College Football

State of Pennsylvania Suing NCAA over Penn State Sanctions

STATE COLLEGE, PA - NOVEMBER 11: Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett speaks with Penn State student leaders behind him during a press conference at the Nittany Lion Inn, November 11, 2011 in State College, Pennsylvania. Corbett has said he supports the Penn State Board of Trustees decision to fire former football head coach Joe Paterno. (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)
Patrick Smith/Getty Images
Richard LangfordCorrespondent IJanuary 1, 2013

Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett apparently does not agree with the sanctions the NCAA levied upon Penn State in the wake of the Jerry Sandusky scandal. The Republican governor has made his intentions to sue the collegiate body known. 

Sports Illustrated's Pete Thamel helped shepherd this news to the public:

Here's official word from governor. RT @ap: Pa. gov says he'll sue NCAA over hefty Penn State sanctions after Sandusky child abuse scandal.

— Pete Thamel(@SIPeteThamel) January 1, 2013

 

UPDATE: Wednesday, Jan. 2, 11:30 a.m. ET by Donald Wood

After Penn State University accepted the sanctions levied against them in the Jerry Sandusky case, Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett officially announced a lawsuit against the NCAA, according to Dan Wetzel of Yahoo! Sports:

PA Gov. Corbett announces lawsuit v NCAA, claiming "NCAA has no authority and operated outside their bylaws" in sanctioning Penn State

— Dan Wetzel (@DanWetzel) January 2, 2013

Ben Jones of StateCollege.com is reporting more on what Corbett said at his press conference announcing the state of Pennsylvania’s intentions and purpose of this lawsuit:

Corbett is asking the court for all sanctions to be thrown out and that the consent decree be declared illegal.

— Ben Jones (@Ben_Jones88) January 2, 2013

"This was a criminal matter, not a violation of NCAA rules." - Corbett

— Ben Jones (@Ben_Jones88) January 2, 2013

"Penn State had no choice but to take the sanctions given the ultimatum the NCAA have them." - Corbett

— Ben Jones (@Ben_Jones88) January 2, 2013

State is saying as a trade association and did not obey those by laws. Went outside the rules of such organizations.

— Ben Jones (@Ben_Jones88) January 2, 2013

After so much damage was done by this horrible ordeal, the fact that these wounds will be torn open again and taken through the court system is not what Penn State or college football fans in general want.

This is setting the stage for a long legal battle that will ultimately have no winners.

---End of Update---

 

NBC added that the governor has a Wednesday news conference scheduled at State College to announce the filing of the suit. 

To people that have fallen out of the loop of this story, this news has to be surprising. For starters, the depraved, sickening and completely reprehensible situation for which the sanctions were levied is not something that any politician would attempt to dismiss. 

Secondly, the school itself agreed to the sanctions. 

However, like most situations that involve any kind of legal documents, there are aspects of this deal that are up for debate, and the cause for this suit is likely intertwined with those reasons. 

NBC noted that among the imposed penalties, Penn State must pay $60 million for the intended use of financing child-abuse grants. This was to be used nationally. As NBC also reported, this has come under fire of state and federal lawmakers for not being limited to Pennsylvania.  

Obviously, this is a huge chunk of change that would be leaving the state, and that is always going to grab the attention of a state's powers that be—as it should.

However, at this point in this tale, I can't help but think that the State of Pennsylvania would be better served by continuing to distance itself from this terrible story rather than bringing it back to the forefront once again. 

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