The NCAA said the $60 million was equivalent to the average annual revenue of the football program. The NCAA ordered Penn State to pay the penalty funds into an endowment for "external programs preventing child sexual abuse or assisting victims and may not be used to fund such programs at the university."
In the fiscal year ending in 2011, Penn State’s athletic department generated $116.1 million in operating revenue and posted a $14.8 million operating profit, according to school records.
Of Penn State’s 29 sports teams, only football and men’s basketball were profitable last year, with football generating an operating profit of $43.8 million on $58.9 million in revenue. The Nittany Lions had a 9-4 record last season.
A shutdown of the football program would have cost Penn State and the surrounding community more than $70 million, according to an economic study commissioned by the university for the 2008-09 school year. That included $51.1 million spent on hotels, souvenirs, food, services and entertainment by out- of-state visitors, which represent about 15 percent of those attending games at Beaver Stadium, which has a capacity of more than 106,500.
Penn State has an endowment of $1.3 billion, the Pittsburgh-Post Gazette reported in March, citing Graham Spanier, who was dismissed as university president in the scandal.
The postseason ban and the scholarship restrictions essentially prevent the program from fielding a team that can be competitive in the Big Ten. The N.C.A.A. will also allow Penn State players to transfer to another university, where they can play immediately, inviting the possibility of a mass exodus. Penn State will lose 10 initial scholarships and 20 total scholarships each year for a four-year period.
The NCAA is taking unprecedented measures with the decision to penalize Penn State without the due process of a Committee on Infractions hearing. The NCAA has a system in place in which it conducts its own investigations, issues a notice of allegations and then allows the university 90 days to respond before a hearing is scheduled.
Following the hearing, the Infractions Committee then usually takes a minimum of six weeks, but it can take upwards of a year to issue its findings. But in the case of Penn State, the NCAA appears to be using the Freeh report -- commissioned by the school's board of trustees -- instead of its own investigation, before handing down sanctions.
"Unbelievable," said a Penn State trustee informed of the NCAA statement, speaking to ESPN.com senior writer Don Van Natta Jr. "Unbelievable, unbelievable."
The Penn State trustees' hope that the statue's removal might send a positive message was trumped by the NCAA, which had already decided.
"Emmert has been given full reign by the pansy presidents (at other universities) to make his own decision," said the trustee, who spoke on condition of anonymity. "He has been given the authority to impose these unprecedented sanctions. It's horrible."
The greatest threat to the viability of the NCAA may come from its member universities. Many experts believe that the churning instability within college football will drive the next major change. President Obama himself has endorsed the drumbeat cry for a national playoff in college football. This past spring, the Justice Department questioned the BCS about its adherence to antitrust standards. Jim Delany, the commissioner of the Big Ten, has estimated that a national playoff system could produce three or four times as much money as the existing bowl system does. If a significant band of football schools were to demonstrate that they could orchestrate a true national playoff, without the NCAA’s assistance, the association would be terrified—and with good reason. Because if the big sports colleges don’t need the NCAA to administer a national playoff in football, then they don’t need it to do so in basketball. In which case, they could cut out the middleman in March Madness and run the tournament themselves. Which would deprive the NCAA of close to $1 billion a year, more than 95 percent of its revenue. The organization would be reduced to a rule book without money—an organization aspiring to enforce its rules but without the financial authority to enforce anything.
Thus the playoff dreamed of and hankered for by millions of football fans haunts the NCAA. “There will be some kind of playoff in college football, and it will not be run by the NCAA,” says Todd Turner, a former athletic director in four conferences (Big East, ACC, SEC, and Pac-10). “If I’m at the NCAA, I have to worry that the playoff group can get basketball to break away, too.”
This danger helps explain why the NCAA steps gingerly in enforcements against powerful colleges. To alienate member colleges would be to jeopardize its own existence. Long gone are television bans and the “death penalty” sentences (commanding season-long shutdowns of offending teams) once meted out to Kentucky (1952), Southwestern Louisiana (1973), and Southern Methodist University (1987). Institutions receive mostly symbolic slaps nowadays. Real punishments fall heavily on players and on scapegoats like literacy tutors.
Punishing the players and the fans, who did nothing wrong? Seriously? This is kind of bullshit.
The NCAA statement said Penn State’s leadership had perpetuated a “football-first culture that ultimately enabled serial child sex abuse to occur.”
Penn State should not be allowed to play another football game. It put sport, image and fundraising above everything else. That is what every cheater in college athletics does, and because of that it deserves the NCAA’s “death penalty.”
Southern Methodist University, one of the nation’s top academic schools, saw its football program given the death penalty in 1987 because it put athletic success above what so obviously was considered morally acceptable. Isn’t it now clear that Penn State did the exact same thing?
In fact, what the powers Penn State did was worse. Their actions involved not materialistic goods but defenseless victims who will suffer for the rest of their lives.
It is a grotesque farce of epic proportion. The NCAA is, historically, one of the most malignant, arbitrary, capricious and self serving organizations in the history of man; that they sit in judgment as they have today is criminal in its own right.
Once unitary power is claimed, it is never relinquished, nor applied evenly and fairly.
(Also, I should add, whether or not Paterno had a legal duty to report beyond Shultz shouldn't matter for firing decisions, either. People can be fired for doing things that aren't strictly illegal).
ut it does not contemplate regulation of felonious criminal behavior, even if it is tangential to a major college sports programThey're not regulating felonius criminal behavior. They're regulating a member program which created an unsafe atmosphere for staff, student athletes, and fans. I don't see why this isn't in their purview.
While we're at it, can we please vacate "winningest" from our lexicon of acceptable vocabulary?
Justice is being meted out by the state and will be also a part of dozens of lawsuits that will name the University.
Individuals convicted of a felony are prohibited from receiving a participant approval number from LexisNexis and will not be permitted to operate or coach at an NCAA certified event/league. Additionally, a sex offense, regardless of the charge level, will result in a denial of the participant approval application. Active criminal cases (including traffic violations) will also result in a denial if the case is within the last seven years. (pdf)
"Football will never again be placed ahead of educating, nurturing and protecting young people," Emmert said.
Sadly, Matthew's case probably can't be prosecuted given that he recanted his grand jury testimony. But it's likely a moot point because even one or two convictions were a probable life sentence for Sandusky.
If the NCAA and Penn State have any decency, even a shred of integrity, remorse or belief in regaining standing, the Penn State football program, the carrot used by Sandusky to rape children, the monolith that intimidated good people from coming forward and doing the right thing and the financial jewel Paterno, Spanier, Schultz and Curley protected at all costs, should be indefinitely terminated.
... allowing Penn State football to survive and profit -- as if this were only about a couple of kids who cheated on an entrance exam -- says that all of the rhetoric about accountability and protecting children was just exhaust, that compared to the importance of football, the university didn't care then and doesn't care now about children being raped on its premises. It is to retain the culture of intimidation and invincibility that has brought Penn State to this place. If a massive institutional failure that allowed young boys to be sexually molested on campus does not constitute reasonable cause to terminate the program and force true reflection, true change and true reform, nothing can legitimately deserve that penalty. The fear of Janitor B to come forward as a whistleblower in the face of power would be justified. Penn State football would indeed be invincible.
In doing so, however, it takes a sinister and dangerous step towards acquiring more power by dictating to a university what it must do with tens of millions of its own revenue and making it appear that it has broad, unspecified powers to impose moral authority.
If Penn State had not accepted the package of NCAA sanctions announced Monday, the Nittany Lions faced a historic death penalty of four years, university president Rodney Erickson told "Outside the Lines" on Wednesday afternoon.
In a separate interview, NCAA president Mark Emmert confirmed that a core group of NCAA school presidents had agreed early last week that an appropriate punishment was no Penn State football for four years.
A Penn State board of trustee member filed an appeal Monday afternoon with the NCAA over sanctions levied against the university after the Jerry Sandusky child sex-abuse scandal.
Three other trustees joined the appeal, which states that the consent decree university president Rodney Erickson signed with the NCAA agreeing to the sanctions is "null and void" because Erickson "lacked the legal authority" to enter into such an agreement without the board's approval.
Trustees and a person with first-hand knowledge of the discussions said the move is a precursor to a federal lawsuit asking a judge to invalidate the sanctions, because trustees expect the NCAA to reject the appeal.
Pennsylvania State University has been warned that its accreditation is in jeopardy unless it corrects conditions that contributed to sexual abuse of children by a former assistant football coach, Jerry Sandusky.
The Middle States Commission on Higher Education issued the warning last week, giving the university until Sept. 30 to report what steps it is taking…
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