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: Oct 24, 2007
Posted on: January 6, 2012 6:30 pm

What's with the misguided anger, Penn State?

The reason no one would touch it, is that the BOT fired Joe Paterno without having any facts -- and don't tell me about a Grand Jury Report that has already been shot full of holes.  IF the BOT had allowed Joe Paterno to finish the season, recruiting would be on track and a new coach could have been found more easily.  I know that the spineless, gutless, backstabbing weasels on the BOT don't care, but it would have gone better and frankly alumni like me will not contribute another dime to PSU without EVERY member of that cowardly BOT being gone.  Joe reported the problem to the HEAD of the PSU police, to the FREAKIN HEAD of the police department.  What the heck was he supposed to do?  Handcuff Sandusky to a blocking sled? 

Since: Jan 16, 2007
Posted on: January 6, 2012 6:07 pm

What's with the misguided anger, Penn State?

Good article.

Since: Apr 12, 2011
Posted on: January 6, 2012 6:01 pm

What's with the misguided anger, Penn State?

Personally, I hope the "Program" that did what that one did, that was so involved top to bottom in such stuff --- wanders in the wilderness for 40 years.

And that wouldn't be enough justice.

The SMU program got the death penalty for a little financial assistance to players under the table. What was going on at Penn State under the table deserves far more than that.

Since: Jan 9, 2008
Posted on: January 6, 2012 5:19 pm

What's with the misguided anger, Penn State?

Hey, CBS... ever heard of something called the Cotton Bowl ?  Not a word about it on your website and the game is tonight. It happens to be the only matchup of the SEC and Big12 in bowl play this year, although not the 2 teams that should be playing.

Since: Apr 4, 2009
Posted on: January 6, 2012 4:45 pm

What's with the misguided anger, Penn State?

Who said staff?  The PSU community goes way beyond staff.  Please let me be clear here.  If the University wanted to go outside then that is fine and there are certainly compelling reasons for doing so.

Since: Dec 29, 2006
Posted on: January 6, 2012 4:44 pm

What's with the misguided anger, Penn State?

Thanks for a fair perspective Doyel.  Tell Dodd to pound sand.

Since: Jul 28, 2008
Posted on: January 6, 2012 4:39 pm

What's with the misguided anger, Penn State?

"You are indulging in a classic case of blaming the messenger!  The media did not make this story up or create the situation in which PSU finds itself."

That is complete BS bobthe fa n. Pure fantasy. Every single piece of information, including McQueary's sworn testimony where he shows that he didn't even witness a crime much less something as horrible as rape, prove you are either a liar or so grossly misinformed that it demonstrates without doubt that the media are to blame. Period. End of discussion. Go do some fact checking before posting such nonsense.

Since: Jan 6, 2012
Posted on: January 6, 2012 4:36 pm

What's with the misguided anger, Penn State?


One of the first reasonable posters I have encountered. I am not blaming the messeger in terms of saying they caused this. There is absolutely no scapegoat here. There were some very heinous acts that were enacted by an indivudal and the PSU family is devastated by his actions. The perp and any enablers need to be punished to the fillest extent. But it has gone FAR, FAR beyond the point of reasonability to lump every Nittany Lion student/alum, just because. For instance, the journalist who said Penn State should change it's name, or Dan Bernstein from this very CBS literally writing that he can't wait for Joe Paterno to die, or the folks ripping the current football team members saying they shouldn't be allowed to play another game. That's where it has gone crazy. Too many pulpit moments rather than an adult discussion of what transpired.

I am certainly not one to be in any kind of denial as PSU is in a whirlwind of hell but some of this anciallary craziness just has to stop.

Since: Oct 8, 2009
Posted on: January 6, 2012 4:23 pm

What's with the misguided anger, Penn State?

That next "Hate Mail" article must be writing itself about now. Doyel's probably sitting at his desk like a kid on Christmas just waiting for the anger to flow in. I think he really enjoys it. I wonder what his face would look like if he didn't get any flack for this. I'm thinking a mix of surprised and disappointed.

Most of what he says here does make logical sense, though. Things are going to be rough for PSU for awhile. They're just going to have to make the best of a bad situation.

Since: Jan 17, 2007
Posted on: January 6, 2012 4:10 pm

What's with the misguided anger, Penn State?

Papa Blue (and other PSU alums with similar views):  You are indulging in a classic case of blaming the messenger!  The media did not make this story up or create the situation in which PSU finds itself.  Sandusky, and many enablers within the PSU family, are to blame.  Fair or not, the perception in the outside world is what counts, and once the stories of pedophilia began to emerge, nothing the media said or did could really make it much worse. 

There is simply NO WAY that someone in the PSU family could be made HC, and I'd venture to say that none of the assistant coaches can be kept on, either.  There would always be a nagging question about what they knew and when they knew it...and PSU does NOT want that kind of speculation to linger.  The only way to cleanse the program is with a completely "clean sweep" coaching staff, new AD, new President, new everything. 

It is a sad chapter in the history of a great university, in which no one with an ounce of maturity can take any pleasure.  My best friend is a PSU grad, and has been totally devastated by this episode.  He still loves his alma mater, of course, but he has been deeply wounded by all of this, as I am sure all PSU alums have been.

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