Last November, accused pedophile and former Penn State assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky sat down with NBC’s Bob Costas for one of the creepiest, most disturbing interviews in recent memory.
This was right around the time when details regarding Sandusky’s alleged molestation of 10 boys over a 15-year span were beginning to trickle out, and probably the point at which the case was got most of its mainstream attention. (These days it’s just the devoted followers. The crowd that isn’t too repulsed by the details to keep track of what's going on.)
Costas’ line of questioning was solid throughout the entire dialogue and, after the interview took place, many commended both him and NBC on not throwing Sandusky any softballs. Everyone understood that in order to get that sort of interview, a lot of personalities and/or networks would be tempted to agree to only lob weak stuff and use the whole thing as more of an attention-grabber than legitimate way of getting answers to pertinent questions. It felt like Costas and NBC didn't do that.
As it turns out, maybe everyone gave them a little too much credit.
Apparently, the good folks at the Peacock Network had 36 minutes of Sandusky and Costas going back forth, but only opted to air eight minutes of it. Yes, you read that correctly – eight minutes.
What sort of stuff did they leave out? Well, as noted by Sports by Brooks:
Here is complete transcript of Sandusky-Costas interview. 36 minutes. NBC edited it down to eight minutes for air. bit.ly/N0kjUw— SPORTSbyBROOKS (@SPORTSbyBROOKS) June 18, 2012
NBC didnt think it should air this Sandusky comment: " I didn't go around seeking out every young person for sexual needs that I've helped"— SPORTSbyBROOKS (@SPORTSbyBROOKS) June 18, 2012
NBC also decided to edit out this from Sandusky: " There are many I didn't have -- I hardly had any contact w/ who I've helped in many ways"— SPORTSbyBROOKS (@SPORTSbyBROOKS) June 18, 2012
The entire, complete transcript of the interview can be found over at Centre Daily.
It’s mind-boggling that Costas and NBC would decide against airing the Sandusky footage in its entirety. What could have possibly prevented them from showing the whole thing? A deal with Sandusky? Time issues? Content issues? And even if any of those things were the case, why not include a note of some sort so that the audience would know?
On Friday, a prosecutor from the Pennsylvania Attorney General's Office contacted NBC and asked for a full unedited version of the interview in question. According to the network, they agreed.
About eight months too late.