I am not the biggest sports fan in the world. Heck, I only cared about college sports when I was in college. But the NCAA ruling on Penn State needs special mention. I want to state, before I begin writing anything, the acts perpetrated by those involved are absolutely wrong and horrible. These people deserve to be punished for what they did, or did not, do.
Stating this, though, does the NCAA have the right to tell players and coaches what to do, and do they have the right to punish players and athletes for off-court behavior? Yes, they do, there are honor codes that players and coaches sign. A simple honor code allows the NCAA to punish players who get a DUI and things of that nature, but does the NCAA have the right to take away a man’s legacy, and do they have the right to turn a top-tier program into a skeletal program.
I think we have to look at why the NCAA punished Penn State so strictly for Jerry Sandusky‘s child abuse scandal. They felt as though the program became to big, with a culture that allowed for these evil acts to take place without consequence. The NCAA said they wanted to knock Penn State back down to earth and help them get their values straight. Is that the NCAA’s job? I don’t know. Should they have taken the record for the most number of wins away from Joe Paterno? These are all difficult questions that I don’t think I have the answer to. This whole thing should teach men and women that they have to be accountable for what they do or don’t do and have to be willing to step forward and say something when they see something bad is going on.