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NCAA: Penn State fined $60M; wins vacated from 1998-2011
By throwing out all Penn State victories from 1998 to 2011, the NCAA stripped Paterno of the top spot in the record book. The governing body went all the way back to 1998 because, according to the investigative report, that is the year Paterno and other Penn State officials first learned of an allegation against Sandusky.
“I didn’t want it to happen like this,” Bowden said. “Wish I could have earned it, but that’s the way it is.”
The postseason ban is the longest handed out by the NCAA since it gave a four-year punishment to Indiana football in 1960.
Penn State players left a team meeting on campus in State College without talking to reporters. Penn State’s season starts Sept. 1 at home against Ohio University.
“Our heritage, our legacy has been tainted and damaged,” said Troy Cromwell, a wide receiver on the 1986 team that won the second of Paterno’s two national championships. Cromwell said he felt bad for current and incoming players, “but at the end of the day, there were still those kids, those poor kids, and those victims, and we have to think about them first in everything that we do.”
Southern California, Ohio State and Alabama have all run afoul of the NCAA. Even Notre Dame went on probation for two years after a booster lavished gifts on players in the 1990s. The harshest penalty handed down to a football program came in the 1980s, when the NCAA shut down Southern Methodist University’s team for a year. SMU football has never gotten back to the level of success it had before getting the death penalty.
Jim Delany, commissioner of the Big Ten conference, said he believes Penn State is capable of bouncing back. “I do have a strong sense that many of the ingredients of success are still at Penn State and will be there in future years,” he said.
Craig Depkin II, a professor of economics at the University of North Carolina, Charlotte, noted the NCAA penalties won’t prevent Penn State — a school with a $4.3 billion annual budget — from spending the same amount on its football program in future years, or even more.
“There’s anecdotal evidence that you do see increases in funding after a ban,” Depkin said of other teams that have been sanctioned. “The idea [is] that you would spend more during times of crisis” to let players and fans know that the program isn’t going away.
• Russo reported from New York. Associated Press writers Mark Scolforo in State College, Kevin Begos in Pittsburgh, Tom Coyne in Indianapolis and Brent Kallestad in Tallahassee, Fla., contributed to this story, along with AP videographer Dan Huff in State College.
Taxpayers must pay the freight for over-budget train projects
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