The time is 1:06 p.m. on a Friday. I texted my father, who I assumed may have been on his lunch break at the time.
“NCAA restored all of Penn State’s vacated wins,” I sent.
“Just saw that. It’s about time,” my father, a long-time season ticket holder despite actually being a graduate of West Chester University, responded. “Now… where’s that statue?”
One thing at a time I suppose.
The NCAA announced Friday it had reached an agreement with Penn State and Pennsylvania state officials following a week of negotiations that will restore all vacated wins stripped from Penn State during the sanctions of 2012. All wins ranging from 1998 through 2011 have now been put back on the record books, with 111 going to Joe Paterno and one to Tom Bradley. Paterno, for the second time, is now Division 1 college football’s all-time winningest coach.
The agreement between the negotiating parties comes with some stipulations, which have already been approved by the Penn State Board of Trustees;
- Penn State agrees to commit a total of $60 million to activities and programs for the prevention of child sexual abuse and the treatment of victims of child sexual abuse.
- Penn State acknowledges the NCAA’s legitimate and good faith interest and concern regarding the Jerry Sandusky matter.
- Penn State and the NCAA will enter into a new Athletics Integrity Agreement that (with concurrence of the Big Ten) includes best practices with which the university is committed to comply and that provides for the university to continue to retain the services of Sen. George Mitchell and his firm to support the university’s activities under the Athletics Integrity Agreement and in the areas of compliance, ethics and integrity.
Penn State was initially fined a penalty of $60 million as part of the hefty sanction terms levied on the program in the summer of 2012. I have been on record of suggesting that if there is only one portion of the sanctions that Penn State ultimately fulfills, it should be the fine as a gesture of good will towards a worthy cause. Here’s hoping that money is used properly to spread awareness of child sexual abuse.
Everything else after that is some mumbo jumbo that essentially allows the NCAA to avoid getting grilled in court at a time when the NCAA has a number of issues it actually has authority to control brewing.
Penn State already had scholarship limits lifted and was given a chance to perform in the postseason two years earlier than initially planned due to positive reports from George Mitchell in his annual reviews of the university and athletics department.
So, now what?
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