Should Penn State get the death penalty?

Eer I work with brought this up and got me thinking. They are being ivestigated by both the NCAA and the B1G (or were at least):

http://content.usatoday.com/communities/campusrivalry/post/2012/01/Emmer...

http://chicago.cbslocal.com/2011/12/08/big-ten-will-investigate-penn-sta...

Honestly, if what has been coming out this week at the trial turns out to be fact then I wouldn't have an issue with it. If Ohio State and Miami can go down for giving gifts with the coaching staff's knowledge than surely the types of things that alledgedly went down with not just the coaching staff's knowledge but the whole administration of the university's warrant some serious next level type of punishment.

This is uncharted territory for college football and I think only an extraordinary punishment will suffice.

But hey, maybe I'm wrong, what do yall think?

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Comments

This is a legal matter, not an NCAA matter

Asking the NCAA to deal with this is a horrible idea.

Absolutely correct. Anything the NCAA does will punish the kids on scholarship, not anybody involved in the cover up. It is absurd that they are even looking into it.

Viva El Guapo

Hell no

The actions of one perverted individual should not result in the death penalty. Of course Joe Pa, the A.D. and anyone else who might have known should have done more, but this is an entirely different scandal than those of SMU, Miami.

The culprits have already been dealt with and the school still has to deal with the embarrassment associated with this. That's punishment enough.

If UNC gets away with only a bowl ban

and a few lost scholarships, than no one is ever going to get the SMU death penalty ever again.

That said, the NCAA needs to let the smoke clear on the Sandusky trial before doing anything.

NCAA has no jurisdiction in Sandusky mess

While the Sandusky fiasco is horrendous and it is very difficult to believe that Paterno did not know and could not have done much more, the NCAA has no jurisdiction to levy ANY sanctions (let alone the death penalty) because the matter did not involve the football team or program, which is why there are no NCAA rules that govern same. The NCAA was designed to deal with fairness in collegiate athletics, which is not even of concern in the Sandusky case.

No offense, but that argument doesn't make any sense to me. People keep trying to label it the "Penn State scandal" but it is really the "Jerry Sandusky and a few administrators scandal." I just don't see why the NCAA should be involved at all. We will now never know what Joe Paterno knew, if anything. Fair or not JoePa's legacy has been tarnished, but the NCAA should not attempt to punish Penn State in any way.

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I'm from Pa and most of those not around the university have no idea how far this goes. The former district attorney for centre county went missing while in the middle of the 2001 and 2003 investigation into Sandusky. His computer was found in the river not far from Harrisburg. The now Govenor of Pa Tommy Boy was the state attorney general at the time and knew about both those cases. The cover up and the length of time to prosecute this goes on and on. They were protecting the football team and Joe. I have a family members who work for the university. They could tell you all kinds of things they knew was going on here. Many employees of the football program suspected something and no one did anything about it. All in the name of protecting Joe's image and the image of the program. If that isn't something for the NCAA to jump in on, then why have the NCAA. It's more than just recruiting and players. It's also includes coaching staffs and anything that is tied to the program. Why do you think the Gov waited till last year to finally start the process. They were waiting for Joe's last year and to make his record. If that isn't a shame too, I have know idea what is. That's why it goes much deeper than what one might read in the papers. I'm not a fan but did have great respect for Joe until I heard his quote about not doing more. That to me tells me he knew and had known for some time. Why don't you think Joe didn't name him as his predecessor. Remember the one victim talking about how Jer was so down from his meeting with Joe. Joe knew then and what the impact it would have had on him and the program. They did what they could do to keep it quite for as long as they could. I comend the reporter from the Patriot News who finially uncovered it all and forcing the hand of the Gov to get it going.

All of which sounds like criminal activity. NCAA polices athletic competition. The police should press criminal charges against those who obstructed a criminal investigation. The NCAA has zero jurisdiction. Of course, since the NCAA isn't accountable to anyone, they will do what they want to get as many PR points as possible and screw the athletes they hurt in the process.

Viva El Guapo

I think this issue is being handled by the correct authority. It's not cheating, so the NCAA shouldn't get into it. If it is true that a lot of people knew about it and didn't do anything, then they should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law, but punishing the team for something that's only related to the team because of facilities and coaches/former coaches is a little ridiculous IMO. Besides, I think we all know that the death penalty won't be handed out to a revenue sport again.

The B1G on the other hand... well, Penn State as an entity is a part of the B1G. It's not just an athletics thing there.

Achievement unlocked: All of the Fullers

The death penalty

would give the University closure and a line in the sand. Screw that. Let them flounder for years under this cloud. Its going to be difficult to recruit now with no JoPa and this cloud over the entire University. Let them play on Saturdays, and give reporters, bloggers, tv guys every chance to relive the story for years to come. Stopping them cold would remove them from the light, and allow them to come back a changed University. They had the opportunity to do that for years themselves but failed. The biggest punishment is making them play, with a scarlet letter of sorts.

Make them feel it, the entire University.

(I just hate that JoPa's legacy will be tarnished by all of this...)

I understand what people are saying in terms of this being a legal issue not a football one. And I get that. But isn't that kind of like saying a company can't reprimand an employee if they get busted for stealing a car? Or maybe more appropriately, a football program can't punish/suspend a player for committing a crime off the field (like stealing a bike or breaking into someone's house with an air gun?)

I understand that the NCAA governs the athletic activities of its members. But, like an individual program or any company, it can still have a set of minimum standards for its members/players/employees to abide by off the field, can it not? I don't think anyone is saying the NCAA should be the lead prosecutor in the Sandusky case (so Andy Staples' comment that the IRS doesn't prosecute murderers is well taken but I think a little misguided.) I think what people are saying is that if you run your program cleanly in terms of football but it is despicable outside the day to day athletic operations (like PSU appears to have been) then the NCAA should have the right to discipline you. Again, it would be similar to someone getting fired for stealing a car or Cody Journell being dismissed from the team for his B&E charge. It's not directly related to the scope of work but your actions bring discredit to your organization.

I can see the argument that punishing PSU's football program now doesn't really do much to affect the violators. Joe Pa is gone and Sandusky is being prosecuted accordingly. So punishing PSU only hurts the current players/students/fans who aren't to blame. And in fact, it may cause more harm as it could prevent the good people PSU from moving on. I can understand those points. But I do think the NCAA could make a case for doing something in situations like this. Should they here? Probably not, but if it were closer to the time that the horrific acts actually occurred, I would be all for it.

It's not within the NCAA's jurisdiction

As strange as it sounds that the NCAA could punish USC and Ohio State but not do anything here, that's what should happen. It's best left to the courts unless something else comes about from it that shows the football team or players received a tangible benefit.

This isn't about "jurisdiction"

I love how everyone is now a legal scholar :) Yes, the NCAA does not have jurisdiction here in the true legal sense. They technically don't have any jurisdiction whatsoever in the legal sense because they are not a legal/gov't agency.

However, they have the ability to monitor their members and discipline them within the bounds of their organization's rules. That's the question here... not whether or not the NCAA should do anything legally but should they punish within the framework of the NCAA.

Again, if the NCAA doesn't have the ability to punish its members (within its own system, not in a criminal sense) for non-football violations, then VT has no "jurisdiction" to suspend guys like Cody Journell and Dadi Nicholas.

I just think people look silly when they talk about this and things like "jurisdiction". The NCAA is a self-governing body when it comes to their rules (and for the record they suck at it.) But if they have rules that apply to this situation then its not a question of whether or not they can punish PSU but should they.

No one is saying the NCAA should be able to lock PSU officials up in jail. They are asking if the NCAA should enforce some set of rules to punish the program within the NCAAs operations.

The problem is the NCAA's rules don't cover these situations.

VT has jurisdiction to suspend players because the scholarship VT gave those players gives the school the ability to suspend players. I'm also assuming that VT has a code of conduct which applies to the students that the students agreed to accept upon enrollment which covers legal violations. It's apples and oranges. For the NCAA to punish PSU under their rules, they have to find an NCAA rule that PSU violated. There really isn't a rule they violated currently on the NCAA's books, unless you want to strain the reading of the current rules and create an awful precedent. Seriously, point me to an existing rule that applies here. The closest argument anyone has made is the general "lack of institutional control", which fails IMO b/c a) that usually ties into another existing rule, and b) you can't say PSU wasn't in control- they were controlling everything and that's the problem.

If the NCAA sucks at everything they do, why would you want them to go outside their jurisdiction to do something else? I'd think you wouldn't want them to make things worse. They just aren't designed to handle legal violations. They enforce rules related to amateurism, boosters, etc. They just don't have anything to cover criminal conspiracies, and grafting their already ill-fitting rules onto a situation they most certainly were not written for is a terrible idea. Nothing PSU did as far as we know at this point affected player eligibility. So yes, it is a matter of jurisdiction, no matter how much you may hate people using that word. The NCAA can't cover areas that it is not prescribed to cover.

PSU is looking at writing huge checks. The people involved are likely going to jail. The Department of Education and the feds are sniffing around. Why exactly does the NCAA need to do something when it's not completely clear they can? And again, if the rules say that the death penalty can only apply to repeat violators, and PSU isn't a repeat violator, how can the death penalty apply?