In all my years working at ESPN, as I start my 33rd season this weekend on the Carrier Ship as North Carolina takes on Michigan State, it will be a special, special moment. But I must reflect on the Joe Paterno situation and the Penn State scandal. It is without question the worse I have witnessed in my years in all my years in sports. It is so sad what has transpired. What could have maybe been eliminated if people would have had the guts and fortitude to stand up and go to authorities to make sure this came to an end. I find it mind boggling when reading the Grand Jury Report that as early as the late 90’s that people were reporting Jerry Sandusky for being involved in scenarios that were inappropriate, to put in mildly. Yes I can’t comprehend how no one went to the police and the proper authorities. If only they would have stood tall and had some guts. To believe this went on all these years and everyone turned their back is hard to comprehend. There is no doubt the university had to move in the direction they did, firing the President and also Joe Paterno. It really breaks my heart because I have great admiration and respect for what Joe Paterno brought to intercollegiate athletics. But he fumbled this big time.
Yes there have been so many people that broke down. When I think of Penn State I think of a great university. But they were let down by their leaders. They were gutless at a time when they had to stand tall. And because of their lack of courage, many young people will be scarred for life. Tragic, and sad. To think about it, Joe Paterno 409 wins the winningest coach ever in Division I football, will now be remembered by this scandal.
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