PENN STATE, CANCEL THE SEASON. Why? As I sat watching my favorite early morning news this morning I was appauled that any one should suggest that Penn State should cancel their football season do to the scandal that has erupted around the actions of a few individuals. Is this America? Do we punish the parents of a child gone bad? The 100 or so players that had nothing to do with the actions of the coaches and administration simply want to play football. The football program did not cause this. College campuses are a bastion for tolerance of strange and sometimes dangerous lifestyles. The line has to be drawn by the administration and they are responsible for this, not the football team. From education to politics, I believe we are all tired of those who should be responsible trying to direct the anger toward a scapegoat in order to cover their own stupidity. This same injustice also occurs in the NCAA. Reggie Bush and Pete Carrol are both happily now earning millions of dollars in the National Football League while the current players at USC pay the consequences for their actions. For those of you who don't know, the current system prevents USC from attending a bowl or playing for the National Championship due to recruiting violations between Reggie Bush and NFL scouts. This indeed punishes the university, but also a lot of innocent individuals. You can't take the thrill of winning the National Championship away from the heart of those who played even if the trophy is reclaimed. These kids playing now are prohibited from that experience. A more just system would be to let them play, but divide all of the revenues between their competitors in the conference. I also want to state my admiration for the team even though I am an avid Cornhusker. These young men performed admirably on the field in spite of the adversity. Many of these players were seniors and their leadership was exemplary. Most participated in the pregame prayer. Tell me the justification in punishing them.
No where in the country does the college football team have more importance to the community than the University of Nebraska. The football team and the money it brings in has contributed greatly to the development of the university and basically supports all of the other athletic activities. This has created a championship quality Women's Volleyball Team and many other athletic programs that would otherwise be underfunded and 2nd rate.
I've never been to Happy Valley, but Lincoln, Nebraska has benefitted greatly from the Cornhuskers. On game day, the stadium becomes the 3rd largest population in the state. People travel from rural communities all over the state to attend a home game. Many travel from several hundred miles and make it a weekend getaway in the fall. Small businesses all over Lincoln thrive on game day as well as the many gas stations and restaurants along the interstate and rural highways. Clothing and memorabilia are a huge industry and create many jobs. Nebraska has an interesting dress code. You can almost wear anything anywhere as long as it is red.
So then, when I hear the pundits on the news advocating for Penn State to cancel their football season I realize that they are ignorrant of the contribution that College Football actually makes to our society in general. I'm not sure who is so sensitive in America. Bad things happen. This may be one of the worst examples of conduct that we have ever seen, but tell me how punishing the innocents makes the situation better.