Favorite Teams: Yankees, Reds, Jets, Knicks, Blue Jackets
Favorite Bourbons: Eagle Rare and Woodford
Favorite Books: "The Power Broker" and "The Worst Team Money Could Buy"
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Today is the day we’re all going to learn the fate of not only Penn State’s football program, but the possible ramifications of their administrations actions on the entire university. It will be the end of the months of sheer horror for sports fans, as we’ve had to listen and dissect numerous reports and findings related to Jerry Sandusky and his colleague’s cover ups.
While it’s the end of the fallout, it’s the beginning of the period of rebuilding for the university and of State College, the quiet town where football isn’t just everything – it’s the only thing.
Yet here we are – those of us who aren’t in State College or alums of Penn State are left wondering: is this it?
This is justice?
It’s about time we face facts: there’s no such thing as true justice.
It doesn’t exist.
There’s no way to properly ascertain if this is closure, at least for those outside the “Penn State Family”. This may be as close to closure as we get. We weren’t even directly affected, and yet we’re left demanding more.
It’s pretty obvious that Penn State will not receive the so-called “Death Penalty”, where they’ll have to suspend football operations for two seasons. However the penalties will be swift and they will be painful. But now we sit, take in the final NCAA sanctions for the university, and it leaves us feeling hollow.
Most of us were told growing up why we should love and respect Joe Paterno, that he “plays the game the right way” and he was a clean figure. We were led to believe that he was a beacon of light in the otherwise shadowy world of collegiate athletics. He called people “Sir” and “Ma’am”, was polite to reporters and told incoming athletes that academics came first. Even as he grew old, and it was evident that he was just a figurehead who was passed by the game he loved so much, we seemingly believed he would be there forever – not because he was a great coach, but he was a great man.
Now that façade is gone, toppled faster than the statue that bared his resemblance outside of a stadium he helped build. At that is left is a broken memory, and what we used to believe seems so naïve and, worst of all, wrong.
We were wronged. We feel wronged. We were all duped, and there’s nothing that can change that feeling. In such a skeptical world, it’s just another example of an old saying: if it seems too good to be true, it probably is.
All of us want justice, even though we can’t agree what exactly “justice” would be in this case. There are many of us that will never trust the university again, and either can’t or will never understand the type of atmosphere where a program was more important than the lives of children. I, for one, wish Sandusky had two lives to give. However all we can do now is hope the victims find some sort of peace, and move on with their lives the best way possible.
My advice for everyone like myself, who find themselves wishing and hoping for more to come down on the despicable “human beings” that willingly took part in this tragedy, is to do one of two things: either move on with your life, or prepare for an empty feeling in your stomach.
It’s a feeling that will never, ever go away. In a situation like this, there are no winners, only those who didn’t lose as much.