Penn State Scandal: NCAA Must Take Different Route Other Than Reported Penalties

Sam R. QuinnSenior Analyst IIIJuly 22, 2012

STATE COLLEGE, PA - JULY 21:  Items are left in front of the statue of former Penn State University football coach Joe Paterno outside Beaver Stadium July 21, 2012 in State College, Pennsylvania. Penn State's president Rodney Erickson is expected to make a decision on whether or not to remove the statue in the wake of the child sex scandal of former assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky. It's believed that Paterno had detailed knowledge of Jerry Sandusky sexually abusing children before and after Sandusky retired from coaching at Penn State.  (Photo by Jeff Swensen/Getty Images)
Jeff Swensen/Getty Images

The circumstances surrounding Penn State University's alleged mishandling of the child sex scandal involving former coach and the now incarcerated Jerry Sandusky are already bad enough.

Things are reportedly going to get much worse.

According to CBS Sports, the NCAA is planning to fine the university $30 million and the fine may be near $60 million in an unprecedented punitive action for an unprecedented, heinous situation.

Something else must be done.

Surely, one cannot feel bad for the university if in fact that are fined the aforementioned massive amount of money. Words cannot describe the egregious acts and alleged cover-ups that took place over such a long period of time, but monetary compensation is not enough.

A fine does nothing but to try to push this horrifying situation as far out of the public eye as possible. To make it disappear is entirely impossible, as many will share this story with their children for years to come, but people have been waiting for some kind of fine, sanction, punishment or whatever else can be done since the story first broke.

There may be more than financial implications too.

Per another CBS Sports report, Dennis Dodd wrote that "Penn State will be hit with significant penalties by the NCAA that could severely damage the football program's ability to compete."

These two penalties are nothing more than a quick way for the NCAA to save face during a time when it so desperately needs to. Sandusky is now in prison, Joe Paterno is no longer with us and those who seemingly turned the university's football program into some sort of monster are not in a position of power.

The NCAA is now catering to the wishes of the public instead of taking an effective course of action to make sure nothing like what Sandusky and other higher-ups did ever happens again.

Slapping the football program with the "Death Penalty" wouldn't do much either, but according to ESPN, that is not in store. Not for Monday's press conference at least.

Per Dodd's report, there are reportedly other ways to sanction the school's football program that don't involve the "Death Penalty."

A $30 million fine is a mere slap on the wrists to a once-prestigious school that reportedly raked in upwards of $100 million from the athletic department over the 2010-11 season, (according to Not even a $60 million fine would serve to rectify this situation in the least.

The school can spare the money, that's not a huge deal. Shutting down the football program does nothing but penalize innocent players who had nothing to do with what really went on.

This scandal needs to be made into a learning experience for the NCAA and the rest of college football. Of course, the university needs to be punished, but the punishment needs to come in some proactive form.

A one-time punishment is not going to get the job done. There must be an ongoing plan to make an example out of the university to not let other schools forget about what transpired.

Mark Emmert and the rest of the NCAA brass must formulate a plan to make an example out of the university in a way that stands out to other programs that have a handful of people who have as much power as Paterno, Graham Spanier, Tim Curley and Gary Schultz once held.

Paterno's statute has been removed from it's longtime post, but the pain of these incredibly sad events won't be alleviated through fines and the suspension of the football program.