Tuesday, 24 July 2012

Penn State University - "Non persons?"

American readers of this blog are doubtless familiar with the wretched, evil and sordid sexual abuse of boy children by an assistant football coach (Jerry Sandusky)  at Penn State University.  That man has been found guilty in a court of law.

A former Director of the FBI conducted a civil inquiry, and he concluded that the University was guilty of negligence and failure to act (perhaps even a desire to cover up) when the coach’s evil behaviour became known.

The Head Coach of Football at PSU for 45 years was a man called Joe Paterno. He died recently and cannot speak for himself.

 From what I have read it seems to be that he was at the very least “guilty” of myopia and negligence in the matter.

Into the picture comes the NCAA (National Collegiate Athletic Association), the “governing body” for college sports.

The NCAA has penalised Penn State.  As a result of this the University will pay a “fine” of $60 million, and the football team will be effectively closed down for four years.

Joe Paterno was a revered character at PSU.  During his tenure the football team won 114 games, and he was given the moniker of “winningist coach” in College Football.

Now comes (for me) the odd part.  The NCAA has “vacated” those wins and expunged them from the official records. Paterno is no longer the “winningist” coach in the NCAA record book.

This makes no sense to me.  (It would make sense if Paterno and his teams had been found guilty of cheating, or violating NCAA rules etc at Football).

But I fail to see (maybe I am also myopic) how expunging this record accomplishes any good.

Surely the record should stand  ---  with the understanding that Paterno was a great coach who tragically “didn’t get it” in the matter of child sexual abuse.

I cannot see any good purpose in making Paterno a “non-person”.

AND OF COURSE nothing I have written is in any way meant to mitigate or excuse the crimes of  Sandusky, and the failure of the University to exercise due diligence.

With you,  my heart, mind and prayers reach out to the boys (now men) who were violated by a man they trusted

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