This is our third article on the topic of Jerry Sandusky’s arrest and the subsequent impact on Penn State.  That’s a lot of virtual ink for our little publication to give to one story.  However, nearly every writer on the staff is a pretty big sports fan, and this is one of the biggest sports-related stories in recent years – it warrants considerable coverage.  You might even see 1-2 more stories today, as I sent a couple of emails late last night soliciting articles responding to the breaking events.

Last night, heads began to roll, as Joe Paterno was fired after 46 years as head coach at Penn State and university president Graham Spanier was also fired.  I doubt these will be the only people fired. 

Here are some questions about the scandal.  These are presented as they pop into my head, and are not intended to be in order of importance.

What are the rioters thinking?

I understand the mindset of sports fans.  I’m a huge sports fan myself.  I spend much more time thinking about how to abolish the designated hitter than I do comparing the tax plans of Ron Paul and Herman Cain.

However, when the same news story involves kids getting raped and a coach getting fired, the coach is not the victim.  Focus on the kids.

What did Graham Spanier know?

Spanier insists that he knows nothing.  But if he really knew nothing, would he have been fired?  If he was fired without just cause, he’d have a great case for a wrongful termination lawsuit.  I can’t imaging that the trustees would be dumb enough to walk into a lawsuit.  (However, I’ve been wrong about that sort of thing before – sometimes state officials really ARE that dumb).

Interestingly, Spanier is president of the Bowl Championship Series (BCS).  If he is removed from this role, will this cause any changes to the BCS?

What did McQueary Tell Paterno?

There’s a discrepancy here.  McQueary says that he told Paterno the details of the shower encounter between Jerry Sandusky and the young boy.  When Paterno spoke with Athletic Director Tim Curley, he says that McQueary told him that Sandusky was fondling the boy or doing something of a sexual nature.

Was Paterno downplaying Sandusky’s activities?  Is McQueary lying?  Is Paterno lying?  Was there a misunderstanding?

However, the point becomes a bit moot when you consider that McQueary then met with Curley and VP Schultz (in charge of the campus police).  Regardless of what Paterno told Curley, McQueary had the opportunity to give his full story to Curley during that meeting.

Why didn’t McQueary stop the assault?

That’s a great question.  The only thing I can say in his defense is that perhaps he was in shock and temporarily lost the ability to make good decisions.

Why didn’t anyone go to the cops?

Another great question.  I heard Mike and Mike on ESPN raise a good point on this issue.  VP Schultz was in charge of the campus police.  Perhaps McQueary and Paterno saw his involvement as police involvement.

It would have been better, of course, to go to the police.

Why did Sandusky have access to university facilities?

Finally, an easy question.  He negotiated a status of coach emeritus, which gave him access to the facilities.

Why did Sandusky retire?

Sandusky stepped down in 1999 shortly after Paterno told him he would not become head coach at Penn State.  The official reason for Paterno’s proclamation was that Sandusky was spending too much time with his charity, and would thus would not be able to devote sufficient time to a head coaching role.

Is is possible that Paterno’s real reason was that he knew what Sandusky was doing and didn’t want to put a pedophile in the head coaching role.  (Isn’t it also interesting that the sitting head coach is making decisions on the future coach instead of the Athletic Director?)

Is it possible that Sandusky’s frustration at losing his shot at the head coaching job served as a trigger to his criminal activities?

Did Sandusky create The Second Mile charity just to troll for victims?

That’s a scary thought, isn’t it?

Where’s the grand jury report?


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Kosmo is the founder of The Soap Boxers and writes on a variety of topics. Many of his short stories have been collected into Kindle books.

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