Collier: Corbett severely reconsiders

Published by Tim McNulty on .

Gene Collier has a typically excellent column on Tom Corbett's change of course on Penn State and the NCAA:

Corbett's reconsidered thoughts -- severely reconsidered thoughts -- regarding the NCAA sanctions against Penn State's football program could almost be summarized like this: "Well before most of the world suspected that Jerry Sandusky had ever done anything that wasn't totally upstanding, the NCAA was overseeing a coast-to-coast cesspool of rules violators, eligibility fudgers, probation-flouting academic frauds, extra-benefit traffickers, stripper-cavorting bowl officials channeling political contributions, recidivist coaches, and who knows what else, and was up to its bleary eyeballs in ongoing investigations.

"Not a lot has changed for the governing body of college football, except for the rare opportunity to turn one of its model programs -- in terms of academics and graduation rates -- into a pinata. Having failed spectacularly for decade after decade at doing what it's supposed to do, it grandstanded to death a situation where I'm not certain it was supposed to do anything.

"Penn State's fine was $60 million -- the Big Ten effectively piled on another $13 million -- or, as [NCAA president] Mark Emmert admitted on CNN, 100 times what the NCAA had ever fined anybody. Penn State's scholarship slashes will remove it from its accustomed competence for years to come and maybe forever."

Of course, that's not exactly what Corbett said Wednesday. That's what I said July 27, the day after the sanctions came down. Now, after what the governor called "months of research and deliberations," he rather agrees.

How about that?

While in the sports section it's worth going back to Gene's 2004 column on two young Akron men stabbed to death during the 2000 Super Bowl, in a fight involving friends of (now retiring and deified linebacker) Ray Lewis.

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