu of a full investigation/due process.
It appears that 4 BoT members don't like that he did that. I remember some questions as to whether or not the President had the authority to accept the sanctions when they came down, and it seems that at least a few BoT members disagree with the decision, and might question if he had the power to accept them.
/not saying it's right, just what their justification might be.
Yes - since the NCAA took the wins away from Joe Paterno's record (and he fell to #5 or so on the list) he (and presummably his estate) is an involved party who should have been given an opportunity to present their side of the case. It most likely would not have made a difference, but the process would have been followed, and there would be no standing now for the continuing saga.
Yes - the Penn State board of trustees should have accepted the Freeh report, and then submitted a statement that it was a long report and they needed a short period of time to fully review it before commenting on it. (Question: that report was the number one critical issue facing the board. Why in hell did they not drop all other agenda items and go through that report line by line and then release a statement to the public?)
Yes - given that the Freeh report says one of the key issues was lack of accountability and transparency with the board on the Sandusky matter, the president should have had the board involved in the decision process, and that should have been the argument back to the NCAA when the NCAA said he could not take it to the full board. The NCAA said Penn State needs to adopt all measures recommended in the report, yet in direct conflict does not allow the president to brief the board.
Also - given that the local police, and DA elected to drop the '98 case, if I were Penn State, I would argue they turned that one over to local authorities and child services organizations and it was dropped, so their punishment should be based on control issues starting with the 2001 incident. (Of course the corollary there is even if the DA dropped the '98 case, Sandusky should have never been given access to Penn State facilities, emeritus status, etc.)
While we're at it - No - the NCAA did not base the sanctions just off the Freeh report, Emmert said the Freeh report AND the Sandusky Grand Jury and trial evidence were considered as well.
All that said, Penn State did not turn the more explicit 2001 case over to local authorities, and thus were complicit in covering up a child molestor's activities from 2001 to 2009.
And, the Penn State President signed the agreement, and "In fact, while he had been consulting with Peetz and other trustees on the executive committee" he did not brief the entire board or put it up for a vote. Either way, done deal unless they push it too far.
Bottom line, Penn State has way too many board members, and that is the primary reason why they appear like a pushme-pullyou ...
Not defending their choice to challenge, but according to this article, the BoT didn't agree to the sanctions, just the president.
That article also states, however, that the chairwoman of the board of trustees and its executive committee were appraised of the sanctions and gave at least their implied consent to Erickson to sign the consent decree (with the threat of the death penalty still being held out by the NCAA).
sorry, double post.
Things are going to get awfully ugly if they fire Erickson and bring in a second replacment for Spanier. The in-fighting will destroy what's left. Imagine having to be the guy who brings everyone together. Tough, tough job.
Erickson is interim President. I think he only took the job with the understanding that the Board would commence a search for a new president. IIRC, he's leaving (or more properly, returning to his faculty position) after this upcoming academic year.
That will be one interesting search. They better get it right.
Well, then there are a couple of questions: does Erickson, as interim pres, have the authority to make the decision, even with The BOT's president in agreement? And what good candidate is going to want that job?
Erickson had been the executive VP since 1999 and he is scheduled to step down in June 2014.