Blog Entry

What's with the misguided anger, Penn State?

Posted on: January 6, 2012 10:16 am
Edited on: January 6, 2012 10:42 am
Penn State people are mad, no furious, with the reported hire of Patriots offensive coordinator Bill O'Brien as the man who would replace The Man. Which means Penn State fans just don't get it.

And look, PSU people, I'm not mocking you. Not taunting you. Not enjoying your anger or frustration. You're going to see plenty of those people in the next few days, media people and otherwise, people who were so shaken by the Sandusky scandal that they take it out on anything and everything representing Penn State. And I understand their rage, I really do. But I'm not one of them, so don't miss what I'm writing here.

I'm trying to help. Honest. And what occurs to me, from my point on the periphery, is that there are people at Penn State -- even a truly intelligent insider like ex-PSU linebacker LaVar Arrington -- who are so close to the situation that they can't see it for what it is.

And what it is, for Penn State, is impossible.

The administration had no chance to win the press conference, as it's called when the new coach is introduced to acclaim. Whoever that guy is, he wasn't coming to Penn State. Not so soon after ... Sandusky.

It just wasn't going to happen.

The initial hint came way back in November when Joe Paterno was forced out, and the first name to surface was Mike London of Virginia. That's a humble name, Mike London of Virginia. Career record at UVa: 12-13. Four years total as a head coach, the first two at Richmond. And when London was connected to Penn State by media reports, he backtracked as if Penn State was something he almost stepped in.

That was our sign. That was your sign, Penn State fans: This job wasn't going to be filled easily, and as the following two months showed, it wasn't filled easily. Penn State alums didn't want it. Outsiders didn't want it.

Meanwhile, the Penn State administration was trying to conduct its coaching search in privacy, even secrecy, because there was no way the school was going to hire someone with a great resume if that hiring was leaked before it became official. So Penn State did what it could on the down low, and for that Penn State people are mad. I've been getting tweets all morning like this one from a Penn State fan lamenting the "secrecy and arrogance" of the search.

As if there's any other kind, these days.

There are Penn State supporters, LaVar Arrington among them, who insist the job should have gone to interim coach Tom Bradley. And that underscores my earlier point, about some people being too close to the situation to see it clearly.

Tom Bradley was never going to get this job. It would have been outrageous if he had gotten it. And that's not a shot at Tom Bradley, who gets high marks from every media person I've ever talked to about him. But he spent years on staff with Sandusky, and was on staff when this story exploded, and was even the face of the program for the month after the explosion.

That guy can't be given the job on a permanent basis. Not if this school is sincere in its desire -- and the administration sure seems to be sincere -- to put behind it one of the ugliest stories in college football history.

It couldn't be Bradley. It wouldn't be Mike Munchak. Even the sub-.500 coach at a basketball school in the ACC wouldn't touch it.

Other than Bill O'Brien, who was Penn State going to get?

Nobody, that's who. The complaining today from Penn State people is as misguided a reaction as the riot by students the night of Paterno's firing. It's anger for the sake of anger, but it's aimed in the wrong place. Sandusky should be the target. Sandusky, and those who didn't do nearly enough to stop his alleged reign of terror.

This is not Penn State President Rodney Erickson's fault.

This is not Bill O'Brien's fault.

Want to be mad, Penn State? Get mad at Sandusky. Get mad at former president Graham Spanier and former athletics director Tim Curley. Hell, get mad at Joe Paterno.

But if Bill O'Brien truly is your next coach, get behind him, and do it now. You are ... Penn State. Remember?

Time to act like it.


Since: Nov 24, 2006
Posted on: January 7, 2012 6:08 pm

What's with the misguided anger, Penn State?

Good article.

You touched on the 2 biggest points.

The 1st is Penn State had to bring in an outsider. Tom Bradley, nor anyone on his staff could be the next head coach. Penn State had to send the message that they've cleaned house.

The 2nd is that this is an undesirable job. Urban Meyer turned it down, Mike Munchak turned it down, that Virginia guy turned it down. Nobody that Penn State fans would deem "desirable" wanted the job. First, because of the scandal. Second, noboby wants to be the guy to replace the legend. They want to be the guy who replaces the guy who replaces the legend. Look how difficult was it for Alabama to replace Bear Bryant. Notre Dame still has yet to replace Lou Holtz. Nebraska has yet to replace Tom Osborne. Urban Meyer is one of the few to replace a legend and be as successful as his predecessor.  

Since: Oct 28, 2006
Posted on: January 7, 2012 4:22 pm

What's with the misguided anger, Penn State?

all you had to do was look at the committee appointed to hire the new football coach at PSU and you knew the academics were going to get their revenge on the football program.  not one football person on the committe, not one former player on the committee and an athletic director who is a medical doctor.  i'm surprised they didn't hire a vetinarian or accountant for the job.

Since: Jan 9, 2007
Posted on: January 7, 2012 2:36 pm

What's with the misguided anger, Penn State?

Similar defense of a program have been voiced in the past for what the guys at the top did: "the Third Riech needed protecting, what are a few jews?"

You are such a complete moron.  Comparing this to the holocaust.  What a fool. 

You don't know anyting, you don't know what McQueary actually saw, he's changed his story 4 times.  You don't know what Shultz and Curley knew, none of us do.  You certainly don't know what Paterno did other than contact his superior about something he heard second hand. 

Surely you don't think Sandusky would have not committed these alleged crimes had it not been for Penn State? 

The new coach just retained Larry Johnson Sr as a defensive assistant.  I suppose he was in on it?

Since: Jul 26, 2011
Posted on: January 7, 2012 9:04 am

What's with the misguided anger, Penn State?

Good article and the Penn State fans need to understand they are "Penn State" as Doyle has pointed out.  The incident and Sandusky have left a stain on the memory of the Penn State program but that is all.  There will be football again at this school and the University is so much more than the story people are talking about.

Since: Apr 12, 2011
Posted on: January 7, 2012 8:32 am

What's with the misguided anger, Penn State?

"Too much money was at stake and they had to protect the program."

Truly nauseating that "Nittany Lion" could think a cover up and continuance was OK on any level because money and the Penn State football program were more important than stopping sex abuse of children.

How warped can PSU backers be?

Since: Apr 12, 2011
Posted on: January 7, 2012 8:30 am

What's with the misguided anger, Penn State?

"The kid was just a casualty...unfortunately."

Yeah, what are a few kids sacrificed to keep a mighty football program competing well?

Nausatingly narrow minded view.

Similar defense of a program have been voiced in the past for what the guys at the top did: "the Third Riech needed protecting, what are a few jews?"

And, yes, defending a University protecting a silly sports program by covering, and therefore allowing the continuance for a decade child sexual molestation rises to that level of moral depravity. Few things do. But "boosters" defending and excusing child molesting as a needed and appropriate "sacrifice" for the good of a silly football program rise to that level.

Since: Dec 9, 2011
Posted on: January 7, 2012 12:15 am

What's with the misguided anger, Penn State?

Gregg Doyel, I used to hate EVERYTHING that was wrote by you I mean EVERYTHING to the point that I stopped reading articles, but then I got into what you read about the Bengals with Mike Brown being a lame owner and suddenly I have started liking what you wrote and this article is as true as they come 

Since: Sep 26, 2011
Posted on: January 6, 2012 11:05 pm

What's with the misguided anger, Penn State?

PSU will be known for this incident until the end of time. Just like you think of SMU and you think of the death penalty and my Buckeyes at the fools and their tattoos. . I thought the cover up that the vest did was bad but if any of these coaches remained silent the least of their worries will be a job. They will get a first hand education on shower edict in the big house. Also if they clammed up the NCAA will be in line right after the criminal justice system to get their taste of blood. Best thing O’Brien could do is bring all of his own people in and show any of Paterno people the door. People will always wonder who else had a hand in permitting and allowing kindergartners in the PSU showers.

Since: Jan 6, 2012
Posted on: January 6, 2012 10:02 pm

What's with the misguided anger, Penn State?

Doyle...I agree with everything that you said except getting mad at Paterno et. all. It was their responsibility to protect the university and the football program. Too much money was at stake and they had to protect the program.  The kid was just a casualty...unfortunately. They rolled the dice and 10 years later it raised its ugly head. That's life.

Since: Sep 7, 2006
Posted on: January 6, 2012 8:58 pm

What's with the misguided anger, Penn State?

I've pretty much defended Paterno throughout this mess, mostly agreeing with the Penn State peeps, but I have to agree with Doyel for once.  There's no reason to be upset about the selection of the offensive coordinator from one of the three best teams in football.  The guy coached alongside and was plucked by Belicheck.  C'mon now.  If you can't get a Nick Saban type defensive guru, than the program needed to infuse an offensive minded coach to keep up with the times a little bit.  I have no idea why anybody would think this was a bad hire.

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