National Columnist

Don't believe Graham Spanier for a second


Spanier's lawyers insist the Freeh report is flawed. (AP)  
Spanier's lawyers insist the Freeh report is flawed. (AP)  

I could let this one go ... but I won't. I can't. The Penn State story -- the one about pedophile Jerry Sandusky and the men who failed to stop him -- matters to me more than any story I've ever written about, and probably more than any story I ever will write about.

So when disgraced former Penn State president Graham Spanier tried this week to muddle the facts with a media blitz -- but left me off the invite list -- I invited myself to his pathetic little party. Who has the cake and the kazoos? I have questions for Graham Spanier:

1. How can you hide behind the I-didn't-know excuse when you were told by high-ranking school officials in 2001 that Jerry Sandusky had engaged in "horseplay" with a young boy in a shower on campus ... and failed to find out exactly what "horseplay" meant?

2. You were the university president with a myriad of responsibilities, and everyone at Penn State knows that -- yet whatever happened in that shower was disturbing enough that some of your top officials felt you needed to know. How could you hear their concerns of "horseplay" and just ... let it go?

3. You say you wish you "could have intervened" because it would have been your "instinct" to do so. Where were your instincts when your athletics director felt that whatever happened in a shower between a naked man and a naked boy warranted telling you?

4. Did you ask in 2001, "Who saw this incident, and when can I talk to that person to find out exactly what 'horseplay' means?"

5. Did you ever ask to speak to the witness, Mike McQueary?

6. Do you expect anyone to take you seriously, Graham Spanier?

Gregg Doyel is a columnist for He covered the ACC for the Charlotte Observer, the Marlins for the Miami Herald, and Brooksville (Fla.) Hernando for the Tampa Tribune. He was 4-0 (3 KO's!) as an amateur boxer, and volunteers for the ALS Association. Follow Gregg Doyel on Twitter.

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