Blogs | Sports | News
Dejan Kovacevic's Blog

Pittsburgh sports talk with the Trib columnist

Death penalty? No, much worse

By Dejan Kovacevic | Trib Total Media

Thoughts on the truly exceptional punishment the NCAA has just levied against Penn State football …

>> Maybe the saddest outcome is that there will be too many at Penn State — and even a few is too many — who won’t fully grasp how devastating these penalties will be. All they’ll hear is that they’ll PLAY FOOTBALL Sept. 1.

>> This program is crushed for the rest of the decade. No elite recruit will play there.

>> Everyone breathing easier right now for State College residents and businesses is missing out on the longer-term issue that Beaver Stadium might not always be packed at some point down the road.

>> Joe Paterno is no longer the winningest coach. He’s not even in the top 10 anymore, thanks to the remarkable — and reasoned — vacating of all 111 victories from 1998-2011.

>> The death penalty was very much on table, even for multiple years. And Mark Emmert made eminently clear that the NCAA was very much within its authority, bylaws and everything else to rule as it did. I remain surprised that so many saw it any other way. Ethics means ethics. Nothing complicated about that.

>> Don’t compare this penalty to that of USC just because the forfeiture of bowls and scholarships is a year apart. This isn’t close.

>> It’s good and fair of the NCAA to allow athletes to transfer out immediately. But I don’t see that happening between now and the start of the coming season. Football bonds are tighter than that. The real effect of any exodus will come between the coming season and 2013.

>> If you’re wondering today how that will affect Pitt or any other college, that’s no better than the PLAY FOOTBALL mentality anywhere else. There’s no glee to be had here.

>> What of Bill O’Brien?

Did you know his pay now gets cut? Or that he doesn’t have an out clause?

At least for now, he’s saying all the right things. But this is a guy with a ton of pedigree at a higher level of football who couldn’t be begrudged in the slightest if he were to look out for himself. Especially if he’d been given any manner of assurance that nothing like this could happen.

>> There will be no appeal from Penn State, per a signed consent agreement. Of course there isn’t. Imagine anyone at the university, even if justified, protesting anything right now.

Just read Rodney Erickson’s statement.

>> I’m not moved much by the $60 million fine. As Emmert pointed out in the news conference, this is the rough equivalent of the $53 million profit Penn State made off football last year. It was the NCAA’s way of saying they’ll let the football go on, but all the money has to go with the kids.

I have to believe Penn State was going to make such a gesture, anyway. Would have been better to let the school do that unilaterally.

>> The Big 10, too, is fining Penn State by docking its annual $13 million take from the conference’s bowl revenues. That’s $73 million total, all toward children’s charities.

>> Can we please dispense with the trite labeling of anyone who sees Penn State as worthy of punishment as “sanctimonious” or being “on a high horse?”

It takes no more than a very, very low horse to have a strong opinion on this.

>> Can Jay Paterno and Franco Harris do themselves a favor and shut up just for today?

>> The NCAA finally showed guts. Who knew?

Please Enter Your Facebook App ID. Required for FB Comments. Click here for FB Comments Settings page

Other blogs
Sports:Steel Mill | Chipped Ice | Bucco Blog | iPreps | Pitt Locker Room | Penn State Sports
News: Backstory | Doug Oster on Gardening | Off-Road Politics | Flowback | ICycle  

» Top Sports
» Top News
» Top Breaking News