A Penn State sponsored report examining the recent child abuse scandal was made public.
The most senior officials at Penn State had shown a “total and consistent disregard” for the welfare of children, had worked together to actively conceal Mr. Sandusky’s assaults, and had done so for one central reason: fear of bad publicity. That publicity, Mr. Freeh said Thursday, would have hurt the nationally ranked football program, Mr. Paterno’s reputation as a coach of high principles, the Penn State “brand” and the university’s ability to raise money as one of the most respected public institutions in the country.
Rick Riley, in a commentary on ESPN, weighs in on former football coach Joe Paterno’s legacy:
This throws a can of black paint on anything anybody tells me about Paterno from here on in. “No NCAA violations in all those years.” I believe it. He was great at hiding stuff. “He gave $4 million to the library.” In exchange for what? “He cared about kids away from the football field.” No, he didn’t. Not all of them. Not when it really mattered.
Can someone rationally explain why his statue should remain at the school, and why the football program should continue?
The Times details how many University of Oregon football players are taking American Sign Language to fulfill their foreign language course requirement. When one of them scores a touchdown, they put their hands together in the shape of the letter “O”. Now that they know what that symbol means, they won’t do it anymore.
“I did the ‘O’ once, and I never did it again,” said LaMichael James, the team’s star running back, who recently injured his right elbow. When discussing this, James spoke quietly so that those nearby would not hear. He would not make the sign. His elbow hurt, he demurred.
So…I now know one word in sign language. Probably won’t come in that handy.
About a week ago, “the” Ohio State University president Gordon Gee said that schools like TCU and Boise State don’t deserve to play in the national championship because they play weaker opponents and have an easier schedule than BCS conference schools:
“Well, I don’t know enough about the X’s and O’s of college football,” said Gee, formerly the president at West Virginia, Colorado, Brown and Vanderbilt universities. “I do know, having been both a Southeastern Conference president and a Big Ten president, that it’s like murderer’s row every week for these schools. We do not play the Little Sisters of the Poor. We play very fine schools on any given day.”
Yesterday, after it was pointed out that Ohio State’s “strength of schedule” was ranked 64th and Boise State’s was ranked 62nd, he said:
“I’m very blessed to have the best athletic director and best football coach in the country,” Gee said. “They run the athletic program and I run the university, and I should have stayed out of there. What I should do is go over to the surgical suites and get my foot extricated from my mouth.
“What do I know about college football? I look like Orville Redenbacher. I have no business talking about college football.”
He also personally donated money to a Little Sisters of the Poor home in Oregon, Ohio, and invited the Mother Superior to a game.
I don’t know of anyone that can successfully defend the absurdity of the BCS system, but I certainly love it when they try. (and yeah, he really does look like Orville Redenbacher…but if you look like that, why go all the way and wear a bow tie?)