An Inexcusable Tragedy
“Success with Honor”
For almost a half century, that has been the mantra of legendary
Amid the severe and lurid allegations that former defensive coordinator Jerry Sandusky sexually abused several children during and after his time as a
In 2002, a graduate assistant told Paterno that he witnessed
This past Sunday, however, Paterno released a statement saying that the graduate assistant who allegedly saw Sandusky and the boy was ‘distraught’ upon telling Paterno what he saw, and that “[he at] no time related to me [Paterno] the very specific actions contained in the Grand Jury report.”
That doesn’t pass the smell test. Paterno didn’t ask for specifics when this graduate assistant came to him “distraught?” For someone who prided himself and his program on honor and ethical responsibility, that sure doesn’t add up.
Yet most damning is the fact that once Paterno told Curley about the encounter, the authorities were not notified. Instead,
Curley and Schultz finally went to university president Graham Spanier—two weeks later—and told him that it was an incident involving “horseplay,” according to the indictment. Maybe that’s why Curley and Schultz face felony perjury charges. It wasn’t horseplay, and they lied under oath to protect themselves, and ultimately Paterno and the university.
The lines are clear. The
For the man known simply and affectionately as JoePa, it is truly a heartbreaking way to end one of the most storied careers in all of sports. He gave so much of his own time and money to the
The children Sandusky abused will never be the same. Now, thanks to the inaction of several men, the once-revered Penn State football program, led by the man whose used ‘Success With Honor’ as his rallying cry, won’t be either.