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Jerry Sandusky Convicted Because of Courageous Testimony and Honest Deliberation

MonsterPatrick Smith/Getty Images
Brian KinelCorrespondent IIIJune 23, 2012

The monster will never again see the light of day.

Jerry Sandusky was found guilty on 45 of the 48 counts of sexual abuse he was charged with and will be sentenced in about 90 days. The maximum sentence Sandusky could receive is 442 years (via ESPN), which would run consecutively, not concurrently. He will obviously spend the rest of his life in prison.

The dad in me hopes the rest of his life doesn’t last very long. I pray that the rumored pecking order in prison is in fact reality. The pecking order that considers a child molester the lowest of the low and exacts revenge on the monster for the defenseless, innocent kids he so disgustingly harmed.

I’ve written and spoken often of the out-of-whack priorities so many fans place on sports. It’s unhealthy for anyone to worship someone because of a talent they have. Sports should be enjoyed for the entertainment they are.

The drama, competition and athleticism of the games can be spectacular. But the players and coaches involved in these games aren’t any better than the excited people who watch them.

Sandusky’s status as the defensive coordinator of the revered Penn State Nittany Lions absolutely played a major role in this tragedy. It gave him the stature to start a charity designed to help kids who needed something positive in their lives. It gave him the cover to prey on those same kids in the most heinous ways imaginable.

His position also seemed to paralyze so many adults who could and should have done more to stop this monster.

No more car rides
No more car ridesJeff Swensen/Getty Images

Doesn’t it seem a little strange that Sandusky resigned from coaching at Penn State after the 1998 season at the age of 55? A season that saw him honored as Assistant Coach of the Year?

Is it possible the University orchestrated that resignation? After all it came right after the first accusation was brought against Sandusky (via ESPN). An accusation that never saw charges brought against the monster.

I have four kids that I’ve coached in soccer, basketball, baseball and softball. When I wasn’t coaching them it killed me to miss a game. Yet when I was coaching I was often surprised at how few parents were at our games. When I coached young kids—around six or seven years old—it surprised me how often the kids were just dropped off at practice. I know that many parents have multiple commitments at the same time, but I saw far too much of it.

Parents, please be involved. Make sure you know the adults your kids are spending time with. This doesn’t just apply to sports, but to any extracurricular activity. I’m not suggesting that all coaches should be looked at as monsters, but I am suggesting you pay careful attention to how they are with the kids.

Talk to your kids and make sure they know they can talk to you. About anything. I’m sorry for seeming to preach and certainly don’t mean to act as if I wrote the book on parenting. I didn’t. My kids will probably say I clearly didn’t read it either. But I also can’t sit back and not do anything after this gut-wrenching tragedy.

I just wish the adults close to this situation over the years had felt the same way.

Follow me on Twitter @sprtsramblngman.

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