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Good Bye Joe - He Gotta Go

November 10, 2011 - Michael Palmer
When the Teflon vest of former Ohio State coach James Patrick Tressel was stained by an indictment for not reporting infractions involving tattoos and players trading team gear resulting in his subsequent firing, I decided not to join in the debate.

The Penn State news has made me rethink that decision.

Everyone of any intelligence should have become aware many years ago that college football is no more an amateur sport than professional wrestling. I suspected that coach Tressel had indeed reported the incident to his superiors and trusted them to take appropriate action. That does not alleviate him of any responsibility or blame in the incident.

With the taking on of leadership comes responsibility. That being said, realizing that sending a torpedo into a Big 10 football program will most likely get you fired faster than being part of a conspiracy to cover up improprieties, which of us under that kind of corporate pressure would have done anything different?

The sad part is that once you have sold your soul, then if the truth comes out you are going to suffer the same fate as Tressel and now legendary Penn State coach Joe Paterno.

I read a very good article on that issue in the San Francisco Chronicle by Scott Ostler, a Chronicle Columnist.

It is worth a read. As one comment on the article said, "Cowardice and cronyism are what Paterno stands for from now on."

It is hard to imagine that an icon of football would end his career with nothing more courteous and ceremonious than a phone call after the scandal came to light.

I predicted the dismissal to Betty Pokas yesterday and said that despite his attempt to retire ceremoniously, he would not be on the sidelines Saturday. Do not read me incorrectly here, I am not happy about it, in fact it is a sad day for us all.

This puts a spotlight on what is wrong and broken in both sports and our modern world. When the almighty Penn State football program is placed above the welfare of children, especially in this context, how can we defend such action?

Enough about this travesty, I am done with it. The coverage on ESPN is non stop and I am just glad to be headed back out to the sidelines for some high school football.


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