Former Players React To Penn State Scandal
BOSTON (CBS) – Ripples from the growing scandal at Penn State have reached the Boston area, as former players and coaches have given their take on the situation.
Former defensive coordinator Jerry Sandusky is accused of sexually assaulting several children over a number of years while on Penn State’s campus.
On Wednesday, legendary coach Joe Paterno and university president Graham Spanier were fired by the board of trustees.
WBZ-TV’s Karen Anderson reports
Boston College Head Coach Frank Spaziani was recruited by Paterno and played for him, and began his coaching career as Paterno’s graduate assistant. He said the story is about the victims, not Paterno’s retirement.
“It’s a terrible terrible tragedy. My thoughts and prayers are with the victims and their families,” Spaziani said before practice on Wednesday.
Former Patriots player Scott Zolak, meanwhile, voiced his outrage on his show on 98.5 The Sports Hub on Wednesday. Zolak was recruited by Sandusky when he was in high school. He said Sandusky came to his house several times.
“This is shocking. It’s disturbing. It’s disgusting,” said Zolak.
Zolak believed that Paterno should be out of a job. But, some former players are standing behind Paterno, asking that people wait until the investigation is complete.
Wednesday, an artist painted over Sandusky’s picture on a mural on the bookstore on campus.
On the chair where Sandusky was sitting before is a blue ribbon which symbolizes the fight against child abuse.
Daniel Skrip, who played at Penn State from 1988-1992, said “It’s sad.” He said Paterno reported the allegations to school officials the day after he learned of them, and is being unfairly blamed.
Skrip saw Sandusky every day at practice, and even helped out with his charity.
“He was a patriarch of that Second Mile program, a stand up coach, and a good guy… I never had one iota of concern about him, his morals and his character, not one ounce. So when all this came down over the last few days, I was as shocked as anyone to learn it,” said Skrip.
Massachusetts State Rep. Kevin Kuros (R-Uxbridge) is a Penn State graduate and wants to make sure the problem never happens in the Bay State. He plans to file legislation that would clarify Massachusetts laws on mandatory reporting. In Pennsylvania, Paterno was not legally obligated to report the crime.
The Pennsylvania Coalition Against Rape has offered their resources to the Penn State Board Of Trustees.
“We are urging the board to take advantage of our child abuse experts and the great resources regarding child sexual abuse that exist right in their backyard,” PCAR Chief Executive Officer Delilah Rumburg said.
“The Penn State case has garnered a lot of attention because of the status of the individuals and university involved,” Rumburg said. “But we must not forget that there are thousands of children in Pennsylvania and nationally each year that are the victims of child sexual abuse. That’s not acceptable.”