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Pittsburgh sports talk with the Trib columnist

Vacation Call: Wednesday discussion thread

By Dejan Kovacevic | Trib Total Media

I’m not working. But if I were, I’d point out in a brief piece like this that I don’t expect to hear from any more readers why the NCAA can’t or wouldn’t issue the death penalty to Penn State football.

Those were very strong quotes from the NCAA president.


  1. JRay3 says:

    Just thought I would carry over from the game thread.

    Well, just getting back and I can say definitively we never make it easy. What a bomb Cutch hit. That may be one of the hardest hit balls I have seen in person. Encouraging to see Erik Bedard shake off a shaky first and pitch into the seventh. Nice win for him.

    Have to give a quick recap of my evening. First, a woman in attendance asked if I could get Mike McKenry’s attention for an autograph. I yelled out to him and he came over to sign her ball, and I got a chance to speak with him, which was great. Super nice guy. Later, Jason Grilli threw me a ball from the OF when I told him I agreed he should have been an All-Star and that I read his quotes from the Syracuse paper. He laughed.

    So I went over to the OF and tried to get J-Mac to sign the ball and he told me he could not during BP, to which AJ Burnett said that is his line everywhere. So I then said what about you Jeff Karstens and he had me throw the ball to him. J-Mac told Jeff that is a fine. I said J-Mac if you sign I will pay your fine. Karstens then got J-Mac, AJ and Kevin Correia all to sign before tossing it back. Really classy guy and much appreciated. Told him he had a good start and to shake off the one half-inning and he kind of shrugged like no big deal.

    Later AJ Burnett came over and I got him to sign a ball for a 3-year-old whose dad asked me if I could. When AJ signed, I got a chance to tell him how much he means to the team and appreciate what he is doing for the team after 19 long years. He looked up and told me it was his pleasure and he enjoys doing it for you fans. Nicest moment I have seen from him in the few games I have attended.

    Great night all around, lots of Bucs fans out in attendance, and good to get back in the win column. Hope we can take the series tomorrow and close the road trip at 3-3.

    Go Bucs!

  2. twentytwo22 says:

    If they make it to the offday 51-40 I will be relieved. Even 2-4 will match the trip to Baltimore and Cleveland. Sloppy defense in 2 early innings, a bad leadoff walk by Bedard in the fourth, then they played well until with 7 outs left they walked 5 Rockies before getting the last out. That was a bad recipe. They can’t be happy about how they’re playing.

  3. twentytwo22 says:

    Good read, JRay3.

  4. Baywatch says:

    Thanks for sharing those special moments from tonight, JRay … made my night reading that.

  5. Curt says:

    Pirates need to win this series and get back home. Hopefully we see Marte this weekend or how about a trade to boost the offense.? Justin Upton had another nice night at Cincy. Just saying. Lol.

    As far as Penn State goes, I can’t decide what happens to the football program. He seemed pretty fired up in that interview and sounds like he is going to do something.

    Wonder if he could give them a yr or two off, which hits them hard without making it impossible to rebound?

    I’m going to say the statue comes down, the library keeps his name.

  6. JAL says:

    JAL’s Home Four Strong Winds Morning Links


    1- MLB Transactions

    2-MLB Trade Rumors-Pirates

    3 Go Buccos- Pirate News (from external sources)

    4 Pirates Prospects Draft Pick Signing Tracker


    5—Pirates Prospects

    Pirates Notebook: Extra Time Pays Off For Bedard; McCutchen and Walker Stay Hot

    Prospect Watch: Kingham Pitches a Gem, Marte Strikes Out Three Times

    Former Tribe Player Comes Back To Haunt Indians

    First Pitch: How Much Would a McCutchen Extension Cost This Year?

    Striking Out 16 or More Times in One Game Three Times in One Year

    6 Bucs Dugout

    Erik Bedard Helps Pirates Bounce Back, Win 6-2

    Competitive Balance Lottery: Ridiculous Rules, But At Least Pirates Will Likely Get An Extra Pick

    7 Rumbunter

    MLB Radio: Neal Huntington Talks About If There Are Any Untouchable Pirates

    8 McEffect

    7/17 Recap | Pirates 6 Rockies 2

    9 The Green Weenie

    Rox Round Two: Lineup, Notes

    10 Raise the Jolly Roger

    GAMEDAY: Pirates at Rockies

    11 WHY GAVS

    Game 90: Pirates 6 Rockies 2

  7. JAL says:

    NEWSPAPERS and MAGAZINES and Other Media

    12 CBSSports

    Pirates-Rockies Game Preview

    13 Denver Post

    Rockies fall 6-2 to the Pittsburgh Pirates

    14 Chicago Tribune

    Pirates Watch,0,6737528.story

    15 ESPN

    McCutchen sails to top of rankings

    16 The Kittanning Paper

    BUFFONE: Pirates Could be Hesitant with Upton

    17 Beaver County Times

    Perrotto: For Bucs, it’s Upton and away


    18 PBC Site

    McCutchen, Bucs even series with Rockies

    Notebook: Marte improving in all phases of his game

    19 Baseball Prospectus

    8 Things About Baseball We No Longer Believe

    20 Fangraphs

    Gary Sheffield’s 1993 Trade and Justin Upton

  8. JAL says:

    Steelers Blogs

    21 Behind the Steel Curtain

    Cortez Allen: A diamond in the rough?

    Steelers Sign Max Starks

    22 Steelers Depot

    -The Terrible Podcast – Talking Ray Rice Contract Structure & Angry Mike Wallace Email Episode

    23 Steelers Gab

    Steelers Re-Sign Veteran OT Max Starks

    24 Nice Pick Cower

    ESPN’s Clayton Says Steelers Are ‘Confident’ About Wallace Deal

    Pitt Blogs

    25 Pitt Blather

    Lawsuits Require Patience

    26 Cardiac Hill

    ACC Memories: Remembering The 2003 Virginia Tech Game

    WVU Blogs

    27 Metro News

    Scouting Report: Baylor

    28 WV Illustrated

    WVU Upgrading Brand at Mountaineer Field


    29 Sky Sports

    Transfer Clockwatch

    30 Daily Telegraph

    Arsenal striker Robin van Persie to discuss future with manager Arsène Wenger ahead of departure to Asia

    31 World Soccer Daily
    10 Ten stories you need to read, July 17th, 2012

  9. JAL says:

    Traveling on with Four Strong Winds, Ian and Sylvia, 1986 live version.

  10. dcpinpgh says:

    I drive a lot for work, so I get the chance to listen to the radio often. When the Big Ben thing went down, it seems like 93.7, after a time, stopped talking about it. The caller would start and the personalities would stop it, and move on to another topic. To me it seemed like the people wanted to talk about it, the radio station didn’t. The longer the PSU talk goes on, makes me think that 93.7 was kowtowing to the Steelers.

  11. Jandy says:

    On the road today. JRay, wonderful experience you had last night :)

    I can’t see the NCAA doing too much to cripple Penn State, it’s a business. I’ve already stated that I don’t see it being fair to the players, fans, and others who had nothing to do with the whole sordid mess. I realize it happens, but again, just sayin.

    A comment to Black N yellow…err gold. You took some time to comments on others’ comments on the blog yesterday. To what point? You took YOUR time to make fun of others. No, I wasn’t making fun of working, but rather, lightening my stressful day by making fun of myself. Anyway, rather spiteful of you, but then, there are trolls everywhere.

    Everyone, have a wonderful day. Maybe catch you all later.

  12. JMB says:

    Great post Jray — thanks for sharing!

  13. Paul says:

    All the talk about Marte being called up, it makes no sense. People keep talking about him like he’s tearing up the minors when he isn’t. An .854 OPS at AAA for a 24 is good but it’s not great. That walk total, walk to strike out ratio, stolen base to caught stealing ratio … they may have improved recently but they’re still atrocious and suggest he’ll struggle in the majors if bought up any time soon just as Brad Eldred did when he failed to learn to control the strike zone. And his power, well a lot of it comes in the form of those triples which are going to reduced dramatically when the defenses and fields he plays in are of the major league caliber.

    The player the Pirates should be calling up, the one who’s WAAAAAY over due for the call, is Jeff Clement. He’s done everything and then some to warrant another chance to split time with McGehee at first so Jones can play right exclusively.

  14. scapper says:

    JRay3…A wise man once wrote, “Put the pen down!” ha ha. Just kidding. Really good stuff and glad you had such a positive experience with so many Buccos.

    But your story does align with what DK was saying. The talking and joking you did with those guys will in the long run mean more than the signatures. I still have about a dozen autographs from going to countless games as a kid at 3 Rivers, and what I treasure now isn’t the ink but the memories of what actually transpired between the players and me. Willie Stargell looking at my Cubs hat, then looking me in the eye and laughing, “You got the wrong hat on, man!” or Richie Zisk giving my friend some mock hell when he asked what Zisk’s average was, Zisk in mock anger saying, “Guy, it’s time you start reading the papers!”,,,those are treasured moments from my childhood. Anyway, glad you shared your story from last night.

    (Disclosure: That same “wise man” also thought that getting Kovalev was a good idea couple of springs ago, so…)

  15. JMB says:

    It looks to me like Marte is 23, and he has an .863 OPS.

    By comparison, Cutch at 22 was in his third (albeit abbreviated) stretch at Indy in 2009, and he had an .853 OPS.

  16. Chuck Snow says:

    Offense looks like we need to clone Cutch….Oh I know how about Marte?

  17. JMB says:

    Too early I guess — Marte’s OPS is .854. I don’t know where I saw .863. Maybe it was .863 b4 last night.

  18. NMR says:


    Oh wait, what was I talking about again?

  19. radio wave says:

    Listening to national radio discussions of the Penn State situation yesterday, a small piece of information really surprised me.
    The Penn State Athletic department has a 5013c non profit tax status? How does that happen?
    I’ve come to the conclusion that shutting down the football program is probably what needs to be done.
    Everyone involved was trying to protect two R’s, their reputations, and the revenue from the football program.
    So now it’s time to remove that revenue, it’s the only language they seem to understand.

  20. dcpinpgh says:

    @ radio wave,

    I am guessing here, but since every other sport, except for maybe, men’s b-ball. looses money. That one can donate, to say women’s swimming, to help the team off set some of its losses. All other sports are non profit…but again, just my 2 cents and i might be due a nickle back.

  21. buggee says:

    >>> Everytime I hear someone discourse on the PSU mess I want to barf my daily Prilosec. Spanier would be the preferred target.

    >>> Don’t get me started on Kovalev, the Human Statue. Fire Ray Shero

    >>> Sweet post JRay. I enjoy seeing the “human” side of these guys. They’re not robots and they sure aint perfect.

    >>> Starkey piece on the BBHOF is a good, solid read. Nice job Joe (I know you read this blog cuz you’ve talked about it on your 93.7 show).

    >>> Pulling bigtime for JMAC tonight. Stay down in the zone, work quickly and get ahead early in the count. Bring it JMac.

    >>> Raze it yinz jagoffs

  22. Milo Hamilton says:

    Saturday July 28th when the D’Backs host the New York Mets at Chase Field – it’s Justin Upton bobblehead night !

    Can’t make this stuff up.

  23. CWalton_67 says:

    Last night’s game had a distinct “June/July” feel to it in terms of the bats. Cutch sent that ball into left field like a rocket. Been to a few games over the years, and the only ones I can recall hit like that were off the bat of Willie Stargell when I was a kid.

    Pirates must address right field. We’re simply not good enough to be misplaying balls in the outfield on a regular basis and continue to win. I’d almost think it would be worth putting Gorky’s out there instead of the other two, and just accepting that he is not going to hit. That’s not a long term solution, but it’s better than hearing the Bad News Bears theme song in my head each time a ball is hit to right.

    Really fun being at the game and there was plenty of Black and Gold in the stands. Highlight was Fort doing Zoltan out at second base after his double. He had a very nice game.

  24. LuckyNKentucky says:

    That’s one post for you, Milo.

    Excellent job, as usual. Great read. Some of the minor league parks I’ve been in make it easy to talk to the players and coaches. Makes the game more intimate. Even saw “Round-Trip” Kipper coaching a low-A team. Yes, he was the pitching coach, believe it or not.

  25. NMR says:

    The more that comes out on Spanier, the more I’m convinced that the leadership currently in place is capable of transforming PSU. It was announced yesterday that the Board of Trustees tried implementing a policy shift in 2004 that would’ve dramatically increased the openess of information and decision making. He apparently shot it down, and the board followed.

    In academic circles, Spaniers downfall could be seen almost as large as Paternos. Here was a guy in line to become president of the entire NCAA, universally respected among his peers.

    I truly believe that the majority of the Trustees remaining feel a large amount of guilt and betrayal for believing in these men. Will they try and protect the football season? Almost ccertainly. They know what the finincial impact. Will they ever let another coach or president yield as much power? After the reforms that will almost surely happen out of the Freeh Report, I think it’s almost impossible.

    Oh, and I guess I have to qualify my opinion by saying I’m PSU alum who is in favor of canceling the football season. It’s great having to state your unwavering allegiance to one side of an issue out of fear that some one will reply with a stupid, trite catch phrase like “PLAY FOOTBALL”.

  26. Arriba Wilver says:

    NMR—“Cabal” comes to mind, with Spanier and Paterno the leaders and the “unconditionally supported” Shultz and Curly the junior partners.

  27. JohninOshkosh says:

    Hi Jandy:

    Keep on posting, girl. We are all grown men and women who are capable of moving from work sites to leisure sites on the computer throughout the day and still being productive. I doubt anyone here doesn’t work their arses off or shirk their responsibilities. As for me, this was one of the few “entertainment” sites I cruise to on a regular basis, if you don’t count The Onion .

  28. JohninOshkosh says:

    should be “is one of the few” urgh….

  29. NMR says:


    Although I admit having to look up the meaning (your vocabulary looks down condescendingly on mine :) ), I couldn’t agree more.

    Frankly, that gives me the creeps…

  30. LuckyNKentucky says:

    What John said. Especially the arseless part.

  31. Lee says:

    DK, I think everyone knows where you stand on the PSU death penalty situation; you’ve stated your case on more than one occasion through columns, your blog, and tweets, and linked every posible story that supports your position. Time to enjoy your vacation and stop obsessing over this.

  32. NMR says:

    Nope. He’d rather retweet a drunk yinzer at 2 AM on a Saturday night. This IS how he enjoys his vacation.

  33. Arriba Wilver says:

    NMR—I double checked the definition before I posted. :-)

  34. Drew71 says:

    NMR – Arriba’s foolin. He are smart.

  35. NMR says:

    Who is this Drew imposter? The REAL Drew would never say something nice.

  36. Arriba Wilver says:

    Drew’s just mad I used a smiley.

  37. Drew71 says:

    Hint: when you THINK I’m being nice, read between the lines.

  38. Drew71 says:

    Smileys suck.

  39. Arriba Wilver says:

    EYE read between the lines.

  40. Drew71 says:

    Imitation is the sincerest form of p*ssing me off.

  41. NMR says:

    ^^^Hahaha, I’m going to use that one…

  42. Arriba Wilver says:

    So, when are we going to be able to “like” posts on this site? (note to Drew–don’t read between the lines on this post).

  43. Drew71 says:



    Take THAT, Smiley.

    You too, NuMeRator.

  44. NMR says:


  45. cmat0829 says:

    Was at the yard last night, can’t believe 42000 people came out to see the pathetic Rockies on a Tuesday night with no fireworks or promotions…. all the talk in Denver is on how awful ownership is, how the GM needs to be canned and on how Jim Tracy’s “aw-shucks” and throw everyone else under the bus style is getting old. I sense a good ol’ fashioned house cleaning in Denver…. shame as the fans here ARE coming out and spending the money and are being let down severely.

    I had to shake my head as Marco Scutaro, Michael Cuddyer and Jason Giambi (the great Giambino!) are taking at bats away from youngsters… free them already!!

    From what I could see from left field pavilion, besides Cutch’s absolute ROCKET LAUNCH that hit the back of the stadium wall, was that Sutton absolutely is a butcher in the outfield… Barmes played a flawless SS (but can’t hit, not for anything)…. and McGehee really takes nice approaches at the plate. It does beg the question though, why do pitchers keep pitching to Cutch…. me thinks the clock is ticking on him being walked with regularity… we need a thumper behind him (though for now, Walker may need to stay at 5 spot and not hit 2).

  46. Drew71 says:



    Well. There IS Dejan.

  47. Drew71 says:

    Wait. He’s on vacation. Allegedly.

    Where’s Thunder? He’s easy. So to speak.

  48. NMR says:

    All you Colorado folks need to stop with the updates. My Mile High envy is showing.

  49. JRay3 says:

    Just wanted to say thanks to those who enjoyed my early morning post. One of the things I truly enjoy about going to the park are those experiences and moments created. Yes the ball is just another item that goes into the sports room, but the story of how I got it and the brief communication there is with some of the players is what truly makes the moment special.

    Being able to tell a Mike McKenry how much I enjoy watching him play and how he has a flair for the dramatic and to hear his genuine appreciation back and to see how humble he was in his response is awesome. I just should have told him @ Ryan was ready to ship him off a few weeks back- ha!

    @ Lucky – I just have one question is the Kipper even qualified to be a pitching coach? Wow that brings back a name from the way back past!

    Headed to the park in couple hours and I am taking my admin team from here in Denver which includes one Rockies fan and one person whom has never been to a game, looking forward to helping provide that experience for her.

    Here is to J-Mac earning his 10th win and the Buccos heading back home with a series win! Let’s Go Bucs.

  50. JRay3 says:

    Just read a tweet from Buster Olney that said the two players with the highest OPS in July are both Pirates. – Cutch 1.594 and Walker 1.357….just awesome!

    I really hope the Bucs spend this off-season ensuring they get Walker locked up long term and make him another long term piece to the direction this club is moving in.

  51. JohninOshkosh says:


    Taking your staff to an afternoon ML baseball game. Are you guys hiring?

  52. Arriba Wilver says:

    Just have to add a baseball note in here. That ball hit into the right field corner would have been a hit if Gorkys had been playing right field. It would have been a hit if Clemente had been playing right field, if he had been positioned where Sutton was. At least that is my perspective from seeing it on TV.

  53. JRay3 says:

    @ JohninOshkosh – too funny, I gave them a goal to achieve and if they hit it I told them I would take them to the game, they did a win-win all around. Doesn’t hurt it gives me one perk with the travel.

  54. LuckyNKentucky says:


    Kipper has white hair, like mine, but he’s still kicking. If I remember right, his team shut out the Bowling Green team the night I saw them. He must coach better than he pitched.

    Have a great day at the yard and bring home another W. You, CWalton and cmat did alright last night.

  55. JHadar says:

    I was away for the weekend and caught up with other stuff when I came back. Yes, people who visit here do work on occasion. Still it was an interesting week.

    Just some random musings this morning:

    * Marte doesn’t need to be as good as McCutcheon or the second coming of Willie Mays to help this ballclub, all he has to do is be better than Gorkys Hernandez.

    * If I had predicted which games we’d win and lose since the all star break based on which pitchers were starting I would have got the first five wrong.

    * At the beginning of the season here’s what I remember thinking (when you reach a certain age you begin to phrase things about memory that way). (1) We would be right around .500 and here we are ten games over after 90. (2) McCutcheon would hit around .300 with maybe 25-30 HRs. Wrong again. (3) Neil Walker would hit around .275 with a .750 OPS and play good defense — he’s at .302 and .799 (almost .800) this morning (4) pitching would be fair and offense would be slightly above average (5) that St. Louis would run away with the division and we’d be fighting Cincinnati and Milwaukee for third. (6) Barmes would hit a disappointing .240 (7) Barajas would be a good defensive catcher and outperform McKenry at the plate.(8) we’d be sellers at the trade deadline (9) we’d sign our number one draft pick because the new rules made it almost impossible not to, and (10) Charlie Morton would have a breakout year. Oh, well, they can’t predict the weather all that well either. I suppose there were some other things that I got right, too.

    * The Big 10 has managed to get by with just 11 teams before. Still I would let the program live and ban everyone involved with the cover-up from athletics and employment at NCAA campuses for life. But if they do shut it down (which I don’t really oppose either), every athlete in every sport should have the right to transfer anywhere without restriction or loss of eligiblity. There’s no need to create innocent victims, albeit of a far far lesser crime, in righting a wrong.

  56. JRay3 says:

    @ JHadar – nice post…I agree with you on Marte but take it a step further would he be one of the best 25 guys if added to the team, not 26 but 25? I think he is, so he needs to be here.

    Great line about predictions based on the starting pitcher!

    I was listening to sports radio here yesterday and they were talking about Penn St. One of the comments struck me, they said would Penn St. erect a statue of Joe Paterno now if one was not up. The reply was a resounding NO, they said the statue should come down now, penalties need to be harsh including a one year stoppage of football and like posted above all athletes should be provided an immediate waiver to transfer where ever they would like without having to sit out any time. Just thought some interesting perspective from sports people in a place far removed.

  57. NMR says:

    I would love to know what the heck Spanier is doing with the Department of Defense that he could maintain his high level security clearance despite internal investigations.

    It certainly gives his attorneys ammunition.

    If he’s good enough for the government, he surely couldn’t have done anything wrong, right?


  58. Arriba Wilver says:

    NMR—can’t dispute he can keep a secret. (Too easy?)

  59. NMR says:

    I believe the Paterno statue should be removed, but not destroyed.

    Erasing memory of failed and flawed leaders is a dangerous precident.

    Statues down, names off Library, nothing to see here.

    Not the kind of message I want to send.

  60. NMR says:

    @Arriba – Too soon? Haha, I can share in a bit of humor.

  61. JRay3 says:

    Pirates Lineup today:

    Presley, Walker, Cutch, Jones, Mcgehee, Alvarez, Barajas, Barmes, McDonald

    Time for our 18th series win of the year today!

  62. NMR says:

    Couple numbers to reinforce Dejan’s great work analyzing the new MLB Draft Rules:

    2011 Total Draft Expenditures: $236 million
    2012 Total Draft Expenditures: $208 million

    Thats an average savings of under a million bucks per team.

    Take a bow, Bud Selig. You’ve really outdone yourself.

    What would the MLB possibly have turned into without your keen eye for controlling costs in the name of competitive balance?

  63. JRay3 says:

    @ NMR – wow those numbers are eye opening. I have said many times these rules were not put in place to stop the Scott Boras’ of the world that maybe the spin Bud and his cronies give but were put in place because the BIG market teams were upset at what was happening in the draft.

    It was the one area small market teams could take risks to try and compete (and one area the BIG markets didn’t want to have to play in given all the big deals they secure in FA). The Red Sox were upset when the Pirates were able to sign Josh Bell a player they had coveted.

    Thanks Bud, but as long as the Yankees and Red Sox are happy all is well with this game that you continue to tinker with.

  64. NMR says:


    I’m with ya 100%.

    Don’t forget about the epic “Competitive Balance Lottery” happening today where the Pirates have a chance at gaining an additional pick after the second round.

    That high 70s/low 80s pick should certainly make up for the lack of financial flexibility needed to sign an impact player like Mark Appel.

    Nevermind that Boras just proved that you now have to punt your entire 2nd-10th round picks just for a shot at signing someone like Appel.

    How can there be any possible support for these new rules?

  65. Eddie T says:

    I am part of a mixed marriage – my wife and daughter went to Penn State while I attended Pitt. In eons past when the schools played, we watched the game in separate rooms. I suppose that I will automatically be accused of schadenfreude, but I never had a problem with Paterno when he was just another good coach.

    However, Paterno became so sanctimonious that his fall reminds me of the TV preacher who is found to be stealing money or spending time with prostitutes. Few people can forget Paterno’s statement, when he turned down an offer in the late 1970s to coach the New England Patriots. Paterno stated that he could not leave college football to the likes of Jackie Sherrill (then at Pitt) and Barry Switzer. The implied allegation of dishonesty was obvious. Paterno’s so called grand experiment, to recruit and train a select group of true, honest, God-fearing student athletes (and by implication not the players at Pitt and elsewhere) always seemed like a fraud, and it always seems that the ones who most trumpet their integrity are always the ones to closely watch and guard against.

    The story on CNN about the Associate Dean of student affairs who was forced out at Penn State tells us everything we need to know about Paterno’s shortcomings as a leader and disciplinarian. Over at least the last decade, the penalties imposed on some Penn State players were a joke. That was a serious brawl in which some people were badly injured, when Paterno refused to impose meaningful sanctions.

    Of course, Paterno’s wrong-doing was much worse than the ordinary rules infractions. After reading the CNN story, I am more convinced than ever that Paterno indirectly drove the D.A. to suicide. Paterno committed perjury when he testified to a lack of information in 1998 and looks to have been the active ringleader of the conspiracy to cover-up. Paterno’s actions are all the more outrageously stupid, when considered in the light of the Catholic Church’s problems at the same time, world-wide. It was good to see the criminal conviction of the assistant to the Archbishop in Philadelphia. Paterno’s actions were no different, and led directly to the victimization of more children who never would have been harmed if Paterno spoke up.

    Paterno’s control over Penn State was never more graphic than the incident in 2004 when he was visited by the President and the A.D. about retirement, and he threw them out. AT that point, everyone knew that Paterno was running the school. In any ordinary organization, the President would consult with the Board of Trustees, call Paterno to his office, where the President would tell the coach that his career was done at that institution. Paterno developed such a heightened ego that he thought that he was more important than anyone at the institution, that he could do whatever he wanted and school President would obey. Paterno may have been a great fundraiser, but that should not have made him the de-facto head of the school. Anytime that a football program takes control of the school and then looks the other way while people are criminally harmed is a program which must be put on hold for a while, even after house-cleaning is done.

    Penn State is a fine school with a beautiful campus, many excellent teachers, and a large cadre of skilled and talented graduates. Penn State needs to rediscover its heritage as an institution of learning, and it is unfortunate that it will take the interruption in the football program to make sure that Penn State rediscovers itself.

    Postscript: A story in the Ann Arbor news attributes the Sandusky story as the reason why Michigan changed its mind and reported to the police that a doctor was seen looking at child porn, six months after the fact.

    Do not however be fooled into thinking that Penn State has changed, merely because it is now required to hold training for anyone who may counsel children. In all likelihood, that obligation was imposed by an insurance as a condition to continuing coverage. It would be interesting to learn what changes if any have occurred at Penn State and were not required as conditions by the insurer.

  66. likeabugonarug says:

    Disclaimer – As a Pitt Man, I probably am biased on some of this, but here goes.

    For me, I am glad the halo is finally gone from Paterno’s head. I’m sure there are other things out there that would show he wasn’t any different than other coaches at major D-1 institutions. Happy Valley was just able to contain everything very well within that valley.

    As much as I have despised the college on the farm in the middle of the great state of PA, I am not for the death penalty. Do I think they have earned it? Yes. And if this hasn’t, I’d hate to think what would have to happen for it to occur again. They ALL put the football program and all that revenue above the concern for the molested kids. And before it’s used that no one is still around, they all were still around hiding these incidents as recently as last November.

    However, this would have a big impact not only on the football team but also the community. How else are all these places of employment going to attract the volumes of customers they receive during football season? I have to believe that is a HUGE amount of their annual revenue. Is it fair to them? They are even more innocent than the current crop of players.

    My proposal would be to ban the football team from TV appearances and bowl games for 2 seasons. Any player that wants to leave is free to transfer and eligible to play that season. ALL revenue from the TV contracts, bowl contracts, etc… that would get divied out to the school would instead go into a fund used to repay the victims that were preyed upon because of the coverup. Players will still be allowed to have their scholarships, coaches will still get paid. Number of scholarships will be reduced for 2 years.

    The program itself needs to be punished, but punishing the community is not a reasonable response.


  67. NMR says:


  68. buggee says:

    >>> the PSU mess gives me gas

  69. buggee says:

    >>> “Play Ball” That’s what Jerry said

  70. buggee says:

    >>> Letang has to wear a fanny bag to throw hip checks

  71. buggee says:

    >>> The Pirates suck beyond belief. They can’t hit, steal bases, catch the ball, achieve consistent arm-slot, mismanage their swing-planes, zone-chase and they barrel their own dopey heads. (is “barrel” a verb?)

    Fire Ray shero

  72. buggee says:

    >>> I hear thunder. Nope, that’s gas from the PSU mess

  73. DemonDachshund says:

    Let’s hope Bud pulls a David Stern and gives a little wink-wink-nudge-nudge to the Pirates ping pong balls today as an apology.

    Yes, the system is MUCH worse as a whole, but I wouldn’t turn down having 3 top 50 or so picks next year.

  74. Milo Hamilton says:


    I have a feeling they won’t have that pick for long. You can actually trade these.

  75. Drew71 says:

    I see they don’t teach brevity at Pitt.

  76. buggee says:

    >>> I am absolutely STOKED about the Competitive Balance Lottery! Pirate fans worldwide should be as well

  77. NMR says:

    Lord knows the path to competitive balance is paved with 3rd round picks…

  78. DemonDachshund says:

    @Milo –

    Technically, that pick is a prospect. It has tons of upside. And we all know how NH feels about trading prospects with upside.

  79. Arriba Wilver says:

    Sounds like you went to the wrong University, Drew.

    Arriba Wilver, (sitting in for Thunder)

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