Joe Paterno Statue Removed, Penn State to Face “Unprecedented” NCAA Sanctions

Screen Shot 2012-07-22 at 9.42.08 AMWhat will become a historic photo via (@csweddle)

On Friday, there were conflicting reports over whether the Joe Paterno statue would be removed this weekend. NFL Network reporter Kimberly Jones, a Penn State grad, tweeted that it indeed would be taken down. The Penn State board and a spokesman for the school quickly shot that down, saying no decision had been made. 

Well, a decision had been made.  

At around 7 a.m. this morning, workers began a two-hour process of removing the statue, with jackhammers. They worked behind a makeshift fence and blue tarp. According to CentreDaily.com, a Penn State spokesman watched from a skybox above. The statue was removed with a forklift

Screen Shot 2012-07-22 at 9.54.27 AM

Photo: CentreDaily.com

Penn State President Rodney Erickson released a statement early today. Some highlights:

Since we learned of the Grand Jury presentment and the charges against Jerry Sandusky and University officials last November, members of the Penn State community and the public have been made much more acutely aware of the tragedy of child sexual abuse. Our thoughts and prayers continue to go out to those victims of Mr. Sandusky and all other victims of child abuse. I assure you that Penn State will take a national leadership role in the detection and prevention of child maltreatment in the months and years ahead.

I now believe that, contrary to its original intention, Coach Paterno's statue has become a source of division and an obstacle to healing in our University and beyond. For that reason, I have decided that it is in the best interest of our university and public safety to remove the statue and store it in a secure location. I believe that, were it to remain, the statue will be a recurring wound to the multitude of individuals across the nation and beyond who have been the victims of child abuse.

On the other hand, the Paterno Library symbolizes the substantial and lasting contributions to the academic life and educational excellence that the Paterno family has made to Penn State University. The library remains a tribute to Joe and Sue Paterno's commitment to Penn State's student body and academic success, and it highlights the positive impacts Coach Paterno had on the University. Thus I feel strongly that the library's name should remain unchanged.

Coach Paterno's positive impact over the years and everything he did for this University predate his statue. At the same time it is true that our institution's excellence cannot be attributed to any one person or to athletics. Rather, Penn State is defined by our actions and accomplishments as a learning community. Penn State has long been an outstanding academic institution and we will continue to be.

I fully realize that my decision will not be popular in some Penn State circles, but I am certain it is the right and principled decision. I believe we have chosen a course that both recognizes the many contributions that Joe Paterno made to the academic life of our University, while taking seriously the conclusions of the Freeh Report and the national issue of child sexual abuse. Today, as every day, our hearts go out to the victims.

 

For once, Penn State did something right. Not just removing the statue, but allowing almost no time to pass between the decision and the removal. It setup an eery and, yeah, somewhat insensitive scene… but there was no other way. If there’s one thing the administration has learned, apparently, it was to not make significant decisions regarding Joe Paterno at a time when students would have a chance to fuel up with alcohol and grab their pitchforks. 

Of course, what comes tomorrow from the NCAA will undoubtedly shake Penn State and the college sports world.

Per a report form CBS, an NCAA source said there will be “unprecedented” penalties against both Penn State and its football team announced Monday at 9 a.m. Stay tuned.

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33 Responses

  1. Jerry….you are delusional….a History professor doesn’t bring in millions of dollars in revenue like a football program does dumbass. and for people that are arguing about how death penalty for PSU football is wrong and how it will effect the community because the community REVOLVES AROUND PSU FOOTBALL………UMMMMM HELLO????? that was the whole problem in the first place!!!! football before anything. football before protecting young children. football before doing the right thing. football football fucking football……..disgusted

  2. I agree with the gentlemen above. I have heard way to much about the infamous NCAA death penalty and the SMU story of 1986. The fact of the matter is that people have no clue what they are talking about. They think because it happened before it will certainly be issued again. The difference between PSU and SMU is the involvement of the football players. you know those guys that draw 100000 plus every saturday to Beaver Stadium. PSU players are as innocent as the young men whose lives were ruined by sandusky. SMU players were being paid to play and they were penalized for it prior to the death penalty. The NCAA will not punish the student athletes and Bill Obrien for something they never had a hand in. Plain and simple you can all hate Paterno and threaten his dead body all you want but the facts are the facts. The administration and the Board…and most liekly even all the way up to the governors office had a hand in the cover up….not the kids. I will be in Happy Valley every saturday to root on PSU. Jerry Snadusky deserves to rot in hell while the devil sodomizes spanier. that is all

  3. and John….yes the NCAA has every right to punish the PROGRAM….players will have options to transfer and other options….it’s not about destroying the players and athletes that had nothing to do with this….it’s about waking people the fuck up and letting them know that there are other things that are more important than FUCKING FOOTBALL!!!! if Paterno, Spanier, Curley & Schultz cared more about the people and the players they would not have covered this up…..

  4. Jenny2, hard not to agree with your anger, but you have to feel bad for all the collateral damage at the same time. This could shut down every sport on campus, even the intramural for the “everyday” student. You say the athletes can transfer, and the best of the best can easily, but what about the rest? And what about the local business that are going to take a huge hit? What about their employees and their families?
    Truly a no win situation.

  5. For Who For what…..it is what it was made to be….yes it’s sad but if nothing is done….then what can be said about Penn State? Do you think it would even still be appealing to potential students in the future? they have already lost out on athletes since the announcement of the Sandusky implications….they just need to do the right thing at this point…

  6. Sadly it’s just the way life works … I agree that it sucks that a lot of good people are paying the price for the mistakes of a few but they were hired, appointed and paid by Penn State University and the University as a whole most now pay the price for their non-action. Local businesses will suffer, students will suffer, the Penn State name will suffer but doing nothing would be a far worse injustice.
    We need to take off the blinders we wear as fans and alumni and start realizing that innocent kids were raped and their lives destroyed … All to often as a fans we fail to see the big picture but when I think about what I’d feel like as a parent of molested child or as a victim, screw Blue and White, Black and Gold, Red and White, etc … Sports is not above compassion for those who were left to be harmed to by this monster. The kids who most likely won’t get to play sports this year, they have a choice, they can go elsewhere … the victims had no choice.

  7. I’m a Penn Stater and can’t defend what happened. I’ll take my punishment. However, has anyone addressed the overall hypocrisy of the NCAA? It’s a system that promotes money first in a Capitalistic way (and I’m all in favor of Capitalism), instead of the school and the students.
    Why do you think we have repeated violations at Universities? Coaches exude the virtues of “THEIR” Universities and then move to another school with out sensitivity for the kids they recruited. Here is my favorite: at most universities on campus students aren’t guaranteed a ticket to the games because of money paid by alumni. Let’s use this to change the system; not just at Penn State!

  8. @Christopher Jacobs it’s not punishing current players….they will have options. how will it help? Chicago Sun Time reporter said it best….”Two years without football will allow a university to ponder how a program could become so monolithic that it needed to be protected at all costs — even at the cost of childhood, innocence and a chance at a normal life. Two years. That’s a small price to pay for such big sins.” you’re obviously missing the point…

  9. the argument that “we can’t let it hurt the football team” is the same argument that allowed such a travesty to occur in the first place.
    They should not be allowed to return to a “sense of normalcy” because normalcy at PSU means football comes before everything.

  10. PSU instituted their own death penalty by looking the other way for oh so many years. Do you really believe this program will ever be the same even without NCAA sanctions? Even with an NFL caliber ooach, talented high school players will commit to other schools with equally good academics so not to be associated with the stigma PSU will carry for many, many years to come.

  11. I’ve heard a rumor that they are already considering putting a statue of Fat Scott Paterno up instead.
    I’m still trying to check my sources.

  12. Joe Pa was innocent & did the right thing by telling his superiors. That’s fucked up they took down that saints statue.
    Rip
    Joe Pa- I love u baby

  13. Nobody has mentioned that Penn State football sucks balls anyway. Who cares if they can’t play.

  14. Aside from the embarrasment the Jerry Sandusky scandal would have caused back in 2002 when the decision was made to do nothing, the main motivation for the cover-up was the potential loss of money. I read somewhere that PSU makes $70 million per year from football.
    It’s obvious that as an institution, PSU needs some sanctions against them. Why can’t the NCAA forbid PSU to receive any of that money for a season or two? The current football players who had nothing to do with the scandal can get their education and play football. Penn Staters can continue to attend the games and support the school. The people and businesses in that area who rely on those games for their incomes won’t go into debt and potentially lose their homes, go bankrupt, etc. The money retained from PSU can be donated to non-profits who help abused children.

  15. @jeeny2.. Shut up and go back to the kitchen and get dinner ready . U are clueless ,Hun

  16. This is my question: What exactly is the NCAA punishing relating to the football program? If Sandusky were a former basketball coach and everything else remained constant, would the football team be punished? If Paterno weren’t involved at all and everything else remained constant, would the football team be punished?
    It seems to me that the NCAA can only really punish PSU football because of Paterno’s actions. He is the only one with links to the football program. Sure, Sandusky was a former football coach, but wasn’t involved with the football team at the time. If he were a former basketball coach, I don’t think the punishment would be any different. Since the AD and Prez were involved, it would make more sense to me to punish every PSU athletic team.
    So…that leaves us with Paterno’s inactions, mistakes, and possibly malicious actions. Though I am a PSU grad, I am 100% taking down the statue. I don’t understand statues of people anyway. The NCAA must be taking all evidence for sanctions from the Freeh report. I don’t think the Freeh report is biased, but it is obvious that many of the conclusions are based on speculation. Given the initial purpose of the Freeh report, speculation seemed warranted. However, for the NCAA to punish based on speculation is a very dangerous precedent to set.
    Will be an interesting explanation of why the given sanctions are appropriate.

  17. It sounds like they’re gonna cancel it for a little bit, which im fine with. There is collateral in almost any punishment, and as someone stated above, we cant put something on a high horse just because it’s sports. That was clearly a hige factor in this mess, and there are still a lot of idiot staters out there that dont seem to understand that.
    However, the sheer scale of collateral is unprecedented, and it should be taken into account. I think the best route would be to let the football program stay, and instead of axing it for two seasons, donate most of the ticket sales, product sales, and any revenue generated by penn state itself in regards to football, to child abuse foundations. The bottom line of the cover up was money and their image, which is just an extension of money in this case anyway. This way it would limit the collateral damage done to players, coaches, the marching band, businesses, etc. and also punish the school. I don’t know if the NCAA can legally do that, but it’s a thought…
    I think the real meat and potatoes in terms of learning a lesson about prioritizing sports should come from within the university and community itself anyway. Penn state and happy valley need to step up to the plate in a huge way. If I were a bar or business that benefitted greatly from the football program, donating some of my money to child abuse charities or trying to help the awareness for the cause would be something I’d think to do on my own anyway. Even if they had nothing to do with the scandal, things like that send a strong message and would prove to the nation that they’re not just about football,
    .

  18. Jenny 2 sounds like a cunt. If if my site, this is a guys only site tuts.
    I need a fucking statement from big Scott pa

  19. We can all rest a little easier knowing that the statue will never abuse another child again.

  20. Christian should learn how to spell…and 3 Finger Lenny has his 3rd finger up his ass…..Kyle is this really a guys only site? i wasn’t informed…and WTF is tuts? fucking dumbasses

  21. Won’t a fine on PSU also impact their ability to pay the settlements these tort victims have a right to? And then, the NCAA says screw the victims we get money because we make the rules? Yea, really great punishment

  22. Jenny 2- Beat it! This is a guys only site. Get back to watering the garden

  23. Warren – Penn State had hockey from 1939 to 1946. It dried up then but came back as a club team in 1971 and has been one ever since. They’ve been playing in the same on-campus shit-box rink since 1980.

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