Far past the time when we should have been addressing issues on the practice field and maintaining a laser focus on the season ahead, the Sandusky Showergate scandal continues to dominate our coverage here at the Turkey. Some would say, “Enough, already!” hoping to move on, but the Turkey is stubborn in that respect (and many others). This whole sordid mess is just too intriguing to drop. Each day there are new revelations that make us scratch our heads in wonderment over when the little data islands will coalesce to make a coherent counter-story that will frighten even the most paranoid conspiracy theorists among us.
Here, for instance, Rich Scarcella of the Reading Eagle blogs that the NCAA did not threaten Penn State with the “death penalty.” Just another sportswriter’s unfounded conjecture? No. Scarcella is backed by the written word of Oregon State president Ed Ray, president of the NCAA’s executive committee, who has told at least two publications that no such threat was ever made. Ray is the man who stood alongside Mark Emmert at the notorious July 23 press conference where Penn State’s sanctions and the consent decree were announced. Compelling reading, and it opens the door to asking yet more questions. Who’s lying? Big thanks to reader Joe for coming up with this find.
Another “coincidence” unearthed by a reader, BigAl, is that the infamous Vicky Triponey now works for Dr. R. Barbara Gitenstein, president of the College of New Jersey. “So what?” you say, “She’s safely out of the way there.” Not so fast, Buckaroo. Aside from her aforementioned position at TCNJ, Gitenstein is chairperson of the Middle States Commission on Higher Education. That’s right, boys and girls, the accreditation body that just warned Penn State that the university is “in jeopardy”. Another case of Triponey seeking revenge for her unresolved love/hate/fear relationship with Joe Paterno during her brief tenure at Penn State? It seems more than coincidental that Triponey has relationships with both Mark Emmert, who hired her at University of Connecticut, and now, Gitenstein, who hired her at TCNJ. Is Vicky stalking Penn State?
Former Penn State president Graham Spanier, who remains a faculty member on leave, has stated that he and his lawyers might hold a press conference to tell us all what is wrong with the Freeh report. However, Spanier is still not clear of the potential charges that he participated in Showergate cover-up activities at Penn State, and that he had knowledge of crimes that should have been reported to authorities outside the university.
Meanwhile, as mentioned in the previous link, today was the day for the preliminary evidentiary hearing pertaining to the perjury and failure to report trial for Gary Schultz and Tim Curley, likely to be staged this fall or winter. Both Curly and Shemp have some high-priced, well proven legal talent arguing for them, while Moe has thus far escaped prosecution, as this supercilious Turkey mentioned above. But seriously though, folks, neither Curley nor Schultz showed up in person for the hearing and no rulings were made by the bench thus far.
Another take on the “culture of corruption” imposed on universities makes for some thought-provoking reading, as Lawrence Serewicz, an American living in the UK opines on the pickle not only Penn State but also many other large universities find themselves facing. His blog is Politics, Statesmanship, Philosophy, and he has written a book on the Vietnam war. This post is entitled “Penn State and the Crisis of the American University.”
That wraps up this issue of Sudden Impact. I have little doubt that some other story concerning the aftermath of Showergate will break five minutes after I pull the trigger to publish this, but that is life in the Penn State fast lane these days!
(The Nittany Turkey has ties to both Penn State and UCF, two universities recently sanctioned by the NCAA. Do I have a dark cloud following me around, or what? And no, I have no ties whatsoever to UNC!)