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Punishing Penn State football is a “dumb idea”


I used to work in Happy Valley and as a former Pitt alum, it was pretty unpleasant.  State College is a football town, noooooo doubt about it.  Come the weekend, I couldn’t get out of town fast enough, what with the unbroken line of alumni cars winding their way up Rt 322 and the snarl of the Nittany Lion on the radio after every song.  It got old really fast and was the longest two years of my life.

But I agree with James Carville that suspending Penn State’s football team is pretty stupid.  I don’t recall any of the current players being accused of sexual assault of boys.  Oh sure, the administrators and Paterno knew what was going on but what does that have to do with the players?  What does that have to do with the entire student body, except some of them took hero worship so far they couldn’t tell when their hero turned out to have feet of clay?  And anyway, Paterno’s dead, although it looks like he started his decomposition prematurely a few years ago.  Why in Gawd’s name didn’t he retire twenty years ago??

I understand the desire to punish.  But this is like, “I’m not saying it was your fault, I’m saying we’re going to blame you.”  Punishing the team creates a whole new set of victims.  Punish the coaches instead, fire all of the staff but don’t deprive the town, students and players from being insufferable football fans.  The quicker the right people are held accountable, the quicker the place can get back to normal.

Football is all they have.  Without it, State College is just plain fricking boring and they’ll be left to competitive cow tipping.