A New Low: The NCAA Reduced Penn State’s Penalties

A New Low: The NCAA Reduced Penn State's PenaltiesThe NCAA has taken a bit of beating over the past couple years. The clumsy organization has stumbled into one blunder after another. In fact, it has gotten so bad for the NCAA that several of the collegiate conferences have been open about a potential abandonment of the NCAA something I would support if all FBS level college programs were allowed to come along for the ride.

It has only been three years since it was revealed that schools attempted to buy the services of Cam Newton by paying his father significant sums of money. Buying the services of players isn’t allowed under NCAA rules, but in Cam Newton’s situation the NCAA found that it was not a violation for a son’s father to shop his son on the college football market. We can’t forget the sanctions levied against Ohio State for the players little ring of getting free tattoos in exchange for memorabilia and their coaches subsequent attempt to coverup the scandal. The penalties? A one year ban from postseason play, a reduction in scholarships, and three years of probation.

We certainly can’t forget about USC–the mighty University of Southern California, Trojans. The SC that was home to the Heisman Trophy winning Reggie Bush. For those who don’t know or don’t remember, Reggie Bush was accused of receiving inappropriate benefits from an agent while he was a student at USC. The inappropriate benefits? His parents got to live in a house for free for in a completely different city from where USC was located. The punishment? A two year ban from postseason play, a loss of 30 scholarships, a vacation of all wins from December 2004 through 2005, and four years of probation among other punishments. USC’s punishment is often considered the toughest the NCAA has levied since it disbanded SMU’s football program for a year in the 1980s. And when compared to the punishment Auburn and Ohio State got, USC may as well consider itself the bastion of hell.

That takes us to Penn State. Yeah, the school that had a hand in covering up and allowing many children to get raped and molested by a football coach associated with Penn State.  At OSU we’re talking about free tattoos. At USC we’re talking about parents who got to live in a house for free. At Penn State we’re talking about multiple children getting held down and raped by a football coach.  Let’s play the popular Sesame Street game of one of these things does not belong with the others. Well, Penn State got hammered pretty hard. The school got hit with a $60 million dollar fine, a loss of 40 scholarships, and a four year postseason ban. Honestly, the penalties weren’t hard enough.

The Penn State penalties look pretty harsh, or do they when you consider they were put in place due to child rape? Let’s be honest here, a football program that overlooks child rape all in the name of winning a few extra football games shouldn’t be in the football business at all anymore. Now we’re a year removed from those penalties being put in place and what does the NCAA do? Well, the obvious, the NCAA reduced Penn State’s penalties and eases up on the university that overlooked child rape. Great move NCAA.

What does the NCAA’s decision really imply to the public? Well, how about that the NCAA believes that a student’s parents in California who received extra benefits is more morally corrupt than a university’s actions in covering up child rape and child molestation. USC’s sanctions haven’t been lightened and neither has OSU’s sanctions. But gosh darn it, Penn State coaches haven’t been caught raping anymore children so it’s time to lighten up on the sanctions and send a message about how happy we as a weird and pointless organization feel about the actions of Penn State.

How did college sports go so wrong?

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