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Removing the Joe Paterno Statue Should Be Just The First Step For Penn State 0

Posted on July 22, 2012 by Dean Hybl

The statue of Joe Paterno was removed from Beaver Stadium on Sunday morning.

During the recent debate about whether the statue of Joe Paterno outside Beaver Stadium at Penn State University should be removed, there have been passionate and legitimate arguments on both sides. Now that it has been made and the statue removed, my hope is that the decision represents a real willingness to change the culture of the school, rather than just another decision made to appease outside interests and to save face for a tarnished program.

Had the culture at Penn State been different over the last two decades it would not have changed the fact that Jerry Sandusky is a sick individual. However, if Paterno and other university leaders had been more concerned about doing the right thing and protecting innocent children, rather than protecting Sandusky and the reputations of the university and football program, the number of children whose lives were forever altered would be much smaller.

Since the story first became public in early November, it seems that most of the focus within the national media has been on the impact to Paterno, Penn State and the universities vaunted football program. I think one reason some believe the NCAA should levy harsh penalties against Penn State (which according to reports is going to happen as early as Monday) is that perhaps by punishing the football program it will help the university regain their perspective.

First off, I do not personally think the NCAA has any jurisdiction or legitimate reason to punish the Penn State football program. I do not believe that you can punish a program just because it has been given far greater magnitude to an athletic program than would seem logical. Heck, if you did that, then I think you could very much argue that any university that pays an athletic coach significantly more than the university president and spends more on athletics than on some academic programs could be lumped into that category. Read the rest of this entry →

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