January 16, 2015
The Penn State-NCAA agreement to repeal a 2012 consent decree in the Jerry Sandusky child abuse scandal, replacing it with a new agreement that restores 112 wins to the football program, makes the late Joe Paterno the winningest coach in major college football and clears the way for $60 million in penalties to be spent on child abuse prevention and treatment.
Below are some reactions to the decision.
"The repeal of the consent decree and the return of the wins to the university and Joe Paterno confirm that the NCAA and the board of trustees acted prematurely and irresponsibly in the unprecedented sanctions the NCAA imposed on the university, the players, coaches and the community.
"This case should always have been about the pursuit of the truth, not the unjust vilification of the culture of a great institution and the scapegoating of coaches, players and administrators who were never given a chance to defend themselves.
"For nearly three years, everyone associated with Penn State has had to bear the mark of shame placed upon the institution by the NCAA. It was a grievously wrong action, precipitated by panic, rather than a thoughtful and careful examination of the facts."
— Statement issued on behalf of Paterno family.
"Continuing this litigation would further delay the distribution of funds to child sexual abuse survivors for years, undermining the very intent of the fine. While others will focus on the return of wins, our top priority is on protecting, educating and nurturing young people."
— Harris Pastides, University of South Carolina president and member of NCAA board.
"We acted in good faith in addressing the failures and subsequent improvements on Penn State's campus. We must acknowledge the continued progress of the university while also maintaining our commitment to supporting the survivors of child sexual abuse."
— Kirk Schulz, Kansas State University president and member of NCAA board.
"The NCAA has surrendered. The agreement we reached represents a complete victory for the issue at hand. ... I'm not here to exonerate anyone, but to say, 'due process matters.'"
— Pennsylvania state Sen. Jake Corman, whose lawsuit challenged the validity of the Penn State-NCAA consent decree.
"To completely restore, in a sense, Joe Paterno's heretofore pristine reputation, I regret that. He did a world of good, but he made a huge, huge error in judgment in helping cover up Sandusky's pedophilia, and even posthumously I think that has to be recognized."
— Michael Boni, lawyer for one of the victims who testified at Sandusky's trial.
"I think it's the good ol' boys giving special treatment and deference to the good ol' boys. I am always sad but never shocked when I see it happen. ... It feels like nothing really changed at Penn State."
— Jeff Anderson, the St. Paul, Minnesota, lawyer who filed the first civil case against Penn State on behalf of a Sandusky accuser.
"I think it's a step in the right direction for that (vindicating Paterno.) Is it complete vindication for that? No, but a step in the right direction."
— former Penn State running back Mike Guman.