If you thought Ohio State and Miami were the worst scandals in college football this year, think again. You haven’t seen anything yet.
A sexual abuse scandal involving young children and former Penn State University defensive coordinator Jerry Sandusky has rocked both the university’s integrity and the moral code of any sentient human being. Sandusky was once considered the heir apparent to legendary Penn State coach Joe Paterno before he retired in 1999.
Even after his retirement, he still used school facilities for his foundation, The Second Mile, which helps at-risk kids. Insert a “no wonder they were at risk” joke here.
According to CBS News, “Sandusky is charged with multiple counts of involuntary deviate sexual intercourse, corruption of minors, endangering the welfare of a child, indecent assault and unlawful contact with a minor, as well as single counts of aggravated indecent assault and attempted indecent assault. “
Even more startling in this investigation is the inaction of high-ranking Penn State personnel. According to an account on Fox Sports, Paterno informed athletic director Tim Curley that a witness had seen Sandusky engaging in what he believed to be rape of a young boy. No one at the school – including Paterno, Curley, senior VP of finances and business Gary Schultz, or president Graham Spanier – did anything to draw attention to the situation or help any of the alleged victims.
Curley and Schultz have already stepped down, and it’s only a matter of time before Paterno and Spanier’s jobs are called into question. If Penn State is smart, they will induce sanctions on themselves before the NCAA can get to them.
Spanier might be able to keep his job, but Paterno at the very least should be suspended for the rest of the season, if not fired outright. His storied career doesn’t excuse his indifference in such a serious matter. If Jim Tressel can lose his job for lying, so should Paterno for taking part in withholding such an important truth.