Penn State controversy

In Sports on November 14, 2011 at 8:11 pm

By: Drew Marshall

After over 50 years at Penn State, Joe Paterno was fired this past week for not reporting a possible sexual abuse case. Photo courtesy of Google images

In a shocking turn of events, the Penn State football team is under investigation after two officials surrendered to police on Monday. Senior Vice President Gary Schultz and Athletic Director Tim Curley were charged with failing to report a possible sexual abuse case by a former coach. The two also committed perjury in their testimony before a jury and their bail was set at $75,000. In this degrading event, people have turned to long-time head football coach Joe Paterno in criticism of his knowledge of the events.

            The charges were brought up when former assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky was accused of having sexually abused boys. Pennsylvania Attorney General, Linda Kelly, asked if the specific boys who were abused would step forward. Schultz and Curley are going to seek to have their charges dismissed. Paterno was not accused, and he was not called before a grand jury in the trial. Sandusky retired from Penn State in 1999, but the charges range from 1994 to 2009. Reports have stated that the two accused have no part in the physical abuse of the children.

            Though Paterno was not charged like his colleagues, he is still involved in the predicament. Many people are concerned that Paterno had some sort of knowledge about the incident. In his statement to the press, Paterno stated, “As Coach Sandusky was retired from our coaching staff at the time, I referred the matter to university administrators.” Many people feel fooled by the once great program that has become a powerhouse since Paterno became coach. Even if Paterno did not know anything about Sandusky’s abuses, critics of the program believe that he should have been more in control of the situation. The university obviously did not wait for the police to step in, as Paterno was fired earlier this week. If Joe Paterno did know about the events that took place while Sandusky was coach at Penn State, then he is an accessory to a crime and will be charged like his colleagues.

            The controversy at Penn State is upsetting to many people who have devoted their lives to the program. Paterno has helped build the program up to one of the best football teams in America and the Nittany Lions attract national attention year after year. Should the allegations prove true, the program could take a huge hit and the process of rebuilding would begin again.


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