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The NCAA's Reversal Of Penn State Sanctions Is Indicative Of A Bigger Problem

The NCAA is corrupt. And it makes its decisions purely based on politics and bias.

There, I said it.

The reason I say it is because the proof is in the pudding. The NCAA recently decided to reverse itself and restore 112 victories it had vacated from Penn State following the Jerry Sandusky scandal. You remember Jerry, I presume. The former Penn State coach who was found guilty of molesting numerous young boys while a coach, and in some cases, actually doing so to the boys on campus, within the athletic facilities.

When the scandal broke, the public outcry was so great that the NCAA had no choice but to show they would not stand for such sick behavior. So they handed down a four-year bowl ban, a $60 million fine, the loss of 80 scholarships and the vacating of those victories.

But that was then, when the heat was on. Since then, the NCAA has slowly backed away from those sanctions. It lifted the bowl ban and restored scholarship losses, and now is restoring the victories. What is that all about? If what Sandusky did - and Paterno and the university, by not recognizing sooner that something was going on, or ignoring it - then it is as bad today as it was back then.

Whether you agree with the severity of the original sanctions or not, you would at least be in the right to expect consistency from the NCAA. But consistency is not their thing.

Across the country, The University of Southern California was also hit with what some would say were draconian sanctions. They were forced to vacate all the wins from its 2004 season, thereby losing the national title it won that year, as well as losing the Heisman Trophy that Reggie Bush won that year. In addition, USC was banned from bowl games in 2010 and 2011 and, most seriously, they were hit with serious scholarship reductions for three years. At the time, many considered this the harshest penalties ever handed out by the NCAA short of the death penalty, which is the elimination of football from the school.

And what was it that USC did that was so bad that it was hit with the second worst penalties ever handed out, penalties they, unlike Penn State, got no relief from? Surely it had to be worst than a child molester taking advantage of young boys in the locker rooms and showers on campus while the university administration turned a blind eye. USC was charged with a “lack of institutional control” generally for not knowing that its star running back’s parents were living in a nice house in San Diego, without paying rent, as a wannabe sports agent courted them and Bush. That is it. Child molestation in one case, parents taking advantage of their star son in another case. Yet the case that is seeing the most reversal is the one involving the child molester.

Whatever the logic the NCAA comes up with, and some say it was the threat of lawsuits from several sources in the Penn State case and the influence of powerful political figures, it still comes out the same way. The NCAA has no clear way of governing and its decisions are based not on facts but on what benefits them at the time. The NCAA is out of control and needs to be investigated. When the governing body can’t be trusted, we have a real problem.

Photo Credits: WikiCommons


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