NCAA President Mark Emmert came down hard on Penn State’s football program today, handing down some of the most severe sanctions in college sports history.
While the Nittany Lions did not get the death penalty, The Sporting News reports that it may take decades for the college and its football program to recover.
- All wins from 1998 through 2011 vacated, including 111 of Joe Paterno’s 409 career victories, dropping him from first in all time victories to seventh.
- A four-year postseason ban
- A $60 million fine, the equivalent of one year of revenue for the Penn State football program
- Forty scholarship losses – 10 a year for each of the next four years.
- All players can transfer and immediately be eligible to play at their new schools.
Penn State has agreed not to appeal the sanctions, which were handed down less than two weeks after former FBI Director Louis Freeh submitted a 267-page report condemning the role of university officials in concealing the Jerry Sandusky child sexual abuse scandal.
Sandusky was convicted of 45 counts of child abuse last month.
The $60 million fine will be paid over the next five years into a special endowment created to fund programs for the detection, prevention and treatment of child abuse, said university President Rodney Erickson.
“This total of $60 million can never reduce the pain suffered by victims, but will help provide them hope and healing,” Erickson said.
Said the NCAA’s Emmert: “One of the grave dangers stemming from our love of sports is that the sports themselves become too big to fail, indeed, too big to even challenge.
"The result can be an erosion of academic values that are replaced by the value of hero worship and winning at all costs. All involved in intercollegiate athletics must be watchful that programs and individuals do not overwhelm the values of higher education. In the Penn State case, the results were perverse and unconscionable."