The following op-ed written by President Rodney A. Erickson appeared in the Opinions section of The Washington Post on July 27, 2012.
The Way Forward For Penn State
Since the news about Jerry Sandusky broke last fall, the most challenging chapter in Penn State’s history has unfolded in the glare of the national spotlight. Those of us in leadership roles at Penn State have faced questions for which there is no playbook. I have spent many nights — and many more with our leadership team — considering the actions we must take to ensure that this university endures as an institution of which we can all be proud and one that learns from the past to be a brighter light for the future.
I knew when I accepted the position of president in November — and the Board of Trustees strongly agreed — that, for Penn State to move forward, we would need to uncover and expose the full scope of the university’s knowledge of Sandusky’s actions. We could not wait for courts to bring evidence to light. So, knowing that we would need to accept accountability for whatever was discovered, the board asked former FBI director Louis Freeh to lead an independent investigation.
The full article can be found here: http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/the-way-forward-for-penn-state/2012/07/27/gJQABmenEX_story.html
STATE COLLEGE, Pa., July 27, 2012 – President Rodney Erickson spoke at length with CBS Face the Nation host Bob Schieffer today, discussing the upcoming 2012-2013 academic year as well as his enthusiasm and determination to instill a proud Penn State culture that is equally based on academics and athletics.
The interview is scheduled to air on Face the Nation (CBS) on Sunday, July 29 at 10:30 a.m. ET/9:30 a.m. CT.
The Penn State Board of Trustees met for a discussion tonight. A vote was not required and none was taken. The Board finds the punitive sanctions difficult and the process with the NCAA unfortunate. But as we understand it, the alternatives were worse as confirmed by NCAA President Mark Emmert’s recent statement that Penn State was likely facing a multi-year death sentence. The University and Board resolve to move forward together to recognize the historical excellence in Penn State’s academic and athletic programs. We anticipate and look forward to demonstrating our outstanding performance in complying with the sanctions. We continue to recognize the important role that intercollegiate athletics provides for our student athletes and the wider University community as we strive to appropriately balance academic and athletic accomplishments. Penn State will remain a world-class educational institution of which our students, faculty, staff and alumni can be justifiably proud. The commitment demonstrated by our student athletes in recent days embodies all that is good about Penn State and we look forward to unprecedented support by the Nittany nation when we take the field this fall.
During the last 72 hours there have been a number of interviews and statements from the University regarding the NCAA sanctions and the consent decree. Below are links to a few:
No regrets for Bill O’Brien
Penn State football coach Bill O’Brien talks to Rece Davis regard the NCAA sanctions
Video: Penn State responds to sanctions
Rodney Erickson, Dave Joyner and Karen Peetz speak with John Barr from ESPN regarding the NCAA sanctions
On July 23, President Rodney Erickson, Interim Athletic Director David Joyner and Board of Trustees Chairwoman Karen Peetz spoke with Centre Daily Times Executive Editor Chip Minemyer regarding the recent NCAA Consent Decree. For full video coverage of the nearly 30-minute video please go to the Centre Daily Times website at: http://www.centredaily.com/2012/07/23/3270612/video-cdt-interview-with-rodney.html.
The video interview includes responses to the NCAA sanctions, the Consent Decree, paying the $60 million fine, impact to football players, donor reaction, Paterno’s legacy, BOT resignations, among other topics.