Published Wednesday, November 9, 2011 AT 9:56 AM / Updated at 6:30 PM
Dirk’s Brunch Bites, Nov. 9
Dirk Chatelain Omaha World-Herald

Graham Spanier doesn’t get it. Joe Paterno doesn’t get it. The students who gathered in Paterno’s front yard Tuesday night and chanted “Beat Nebraska” clearly don’t get it.

That’s why the Penn State board of trustees should vote to call Harvey Perlman this morning and tell the Nebraska chancellor it’s not appropriate for Penn State to play a football game this Saturday, especially not on the campus where sexual crimes against little boys allegedly took place.

Cancel the game. Forfeit.

For the past 9 1/2 years, Penn State chose to worry about Penn State.

As Jerry Sandusky, alleged sexual predator, walked the hallways of the football facilities, Penn State officials had the chance to call police… or carry on with business.

How many times did Paterno or Tim Curley or Mike McQueary see Sandusky and consider stopping him? Instead, they chose to worry about themselves.

That must change. Reality must be re-oriented. Not at the end of the season. Now.

Somebody needs to make a statement that Penn State cares about more than winning games and upholding Paterno’s image.

Paterno’s immediate dismissal is one necessary step. Not playing Saturday is the next.

Football is supposed to be an escape from the daily grind. It’s too soon for an escape at Penn State, where the magnitude of what happened hasn’t sunk in.

If it had sunk in, Sandusky wouldn’t have been allowed anywhere near Penn State facilities the past several years. He was spotted lifting weights last week — long after Paterno and Spanier knew he was under investigation for sexual abuse.

If it had sunk in, Spanier wouldn’t have released a statement over the weekend “unconditionally” backing his embattled administrators — he didn’t even mention Sandusky’s victims.

If it had sunk in, Penn State officials wouldn’t have requested that all questions at Paterno’s Tuesday press conference be football-related — when Spanier realized that wasn’t going to happen, he canceled the presser.

If it had sunk in, Paterno wouldn’t have referenced Saturday’s game in a short message to his supporters Tuesday night.

And he sure as hell wouldn’t think he (or McQueary) has the right to coach on Saturday. This game will be a pep rally for Paterno. That’s a slap in the face to Sandusky’s victims — and to all who find the cover-up so disturbing.

A Pennsylvania grand jury found that a minimum of eight boys are living with the emotional scars of sexual assault. And Penn State is still worried about Penn State.

We all glorify college football — some of us even profit from it. We make its actors our heroes and our villains. It’s part of our culture. But times like these, football is not important.

For one week, Penn State should do the right thing. Shine the light away from the field. Let Beaver Stadium sit empty.

Forfeiting Saturday’s game would be a gesture of compassion to the victims. It would signal to fans and athletes that getting to the bottom of the mess is the highest priority. It would show that some things at Penn State are more important than beating Nebraska and winning a Big Ten title.

Why punish football players and fans who had nothing to do with Sandusky? Because this should be a time to reflect, not compete.

If Southern Cal players can accept a bowl ban because a former player received extra benefits, then Penn State can forfeit one game for the biggest college football scandal of our lifetimes.

Tuesday night, hundreds of people marched through the streets of State College, apparently in support of Paterno. How is this town fit to host a major college football game in three days?

And here’s the bigger question: Why would it want to?


>> Oklahoma State star wideout Justin Blackmon deserves a long look from Heisman voters. The last two weeks, he has 26 receptions for 377 yards and four touchdowns. I know the Big 12 is a flag football league, but the Cowboys are nowhere near national title contention without Blackmon.

>> 68 things to watch in college basketball. Some good stuff in here (sorry, no Creighton or Nebraska).

>> I forgot to link this yesterday after Joe Frazier’s death. One of the greatest Sports Illustrated stories of all-time. The Thrilla in Manilla.

>> Danny Woodhead has a children’s book. Cool.

>> Listen live on 1620 The Zone at 6 p.m. tonight for “Husker Insider.” Better yet, come out to The Loose Moose on 120th and Fort Streets. We’ll give away a bunch of free stuff. We’ll talk Penn State. I’ll try to keep pace with Matt Schick’s wit. Should be fun.


Editor’s note: We’ve gone in and deleted some of the comments that had collected on this post throughout the day. Readers are reminded that inappropriate language, insults and off-topic rants are red flags for the online staff as we’re reading through the discussion. Keep it clean and you won’t have any problems, people. Any further questions about the World-Herald’s commenting policy should be directed to online editor Ben Vankat:

About Dirk Chatelain

Dirk Chatelain is a staff writer for The Omaha World-Herald and covers Nebraska football and general assignments. You can follow Dirk on Twitter (@dirkchatelain) or email him at


  1. Jeff Seaman says:

    I completely agree with you, that Penn State should just forfeit the game. I’ve been a Husker fan since 1963 and just feel nauseous about this game. Yuck.

  2. nate says:

    This is the most inexcusable act I can think of to cover up but to punish the current players for their last home game is just ridiculous. Clean house with anyone who had knowledge and did nothing, but don’t punish the wrong people here.

    1. Sidney says:

      Yeah…because that never happens. Players never pay for the crimes of their predecessors.

    2. bleedred says:

      I very much agree,this game Must go on.We can not punish these current players or the fans.I do believe that Paterno needs to stay away……………………

  3. HuskerDave says:

    Not sure I agree about Penn State forfeiting; but I completely agree that the students, coaches, and administration that has been so adamant in their support for their own interests, and so negligent in protecting these young victims – don’t get it.

    This is NOT the time to be holding pep rallies outside Paterno’s house. Those students should be ashamed of themselves. They won’t be – we don’t shame people anymore (part of our nation’s moral decay) – but they should be.

    1. Robin says:

      I agree about not forfeiting. I’m not sure how that would work for our “wins” column. Since they forfeit I don’t think that is a “win” in our column which would put us two games back in the race for the championship game behind Michigan State.

      I agree what happened at Penn State goes way beyond morally wrong and strong action should be taken, but as a Husker fan, I don’t want to loose and ground on the race for a chance to play for a BIG 10 title.

      1. Chad says:

        Wow! I guess the short-sightedness extends outside of Happy Valley. I don’t think that Dirk was considering the Legends division race when suggesting that Penn State forfeit the game. The levity of this situation should extend past the football field, that includes Husker football. I’m as big of a Husker fan as there is and a season ticket holder, but I think that it would be completely appropriate for Penn State to not play this weekend. The fact that you, as a “Husker fan”, can’t see past the “race for a Big 10 title” is, quite simply, embarrassing.

        1. Highdef says:

          Chad, I’m guessing you felt the same way, back when Lawrence Phillips and Jason Peter were having all those headlines, too, right? I don’t recall any Nebraska forfeitures in our past. The errors of some shouldn’t cancel out the good of many.

          This scandal has been going on for 13 years. You wanna penalize the current PSU team and students for something they didn’t do? Chad, you’re the embarrassing one.

  4. KC Red says:

    Question to PSU fans. How do you go to this game and cheer? It all just feels filthy and disgusting. How does Paterno not follow up on this stuff and make sure the police are notified? How many little boys were assaulted after this was reported? How does Mike McQuery (sp?) not step in when he sees this assault happening. I mean, this is human being behavior.

    Those PSU fans out cheering on their coach should be ashamed.

  5. Dr Lewis says:

    You are right Dirk. While I feel bad for the players there is no way Saturday’s game is not a circus. And Penn State clearly still doesn’t get it. Shame on them.

    1. Highdef says:

      College football started to become a circus back in the days when Bowl games took on sponsors and changed their names. We’re way, way beyond the circus argument here. Every game day is a circus.

  6. Rick Foster says:

    As a longtime resident of State College, an alumnus of Penn State and a season ticket holder, I truly wish I could cancel Saturday’s game too. But I do not have that option. I DO have the option of demanding Graham Spanier’s resignation. So I will be at the noon protest on Old Main lawn today making my voice heard. My dilemma is what to do Saturday. I want to go to the game to show my support for the Penn State players because they deserve my support now more than ever. But I’d also like to show my outrage at the conduct of our coaches and administrators who were accomplices to a heinous crime by not attending and encouraging all fans not to attend. I can’t do both. So I will wear all black and hope Joe Paterno gets the message I’m delivering to Graham Spanier today… Joe, you are not wanted here anymore!

    1. Johnny_Nebraska says:

      Graham Spanier was never involved or to my knowlege even told about this. Graham is a good man and had he known of this you can sure as heck bet he would have gotten to the bottom of it. Spanier is the former Chancelor of the University of Nebraska! Yet another reason why we should play on Saturday and not let the sick and disgusting actions of one vile pervert subvert our traditions, reputations and honor!

      “Vengence is mine, sayeth the Lord.” Let justice come for all, but let’s reserve our wrath for those who deserve it!

    2. Gina says:

      I would like to say as a Nebraska fan I am sorry your players are having to go through this. None of this is their fault. To say this is a good time to have a game is not the truth but it will happen. All of the fans of both universities need to remember what this game is about. I wish Penn State would donate all money made from this weekends game to the victims of abuse.

      1. Highdef says:

        great idea Gina.

      2. Johnny_Nebraska says:

        That I can get on board with.

      3. Chris says:

        I don’t think that it should go to the victims of abuse, I think that it should go to the families that has been tourmented by all that happened at Penn State.
        I don’t want to see the game forfieted for many different reason, but one is that the young men taking the field had nothing to do with what happened to those kids. I don’t want to hurt someone else’s life because of this, enough has happened, we don’t need more. I have been a Husker fan my whole and raised two childern, and what happened there is completely unthinkable, should never happen, and should be swift and harsh punishment. But don’t be swift and harsh on those that had nothing to do with it.

    3. Mark says:

      Good for you. Support your team, but do not support the filth.

  7. Highdef says:

    great, great point Jeff!! We’re going to lose, so ok, let’s beg Penn St to forfeit, and if they don’t, let’s write articles about how disgusting they are. A new lower standard for us at Nebraska.

  8. Highdef says:

    Unfortunately for both teams, this just may turn out to be The Game of the Century: Part II

  9. Highdef says:

    I’m assuming ESPN College Game Day will now be switching from Palo Alto, Ca to Happy Valley, Pennsylvania

  10. Johnny_Nebraska says:

    No, Joe Paterno stays. Innocent until proven guilty is still how we roll in this country. Once the truth is revealed you may loose your fire and brimstone on the properly identified target!

    1. Husker John says:

      How many times have 9 (and counting) victims come foreward about sexual abuse and the accused was found guilty? If you can read the grand jury report. All the victims, many of whom were taken advantage of at different times and didn’t know each other, tell the same story of how Sandusky would molest them. It’s as plain as day.
      Joe Must Go! And Spanier and McQueary too!

      1. Johnny_Nebraska says:

        So Sandusky is a pervert and Joe and Graham have to pay for it? I don’t think so. Let only the guilty be punished. Let those who were deceived be shown that they were decieved. Let those who covered it up be shown as accomplices. Somehow I just don’t see Joe standing idly by if he had honestly been told the truth.

        Also, I don’t see how Graham is even involved in this other than he occupied a position that was never told of the issue due to the actions and possible decietful nature of his subordinates.

        1. Husker John says:

          Actually he was notified of the incident. You clearly haven’t read much about the issue and I’d recommend you read the actual grand jury report.
          Let me ask you this: If someone came to you with details that a co-worker molested a child in front of his eyes and you reported it to your boss, who didn’t do anything about it other than to tell him to stop, and you see that same child molester bring children to work with him, what would you do? More over, what is a leader supposed to do? Yes, Sandusky is the criminal, but if you know no one has gone to the cops and you don’t, how do you sleep at night? Joe Must Go!

        2. Johnny_Nebraska says:

          Yeah, and there is a reason why he is not on trial. He did not commit a crime, and he acted within the limits of his authority. Let’s imagine he did go the cops. The first question would have been, “Did you see this happen?” Paterno, would have had to answer, no.” “Who brought this too you?’ Paterno, would have had to say, “McQuerry.” Then the police would have gone off and interviewed McQuerry.”

          You are telling me, that he did advise the University of the Incident as he was directed to do in such instances. But that he is guilty of NOT doing something about it himself. Like, make sure the police were doing their jobs? Like making sure the Athletic Director was doing his job? Really?

          I am just curious, so not only is he the Head football coach, he IS the Vice President, he IS the Chancellor and he is also the Police Chief and the County Prosecutor too?

          He is a football coach. He is one of, if not, the best Football Coach. That’s it.

        3. Ruddman says:

          John you left of something: Joe is God at PSU. The man worked for Joe. If Joe had any issue or wanted any action done all he had to do was to open his mouth. He failed and thus he is in the same boat.

        4. Husker John says:

          He’s also THE leader in the community. He’s the indisputable face of Penn State and has been known for doing it “the right way”. This isn’t about breaking the law, yes he did what was the bare minimum required of him. It is about a legendary figure, known for his morality, completely failed at a time when the community needed him the greatest.
          And the scenario you laid out would have worked! The police go to McQueary and he tells them what he saw and Sandusky can be taken away in cuffs hours later. They already had another incident of him doing the same thing in 1999 so this would have been his last straw. That’s what leaders do: turn it over to the police.

        5. Johnny_Nebraska says:

          Paterno did do all he could do. It was the University Policy and administrators that failed. It was McQueary’s lack of notification of police that failed.

          Paterno didn’t WITNESS anything and he cannot fire a coach without cause. I know you would like to think that a head coach can fire an assistant coach but guess what, they have contracts too.

          If the University didn’t pursue the matter and take action against Sandusky, neither could Joe. Joe would have come to the conclusion that if the University didn’t take action regarding it, then it probably wasn’t a crime but behavior that was inappropriate enough to either get Sandusky retired or not re-hired.

          The University, if it did pursue the matter, found that a crime had been committed, then the administrators are culpable for not notifying police.

          Everything points to the fact that they did not believe McQueary. But McQueary did report the matter and the matter was reported higher by Joe Paterno.

          Where the idiocy comes in is people like you thinking that someone merely being accused of a crime has to be fired or imprisioned by the court of public opinion and not a trial of their peers.

          Granted the University could have handled the situation better. But to go after Joe on this is just dispicable. He did his job. Our current President made deals with Tony Rezco, yet there he sits in his office running the country.

          Joe’s biggest mistake was trusting the system.

        6. Steve says:

          The “system” is the police and McQuerry and everyone up the chain of command had a moral obligation to goto the police with this. The 10 year old should have immediately been identified and taken out of the situation. It is fine to talk about legal obligations but clearly Johnny_Nebraska you masking the moral obligation for JoPas benefit and do not seam to comprehend the basic ethical responsibilites of this case. Hopefully you will take an ethics class when you get to college someday and by the time the hy comes off your first name you will understand.

        7. Johnny_Nebraska says:

          I do not condone or promote vigilantism. If you wish to do so, do so at your own peril.

          Yes the system failed. But considering Joe wasn’t even a witness to the even and not a law enforcement officer and is apparently the ONLY reason we even know of this event, due to his reporting it, should be sufficient for most logical people to recognize he should not be punished for something he did report and did not participate in.

          Why don’t you re-read the endictment. Maybe then you will understand that Joe is the only reason there was an investigation.

        8. Steve says:

          WHAT IS YOUR AGENDA HERE? Joes is NOT the resason there was an investigation. Do you even understand why a grand jury was required in this case? Because no one went to the police with this. They had to investigate it themselves without any accusations and go to a grand jury with it to get charges filed. You appear to know absolutely nothing about the case, the grand jury report nor the judicial system in general. I feel bad for JoPa and even he gets it – even if it is with hindsight. Why you do not get this I do not understand. I gotta stop reading comments – makes me question the society I live in. Im out.

      2. Skytown J says:

        I work at a big company where there are lots of children around all the time. If someone who works for me walks into a bathroom, and sees someone I know sodomizing a child, and comes and tells me, then it would be sufficient for me just to tell my boss and forget about it? No follow up? Not making sure that action had been taken? And if none had, call the police myself? That is what some of you cretins are saying. If you tell your boss, your responsibility is met and you can just wash your hands of it? How about a moral responsibility to the victim, and futhermore to make sure there are no future victims? And even more laughable is for some of you to suggest that a man with the kind of clout that Paterno has at Penn St couldn’t walk into to any office he chose and insist that they get to the bottom of this. I’d rather be wrong and get fired, than to know that I didn’t do everything that I could to make sure this ended on the day I found out.

        1. Husker_Mort says:


    2. JG says:

      I agree with the “innocent until proven guilty” for the most part, but JoePa has already admitted he should have done more and when it’s kids involved I don’t have any sympathy for him, at all. Anyone involved needs to go away.

    3. Nard Dog says:

      Innocent until proven guilty? Paterno is not on trial, nor has he been charged with anything. He is guilty of being morally irresponsible. Proven guilty by trial of public opinion. What he did was wrong and his image will be forever tarnished. For that I say, FINE! Those kids didn’t have a chance, so why should JoePa or anyone else get to ride off with dignity?

    4. Johnny_Nebraska says:

      In retro-spect, he admitted he should have done more. Why? Because everyone else around him including the system he was asked to adhere too failed the kids. For crying out loud people, wake up!!

      Is he also the County Prosecutor?
      Is he also the town Sheriff?
      Is he also the Athletic Director?
      Is he also the Vice President?
      Is he also the Chancellor?

      You are asking this man, who has a mountain of responsibility already to also do the jobs of not only everyone else around him at the University, but everyone around him in the community too!

      I have no doubts that, at looking back, he wishes he would have done more. Because he now knows everyone around him failed to do their jobs. The difference between me and you is, I know that isn’t his fault. Apparently you all think it is.

      The guilty person here is the pervert who raped the kid. You want to cry out foul or incompetence at the University, fine. Get rid of the people Joe told about this, and who in turn, did nothing! I think you will find that Graham Spanier is not on that list.

    5. Stu says:

      Completely agree. Duke Lacrosse should make anyone pause and take a deep breath.

    6. Dobbs says:

      You are crazy to think that all Joe or the GA had to do was pass this up the chain. If you see someone get murdered in your company parking lot would you go inside and tell your boss? I suspect you would call 911.

      You walk in on someone raping a child, or someone tells you that his happened, you should have called the authorities or advised the GA to call the authorities with his informaiton.

      Everyone who was involved in this or who knowledge of this going on should burn for it. There is no greater crime then what happened at Penn State.

    7. Johnny_Nebraska says:

      Which is why I don’t think McQueary told Joe everything. Even though he says he did. Was he lying then or is he lying now. What we do know is an incident took place and McQueary says he told Joe and Joe told the AD. At this point that is all that has been proven. It has been proven because of the actions the individuals took. YOu know, evidence, not Hersey.

      Why didn’t McQueary call the police?
      1) He didn’t witness a crime.
      2) He did witness a crime and tried to use it to his advantage.

      Why didn’t Joe Paterno go to the police?
      1) Because he was not told of the crime.
      2) Because he did not witness the crime.
      3) Because he was told it was horse-play and not a crime.

    8. Dobbs says:

      You have to remember there was a campus police investigation in, I believe, 1998 regarding Sandusky and improper conduct with a minor. So given that and then add in the assumed “horseplay” conversation, wouldnt you take that pretty seriously?

      Its not like people are just accussed of molesting kids, right? So when someone mentions a grown man and “horseplay” with a minor in the shower I would probably start sending up red flags.

    9. Johnny_Nebraska says:

      Dobbs, agreed, but again, the only reason why we have even heard of this is because Joe reported it. If he had not, what would have happened then?

      1. Kiwi says:

        We’ve heard of it because one of the victims reported it to his high school 7-8 years after the report that involves Paterno. But you’re right about what would have happened if Joe hadn’t reported it – absolutely nothing. Makes you wonder if that (non-reporting of allegations) ever happened, doesn’t it? Interesting that the campus police and DA investigated an allegation against Sandusky in 1998 and in 1999 he was told he would not take over for Paterno and decided to retire. Sure seems like Paterno may have been aware of the 1998 allegation and knew Sandusky could not be allowed to take over the program. If there had ever been other allegations against Sandusky and Joe hadn’t responded appropriately (by contacting authorities), he couldn’t very well do so at a later date without the explosion that’s currently occurring. This whole thing stinks to high heaven, and Paterno smells as bad as anyone.

  11. Johnny_Nebraska says:

    You tell’em, Jeff!

  12. Gene O says:

    This will be a hard game to watch, even as a Nebraska fan. Should the game be forfeited? Maybe. If it keeps an ugly scene that has fans saluting Paterno as a hero from happening, YES.

    My opinion of Paterno wasn’t that he was angelic. Some of the things he has said before hinted that “The Program” was more important than anything else. But the way he reacted in 2002 and over the weekend shows those set of screwed up priorities and that he has no shame. His statements about doing things for the kids are now obviously a LIE. He doesn’t deserve to retire on his own terms. How many football games he won doesn’t matter.

    Joe Paterno should be fired immediately.

    1. Jason says:

      Agreed. Paterno shouldn’t have the opportunity to be carried off the field, saluted before 100,000 or any of the accolades deserving of a man of honor. His act was dishonorable and he doesn’t get to say how it ends – just like the victims of crimes he turned a blind eye to

  13. BIGRED1 says:

    Dirk, you cannot be serious on the forfeit. You’d not only punish the Penn State players WHO HAVE ABSOULUTELY NOTHING TO DO WITH THIS, but also the Nebraska players. It’s the administration of PSU not the players’ fault. Don’t let JoPa coach, but don’t blame these kids who had nothing to do with it. It will be a media circus anyway due to this and the fact it’s the last home game and Senior day. Plus, I don’t see how their players will have any type of mental preparedness for it but you have to let them play.

    1. Dobbs says:

      I think that the bigger point is that nobody should want to play this game with the information that has come out in the past few days. There is a bigger issue than a football game. I am sure that the players on both teams are just as angry about this as everyone else.

      1. BIGRED1 says:

        Dobbs, you are correct. Even though this will probably affect the PSU players the most, one can’t help but think the NU players have to know what is going on and their feelings on the matter and having to go their with the media frenzy that it will be on Saturday. Football is the last thing we should worry about and worry more about the kids involved in this atrocious scandal.

  14. Highdef says:

    The NU-PSU game will be a no-win situation for us. PSU wins, and “they were fighting hard for their school spirit”. PSU loses, and “their hearts and minds just weren’t in it”.

    This game literally is, walking into a lion’s den. All I ask Huskers, during the game, don’t talk smack, show class.

  15. Ben says:

    What good comes from canceling the game? Canceling the game does more harm than good. What is the positive for the victims by canceling the game. It seems that canceling the game serves more self-interest than playing it. The atrocious acts conducted by Jerry Sandusky are not the responsibility of the majority of the current football team. There are two people who are currently not being held accountable and they are McCreary and Paterno. If any message can be sent to the victims it would be to fire these two men and play on. Canceling a game is not a solution to this problem. Should they cancel the rest of the season? Where do you draw the line? The majority who have this point of view do not/cannot grasp the big picture.

  16. I absolutely agree with this commentary. Penn State only cares about Penn State. To have tolerated this for years at the highest level is an sickening. To say we will go on business as usual is an outrage!

  17. Greg says:

    Suspend, fire, give all involved parties a restraining order to keep off of campus, away from students, away from facilities until the results of the investigation are complete. They are innocent until proven guilty, but, for anyone who has read the affidavit, it is all grossly appalling and sad to see the inhumanity that man can perpetrate upon another human. The University should be clear and decisive without condemning as guilty any innocent parties.

  18. AtomMan47 says:

    Maureen Dowd’s column in the New York Times this morning says it all. I agree with your position although it would be much better is it had come from a Penn State beat writer, not one who follows the Huskers.

  19. NU FB says:

    This could be the stupidest logic I have ever heard… I don’t even know where to start the bashing…

    First of all, I read the court document, and I understand that Paterno took the steps necessary to turn it over to the higher-ups, and they were the ones who decided to cover it up. So fire Paterno? That’s stupid!

    Second, Penn State NEEDS the football game to draw some attention away from the situation and onto the football field. Cancelling the game would simply keep the attention in the wrong place, and would punish the athletes that have worked their tails off to be a one-loss football team this late in the season.

    1. huskerred says:

      Report to Jo Pa Friday evening…Sandusky sodimizing a young boy. Jo Pa reporting Sunday that some “…fondling or doing something of a sexual nature to a young boy.” I personally see this as less severe as what was reported to him. Heres the indictment you spoke of:

      Question at hand, is outlined under Victim 2. Seems like a real gray area to me at Jo Pa’s role.

      I do agree that the the game should go on; but not for the University’s sake but for the young men who are collectively called the team; as they should not be punished for what those who sit in a position of power failed to do.

  20. Nard Dog says:

    LOL! The more you read it the more he gets paid.

    1. Husker_Mort says:

      …but yet you are all still reading. Hmmm…

  21. Highdef says:

    Keep up the great work, Dirk. I don’t agree with everything you write, but I defend your talent. Ignore the mindless and uninformed.

  22. EOB says:

    The grad assistant who allegedly witnessed an incident in the shower (and failed to call the police!) is now a full-time assistant coach. The current staff is implicated in this mess.

  23. Ruddman says:

    After reading everything people have posted I have to say this: Some people need to get a life. Why do you slam Dirk for posting his option in a place where he gets paid to do so? I do not always agree with Dirk but to stoop to name calling is beyond me.

    Here is a question that has to be addressed; God forbid but what happens id Nebraska Looses the game and PSU wins there side of the B1G? Do they go out and get to play for the B1G championship and then have a shot at the BCS? How would all that pan out? This is why I have to agree that the forfet the rest of the season and pull additional shame away from a very toxic possibility.

    Oh fyi that was my opinion so I am sure I will be called an idiot as well.

  24. sasha says:

    In soccer (Euro-football!), they punish the team by making them play in an empty stadium. That way, you still play the game but hurt the team financially.

    An appropriate jesture would be to play the game in an empty beaver stadium.

    Just a thought,


    1. The Big Red One says:

      Under different circumstances I might agree..But on this..With respect..I’m sorry I can’t…PSU’s Athletic Department should be shut down in it’s entireity…At least until the authorities can sort out who *else* might be involved in this…

      Like I said in my previous post…I would be amazed if this doesn’t go a whole lot higher than just Sandusky…Someone has been protecting him…Someone…needs to ask why…

      1. sasha says:


        It is crazy. I’ve heard people talking about Dan Mullen (Miss. St.) or Schiano (Rutgers) coming in and taking the job, but I have noooo idea why those guys would. I don’t see Penn St. having the prestige it did before. The only recruits they’ll ever get at the in-state guys who are crazy about the program. The 50/50 guys who they could get before, are gonna leave the state for OSU/Mich and hopefully, now, NU.

  25. The Big Red One says:

    Btw…You can dollars to dime that this entire mess goes a lot higher than just the morally bankrupt people at Penn State’s Athletic Dept. The AD, the Chancellor, NCAA officials, all of them had to have at least some knowledge of what Sandusky was up to, and they chose football over the safety of the children they are entrusted with…

    And please…don’t anyone give me that line of BS that university level 18 -20 year olds are not kids…

  26. Chad says:

    Dirk, I read all your articles and normally agree with everything. I do think it would be unfair to not play the game. The seniors on that team have earned their senior day. They and their parents and family had nothing to do with the horrible things that happened on that campus. They have put their time in the community, university and football program. To take away their last home game, as appropriate as it seems, would be a harsh punishment for a group of young men that have done nothing wrong.

  27. Red Stripe says:

    Read the report:

    Yeah, you can argue the “alleged” part of this, and you can stick your head in the sand like the Penn State administration has done for the last 13 years. McQueary should be gone for good. How does one witness a child rape in progress and turn away to let it continue. Paterno should be gone for knowing this and allowing that scum to be around the program for the next 9 years.

    I live for watching the Huskers play Saturday, but when you have this level of institutional corruption and ugliness, it is wrong to play this game. Not unless you remove the guilty / accomplice parties from it altogether. As long as Paterno, McQueary and Spanier are still employed they should not be there. Gut the program and rebuild it from scratch, because it is rotten to the core.

  28. huskerred says:

    I agree with most of your article less cancelling the game. The administration is horrible and should have great conseques levied against them; however, the kids that play on PSU team should not be punished for the actions of the few. Its not their fault (the kids). I purpose that any coach; any administration personnel; be suspended and barred from campus until this is sorted out legally. The University Board of Regents and the Big 10 Conference in the best interest of the team (the kids) should do what ever is possible to give them (the kids) their right to compete; even if it means some retired coaches from around the country have to step as interim until the end of the season.

  29. bob jones says:

    Only a fool would not understand that we are way past the alleged stage, a janitor has testified under oath to a grand jury that he witnessed Sandusky assaulting a child, the former GA, who is now a Penn St assistant coach testified under oath to a grand jury that he saw Sandusky assaulting a child in the Penn St locker room, and now there are at least 20 victims that have come forward. Technically it is still alleged, but not in reality. Every adult in the State College area let these children down, there is a story now how an enraged parent had Sandusky confronted about an assault on her child in her home while police and prosecutors hid in the back listening and Sandusky admitted he did it, apologized and said he wished he were dead, and yet the prosecutor decided he didn’t have enough evidence to go forward.Strangely the prosecutor has just disappeared and can’t be found for comment. This was a dozen years ago, and if this cowardly prosecutor, who is now in hiding, had done his job then, this could have and should have been stopped a long time ago. Shame on all these cowardly adults, who sacrificed the safety of these children to protect their university and their heroes .

    1. Johnny_Nebraska says:

      Yeah, I don’t know how they train the police and prosecutors over there in Happy Valley, but as a general rule, when you get a confession of guilt, you can generally stop looking for suspects. Not always, but, generally that is how it goes. Now are we assuming Joe knew about this too? Was he supposed to pick up this with his super hearing?

  30. Lakewood Husker says:

    Not just this game, but the rest of the season. These crimes are directly linked to the football program and PSU needs to focus on righting what was wrong not try to distract attention from the situation with a collegiate atheletic competition. PSU also needs to understand that enabling a criminal of this nature is wrong and JoePa should not be allowed his final home farewell game.

    As for the current players, it’s called leading by example; these young men have to understand that football and money are not more important than the law.

  31. Rich says:

    I think that this is serious enought that ALL of college football should be cancelled for the rest of this year. Way too much of “what is best for me (this university)?” ; “what can we do to make our image the best?” (no matter what the cost), mentality. This can range from conference realignment (I”m not getting all I want here.) to covering up scandals (We cannot tarnish our greater than everyone else image.) Cancel all of college football and refocus on what football should really be.

  32. Tbone says:

    The game should not be canceled. However, PSU should rid themselves of Paterno, Spanier, and McQuerary ASAP so they are gone when the game is played.

  33. HuskerMark says:

    If I would have been McQueary, that poor boys rape would have stopped then and there. Sandusky would have been “detained” and cuffed by the police, bleeding on the shower floor. Heroes save. Cowards turn their backs. How any human being could have walked away from seeing what was happening in that shower is beyond comprehension. The fact that Mcqueary is still coaching is deplorable. How can any of the players in the program look him in the eye with any respect?

    Penn State’s first step should be to dismiss McQueary. He could have saved that child. He could have been a hero. Instead, he chose to save PSU’s reputation and walked away and perhaps used his knowledge of this incident to secure a long-term coaching position?

  34. HuskerMike from Lincoln says:

    Well said Dirk, well said….

  35. Blackshirtz says:

    The law recognizes that minors lack the capacity to consent to sexual contact. Irrespective of notions of morality or consent, what occurred was rape. The end.

  36. Cara says:

    I know there will be people that will say this is stupid, but in all honesty this is the only thing I can think of that would in all honesty make sense but it’s way too late to do this, so had this all came out last week I would vote we move the game to Nebraska or at the very least at another venue. I know that would mean a change of travel on both teams, but I honestly think it would be well worth it. My heart breaks and cries for those boys who were raped.
    Was is it Paterno’s duty as a Football Coach to do anything more?? No, he did was he was required to do.
    Was is it Paterno’s duty as a Christian, Role Model, & Human Being?? Yes, that is where he failed, and judging by his actions he knows he should’ve done more, had he been able to do it again, he would’ve done more. He failed those boys who had already been abused and the ones who hadn’t met Sandusky yet, by staying quiet. I know some of you are going to say it wasn’t his job, but let me tell you this, had he made just one phone call to the police that would’ve ended Sandusky’s abuse. Sad thing is you hear more people talk about more if I would’ves in this case than anything. If Dr Tom were in this position I’d be saying the same thing. As much as I respect Coach Joe, I do agree with him stepping down, I just don’t agree with the timeline. In respect for those who were abused his last game should’ve been last week, but I also know that is punishing the current players which is also unfair, but I do think it’s a neccessary move by Penn State that they are Cowarding out of. They in all honesty are doing what Notre Dame did with the scandles that rocked them last year in my opinion.
    A child should never have to go through something like this, and for this to happen and so many people knew of it is a shame.

  37. Dana says:

    Someone mentioned being a fan since 1963… in 1963 there was another heinous crime committed that had national attention in Nov., and the NU v. OU game was on the chopping block for “should-it-be-played-or-not”? The schools opted to play the game, if nothing else but a distraction. For years after the schools caught flak about having played that game when the country was in mourning.

    As with then, I say now – play the game. What comes from the courts and judges and juries will come, the young players want to play, fans have been waiting for the game, so play the game.

  38. Nate says:

    No one is blaming Joe Paterno for the actions of another man. If your son was being molested/raped, and a person knew that this occurred, but didnt contact the police, you wouldnt hold this person to some degree accountable? You think that it is ok for someone with knowledge of a crime to just stand by and let it be? In Nebraska, a person with knowledge of sexual or physical abuse that doesnt contact police can be held liable, so I would imagine Penn has a similar law.

    1. Nate says:

      I see it. Whats your point? I never mentioned that McQueary is any less culpable that JoePa.

  39. Nate says:

    Its his personal opinion, clearly shared by many on this BLOG. If you dont like what he writes, don’t read it. Pretty simple.

    1. Nate says:

      That was a wondeful comment, thanks for that. I just dont understand how you sit there and complain about is blog, complain he shouldnt be working at the OWH, yet continue to read his articles and comment on them.

  40. Husker_Mort says:

    Take your homophobic attacks somewhere else. This has nothing to do with your personal agenda of discrimination.

    1. Me says:

      This is an internet message board owned by a private company. The first amendment does not apply here. So, no, you are not allowed to say “whatever [you] choose.”

    2. Husker_Mort says:

      Travis, shouldn’t you be delivering a sermon at Westboro Baptist Church?

  41. Nate says:

    I can tell you with 100% certainty that if I had knowledge of a similar situation, I would notify the police. On the subject of homosexuality, WOW. That is all that can be said. This isnt an issue of homosexuality, it is an issue of a sick pedophile taking advantage of the youth he was supposed to be helping.

    1. Husker_Mort says:

      +1 Me

    2. Husker_Mort says:

      Read Leviticus sometime, Travis, and let me know if you agree with everything else in that chapter as adamantly as you do the single phrase that you use to obfuscate your hatred for others. That you mischaracterize me and my political beliefs is not even the most ridiculous part of this — that you bring them up at all on a Husker football blog is. Hate somewhere else.

      1. Travis says:

        Husker_Mart, nice try, I give you credit for sticking with the liberal talking points, i.e., any attacks on homosexuality will be met with the OT book of Leviticus. Well, since I’m a Christian, I do believe in Leviticus and every other book in the Bible, which by the way I consider to be the infallible Word of God. But, to get technical, the OT was God’s Word for his people the Israelites. The NT was the New Covenant meant to bring the Gentiles (like me) into the Christian family. If you’ve read the the entire Bible, you’ll notice that Homosexuality is described as sinful behavior in both the OT and NT.

        I have not hate for a person, which is why I didn’t attack any person, I attacked the behavior of Homosexuality. God will judge the person, but in order to get through life, all of us have to judge behavior on a daily basis, it’s what keeps us from breaking laws, like stealing, murdering, or sexually abusing children.

        This entire story is political, whether you like it not. The “politicall correct” crowd is trying to steer the story away from the abhorrent behavior and instead make it a story about Mr. Paterno and whether or not he did the politically correct thing.

        As for the game, I find it ridiculous that we as NU fans would call for our opponent to forfeit a game. It makes us look like scared punks. Like I stated previously, skipping a football game won’t heal the kids who were raped by a Homosexual Pedophile.

  42. Larry Sawatzki says:

    Keep it simple. Huskers should refuse to play the game.

  43. WyoHusker says:

    We are Penn State, isn’t entirely accurate. Apparently it is more like Paterno is Penn State. I don’t really believe that he has any “superiors” at that university. For him to come out and act magnanimous by saying he will retire at the end of the year on his own terms ( which he would have likely done anyway since he has his cherished record wins) is pathetic.
    I guess if we see him coaching this weekend, we will know who is Penn State. Sad that he and the other administrators are so upset over this – now that it has been made public. The investigation has been going on for years, and the suspect was still walking around the facilities?

  44. Jason says:

    Frankly – instead of forfeiting, how about letting the kids play to an empty stadium? No celebration afterwards. nobody outside (good luck with crowd control). Let them play the game – then leave.

  45. Jason says:

    A sin of omission is still a sin. AND if Joe doesn’t report what he heard (and I think you’re smart enough to believe McQueary told him EXACTLY what he saw), then he’s in violation of a law that mandates any witness to a child abuse act on a school campus must report it to LAW ENFORCEMENT.

    1. Johnny_Nebraska says:


      You are correct that a sin of omission is still a sin in that a lie of omission is still a lie. However, I am not under the impression that Joe was told everything. Though McQueary has testified that he did tell Joe everything, I would have liked to believed that if McQueary witnessed what he said he did, he would have gone to the police immediately and informed Joe later. Not think about it for a day, and then go tell Joe the following morning.

  46. Rich says:

    Punish the coaches who knww and the school administration but don’t punish the players by taking away their final home game of the season and/or career. This scandal has nothing to do with the players. Let them play.

  47. Drumfly says:

    Just curious, as a 1985 Indiana grad, what would Bobby Knight have done. I’ve got a feeling he would have had to have been restrained from killing his assistant.

  48. Davenport Husker Bill says:

    Nope: Game should go on. Joe should be celebrated somewhere other than this game (perhaps a dinner with his peers). He can come to the game, but no way should he coach it considering the circumstances and the seriousness of these charges. (if he survives until Saturday, considering all the stress this is causing for he and his family). Husker fans have been looking forward to this game for some time now. Let the game go on, Huskers win 28-21. Taylor will have a great game and Rex will have 3 running td’s.

  49. Rich says:

    ‘biggest college football scandal of our lifetimes’
    How is this a football scandal. this has nothing to do with college football? Yes it took place in a locker room, it involved a retired member of the university, he was no longer on the staff when the locker room incident took place, did not involve any players. Should some coaches be reprimanded, yes, could some of the coaches have done more, yes and they should have. But this isn’t a ‘football scandal’. This should be considered a state, local or state university scandal but not a college football scandal. Local law officials knew about this as well, the local DA at the time chose not to file charges. He is now missing and has been for seveal years??

    1. bob says:

      you haven’t read the grand jury’s report. Anyone who feels like commenting about the situation needs to read the report, in all its disgusting entirety. You have a 28 year old FOOTBALL Grad Assistant (who is now the recuriting coordinator and a coach) who SAW a 10 year old being raped by a 58 year old and did NOTHING for 24 hours. Then he told the head FOOTBALL coach, who did nothing for another 24 hours untiil he reported to his AD. They were told that the message was “we told Sandusky to go rape 10 year olds elsewhere” and that’s the end of it. They should empty the stadium, ban Paterno and McQueary from cocahing in the game and play to an empty house.

      Can you imagine what happens when the talking starts between fans? Can you imagine the potential for escalation here? I’ve heard from a number of NU fans and boosters that PSU a decade ago was BY FAR the worst visiting stadium and fan base they’d ever experienced, and they would never go back. Now multiply that by 1000 given the charged and overprotective atmosphere this causes. It’s crazy to put 110,000 fans into this tinder box now. But no-one could accuse PSU of being especialy prudent in their decision making.

  50. HUSKERHTTR says:

    Funny thing is yeah all the nebraska fans want them to forfit so that way they dont lode 2 in a row. Nebraska sucks. Oh wait i almost forgot next week they play Michigan so that would make it 3 in a row that they lost.

    1. BV says:

      Awesome. Way to pick up on what everyone is REALLY talking about here. This really has very little to do with football.

  51. Johnny_Nebraska says:

    Well bristle not. I am simply stating facts as I see them. Notice that none of these kids ever came forward to Joe with this until now? Until the very report that he forwarded was investigated?

    It is not that I think nothing happened. It is not that I think they “deserve it.” It is just that I cannot help but wonder, “Joe reported this incident. McQueary reported this incident to Joe, yet no students or prior victims have come forth prior or since unless asked.

    This investigation is happening why? Becase a report was made. Why? Because Joe Reported it. People seem to lose sight of the fact that if Joe had not acted. None of this may have been known.

  52. Husker_Mort says:

    +1 HuskerMark

  53. Matt in Omaha says:

    Game should go on, but all PSU supporters should wear Black and/or demand that all PSU profits from game go to a victims non-profit organization…IMO.

    1. BV says:

      This might be a good compromise. Could we also maybe do something to help the victims as well?

  54. Jerry says:

    Joe blew it, hugh. This isn’t like selling Jersy’s or free tatoos. Joe should leave the game immediately. Staying at PSU as head coach only means he values extending the winningest streak in NCAA History over his objections to child rape. Personaly I find that incredulous loathsome and even sickening.

  55. Matt says:

    Best article you have ever written dirk. I agree. I dont want to agree because i really want to see this game, but its something that needs to happen.

  56. BV says:

    I would have disagreed with this until I saw the “pep rally” on ESPN last night. In my opinion there are still are a lot of people who just don’t get it.

    However I definitely see the point that it’s not the player’s fault and they would be punished by this. Really a tough call.

    1. Husker_Mort says:

      Sickening, huskerexport. I was also there in 2003 and agree with your summation. Thanks for posting.

    2. BV says:

      Yes, as awful as their fans seem to behave on a regular basis it makes me a little worried about how they’ll act with all this going on.

  57. Johnny_Nebraska says:


    Understandable, but as adults we have to identify the guilty party or parties and take appropriate action. One of the problems in this case is that the system was trusted but the system failed.

  58. Husker Tom says:

    Here’s what’s gonna happen: Trustees will out PSU President Spanier tonight. Trustees will name interim leader, possibily Tom Ridge. Ridge will then dismiss or retire Paterno. The scope of this mess merits cancellation of the remainder of the season. It’s about the only thing Penn State could do to show it really understands the gravity of the situation. Do they really want to go through this for Nebraska and then go to Columbus and Madison and have it all hanging all over them? What if they earned a spot in the Big Ten title game? And then go to a bowl game? Preposterous. There are so many people involved in this cover up it boggles the mind. Shut it down, clean it up and start over.

  59. Husker_Mort says:

    +1 Greg

  60. Scott Winter says:

    Dirk: Your column, along with Bill Reiter’s, will take up the first hour of JOUR326 Sports Reporting class tonight at UNL. Thanks for the thoughtful column.

  61. Husker gal says:

    You clearly have not read the grand jury report. Your facts are so out of whack. Joe did NOT report it to anyone other than his so called boss….. The report to the police was made by one of the victim’s high school, after the victim told them. Sandusky was already retired before the rape was seen by McQuery in the shower. He was allowed full access to weight facilites, showers, locker rooms, and still had an office there even after they all knew about this. You are the one who needs to wake up. I hope you never have to step in and save a child from harm!!!!!

    1. Johnny_Nebraska says:

      What did Joe report?

  62. Nick says:

    Forfeiting one game is not going to change what has already happened. Fire Paterno if anything, but why punish all the Nebraska and Penn State players and fans that didn’t have anything to do with what happened??? It makes no sense at all.

  63. Tyler says:

    I don’t know that it’s fair to punish the players by forfeiting the game. While I for one don’t know how anybody could attend the game Saturday and actually enjoy themselves, I don’t think that forfeiting is the answer. But you are right, Paterno should be done NOW, not at seasons end.

  64. Bigred1 says:

    First USC didn’t accept their bowl bann they appealed it and lost. This situation is much different. First did you even read the report Dirk? Patorno did the right thing he reported the incident to his superiors and one being head of campus police. Second why didn’t the grad assistant that witnessed one of the acts report it to the police. Finally do you suggest after they forfit this game that they burn down the rest of the school and start over? This incident is very sickening and inexcusable but why isn’t anyone from the second chance chairity being held accountable since inappropriate behavior from Sandusky was reported back in 1998? One person who would be more guilt than Jo Pa is Matt Millon who is a chairman of the second chance charity and did nothing as well.

  65. Kiwi says:

    Ditto to that, Husker Mark. And Johnny Nebraska, you’ve stated twice that this whole matter is only being discussed because Paterno reported it. You’re either wrong, or an apologist of the worst kind. The grand jury was convened because one of the victims reported assaults to his high school and mother – who both promptly contacted authorities. In 2009, seven years after people at PSU chose not to do the same thing. So either you’re wrong in giving JoePa credit, or you’re saying that if he’d kept his mouth shut after McCreary told him what he’d seen, nobody would be calling for his head right now.

  66. Rick Foster says:

    Thanks for the kind words. Best of luck to Nebraska and its wonderful fans like you.

  67. Greg Bright says:

    Thanks OWH for getting rid of the more horrendous homophobic comments! Also, great article Dirk, without a doubt, you are the best sportswriter the state of Nebraska has to offer.

  68. 4NU says:

    Unfortunately canceling/forfeiting this game would probably not fly with the Big 10 unless PSU vacated all of their wins as well. I’m not saying this because I think football is more important than what has occurred, far from it, Giving NU or any other team a win in this situation affects a number of other teams in the conference and could have major financial implications for teams who don’t get the benefit of a forfeit win. I know it’s what many people hate to hear at a time like this and there probably is merit to passing on this game but unless you had agreement from the rest of the conference I’m not sure you could do it. Maybe vacating their season would be a better way to go but we all know that would never happen and the game will go on as scheduled on Saturday.

    All I can hope for, which I’m fairly sure won’t happen either, is that Paterno and the rest of the coaches and administrators involved are not present on Saturday. If Joe is on the sideline Saturday and it’s his last home game as coach of PSU I’d be willing to bet that at minimum the students give him a heroes sendoff. You think your disgusted now……

  69. The Big Red One says:

    TO all who are to stupid, narrow minded, selfish or just plain old ethically dis-oriented to understand why this weekend’s game should be cancelled and Penn States season should end here & now…I said this last week on another blog in reply to NU “Glory” but it seems tragically more appropriate here…

    “When the day comes that these players start sharing in the profits, the University, the Coaching Staff & the NCAA bilk & divey up out of of this “system” every year. Then come talk to us about Glory….NU is a State owned University and yet every year they show a profit & loss column just any other business. The “profits” going to salary hikes for Harvey Pearlman, the NCAA and everyone in between. Including your precious Tom Osborne… Oh yeah..Lets not forget the $1000 Sky Boxes they built on a few seasons ago. Who do you think THOSE are for? All funded on Ticket sales, private “contributions” and State & Federal money..All privledged under a Tax Exempt status..

    Until the NCAA and the University become truly non-profit. Until Coaches are payed the same salary as any other University level Teacher. Until Universities start paying taxes on the “profits” they spend on themselves.. It’s just another Cartel exploiting a naive, less privledged “indentured” population..

    Wake up and smell the money Memorial Stadium…”

    Wake up and smell the money Football Fans..

    Anyone and I mean anyone that can possibly advovate NOT shutting down PSU’s AD until the true facts come out, is no better than the sick A-Holes that allowed this to happen …And that includes “Joe Pa”….

    NCAA where are you??????

    The NCAA not Penn State or Nebraska should step in here. “Joe Pat” and everyone on his staff included should be under indictment for collusion, obstruction and aiding & abetting in a felony. It is obvious that these people, people entrusted with the safety & well being of children knew what was going and said nothing.

    Dirk, I couldn’t agree more…And if the NCAA doesn’t do it’s job, it should be under Federal Investigation as well…

    Btw…You can bet dollars to dime that this entire mess goes a lot higher than just the morally bankrupt people at Penn State’s Athletic Dept. The AD, the Chancellor, NCAA officials, all of them had to have at least some knowledge of what Sandusky was up to, and they chose football over the safety of the children they are entrusted with…

    And please…don’t anyone give me that line of BS that university level 18 -20 year olds are not kids…

  70. Kiwi says:

    Sorry, this no longer makes much sense and was in response to one of Johnny_Nebraska’s more asinine comments.

  71. From the GA to JoPa to the PSU president, those who want to conduct “business as usual” Saturday, to allow this predator to roam the campus as late as last week and turn your heads YOU ARE THE COWARDLY LIONS!!!

  72. Big Ten Fan says:

    To all of the “DOUBTERS” that this tragic event just surfaced within the last few days, go to the Beaver County Times (Pennsylvania newspaper) and read the article written by Mark Madden, dated April 4, 2011 titled: SANDUSKY: A STATE SECRET. Seems he was “right on” with the allegations that surfaced in 1998, about Sandusky’s conduct with an underage male. “NO CHARGES” were filed. This goes way beyond Penn State Administrative Officials. Maybe the local authorities and politicians know more than what has recently been revealed. This is becoming very interesting.