Franco Harris addresses Penn State alumni, fans on Sandusky scandal
STATE COLLEGE — A day before they celebrated this year's end of Penn State spring football practice, more than 200 alumni and fans gathered Friday for an event hosted by Hall of Fame running back Franco Harris about the Jerry Sandusky child sex abuse scandal.
They remain angry about the circumstances surrounding the firing of the late coach Joe Paterno after Sandusky's arrest in November 2011.
Presenters during the three-hour gathering claimed Penn State's firing of Paterno and acceptance of NCAA sanctions were done too hastily and without enough information.
“Not everything is as it appears,” Harris said, “and that's why we're here.”
They cited what they called discrepancies on several topics, notably between court testimony of Sandusky's trial and a lack of evidence in former FBI investigator Louis Freeh's report for the school that accused Paterno of covering up child abuse.
Penn State trustees in January 2012 said they decided to oust Paterno in part because the football coach didn't meet a moral obligation to do more to alert authorities about allegations against Sandusky, the retired defensive coordinator.
School leadership has also stood by the Freeh report for its recommendations to improve governance and security measures. Trustees have not formally discussed the conclusions in the report, nor have they met to vote on it.
Critics also took issue with media coverage, alleging journalists created a salacious narrative that inappropriately highlighted Paterno's role.
Sandusky is serving a 30- to 60-year prison sentence after being convicted of 45 counts of child sexual abuse last year. He maintains his innocence and is pursuing appeals.
Paterno died in January 2012 at age 85. Event organizers wore T-shirts and stickers honoring Paterno as they handed out photos and diagrams that they said alleged discrepancies in courtroom testimony.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- White House Christmas tree sent from Pennsylvania
- Chief justice revokes Feudale’s senior judge status
- Western Pa. dairies get creative to ensure eggnog supply
- Settlements in Sandusky scandal up to nearly $93 million for Penn State
- Western Pa. community colleges struggle for relevancy as enrollment falls
- Amish man runs Harrisburg marathon in his traditional clothing