|Penn State sexual abuse documentarian John Ziegler on D&C: ‘I don’t believe that Joe Paterno had any knowledge of the 1998 investigation’||03.26.13 at 1:21 pm ET|
Documentary writer and director John Ziegler checked in with Dennis & Callahan on Tuesday morning to discuss his recent three-plus-hour conversation with Jerry Sandusky at the Pennsylvania State Correctional Institute.
Ziegler made multiple visits to Sandusky and came to the conclusion that if it was not for a certain New York Jets losing streak from nearly 15 years ago, the Penn State scandal may have never come out.
Said Ziegler: “I’ve concluded, that after my three and a half hours with Jerry Sandusky, that if the New York Jets had not lost their last three games in the 2000 season, there would be no Penn State scandal … If Al Groh doesn’t decide at the last second — he was coaching the Jets at that time — that because they lost the last three games to miss the playoffs, Jerry Sandusky was about to sign on the dotted line to be the head football coach at Virginia in December of 2000. I’m totally convinced that there’s corroborating evidence for that, but Jerry and I talked about this extensively. Apparently during his last interview, the interviewer gets called out of the room, Al Groh calls, that’s his alma mater, Virginia, he’s on the search committee for that job, and tells them, ‘Hey look, I think I’m out of the Jets, I want the job.’ All of a sudden the guy comes back, is cold to Sandusky and Sandusky’s wondering what the heck’s going on. The next day Al Groh gets the job; five weeks later is the [Mike] McQueary episode.”
Ziegler, whose documentary “Framing Paterno” was recently released, also discussed what he thought Paterno really knew and, more importantly, didn’t know regarding the investigations into Sandusky’s actions in the late 1990s.
“People are misunderstanding what the most important conversation in this entire situation was,” Ziegler said, adding: “The key conversation was actually when the athletic director went to Sandusky and said, ‘OK, what was this all about? We have this report that you did something inappropriate with a kid in the shower.’ That’s where the information that I’ve been able to [get] from this interview is critical, because I have the actual statement from the boy in the shower, made ironically on the day [Joe] Paterno was fired, as a 24-year-old married sergeant in the marine corps, proactively coming forward with his mother with him, to say, ‘Look, I’m the boy in the shower, McQueary is lying. Nothing happened.’ ”
|Tuesday’s Morning Mashup: Joe Paterno’s family continues push to clear his name||02.12.13 at 7:51 am ET|
TUESDAY’S BROADCAST HIGHLIGHTS:
NHL: Rangers at Bruins, 7:30 p.m. (NESN, NBCSN)
NBA: Trail Blazers at Heat, 7:30 p.m. (NBATV)
NBA: Rockets at Warriors, 10:30 p.m. (NBATV)
College basketball: Kentucky at Florida, 7 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: Seton Hall at Rutgers, 7 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: Virginia Tech at Virginia, 7 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Michigan at Michigan State, 9 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: Alabama at Georgia, 9 p.m. (ESPNU)
AROUND THE WEB:
♦ While the family of Joe Paterno continues its crusade to clear the Penn State legend of any wrongdoing in the Jerry Sandusky sexual abuse scandal, the school is closing in on settlements with most of the victims of the former assistant coach.
Attorney Ken Feinberg, who was hired by the school, told The Associated Press that he delivered settlement offers from 28 alleged victims (18 more than the number brought up in Sandusky’s trial) to school administrators, lawyers and members of the board of trustees during Friday meeting in Philadelphia.
“The next step is Penn State — we’ll see how Penn State responds in the next few weeks,” Feinberg said.
Meanwhile, on Monday a member of the board of trustees called on the board to re-examine the findings of Louis Freeh‘s investigation, saying a new report from a team hired by Paterno’s family raised “serious and troubling” questions about the Freeh report. The school declined comment on the request from board member Alvin Clemens.
Pateron’s wife, Sue, and others, including former Penn State player Greg Buttle appeared on Katie Couric‘s show on Monday and defended Paterno, who died last January.
“Joe Paterno didn’t conspire to do anything,” Buttle said. “The conspiracy to me was perpetrated by a cabal of trustees and others that felt they needed a convenient way out to relieve Penn State of what had happened.”
♦ Kobe Bryant, who last year was fined $100,000 for using a homophobic slur toward an official during a game, apparently has learned his lesson. When one of his 1.3 million Twitter followers tweeted “You’re gay” as an insult to another follower Sunday, Bryant stepped in.
Tweeted the Lakers star:
Just letting you know@PacSmoove @pookeo9 that using “your gay” as a way to put someone down ain’t ok! #notcool delete that out ur vocab.
Bryant acknowledged that last year’s incident was on his mind after another follower brought it up. Tweeted Bryant:
exactly! That wasn’t cool and was ignorant on my part. I own it and learn from it and expect the same from others.
♦ Inspired by the surprise resignation of Pope Benedict XVI, USA Today has a list of the top 10 athletes who tied to cling to their careers for too long.
No. 1 is Muhammad Ali, followed by Brett Favre. Former Red Sox players Rickey Henderson and Roger Clemens are third and fourth, respectively. They’re followed by Evander Holyfield, Michael Jordan, Jerry Rice, Patrick Ewing, Gordie Howe and Deion Sanders.
ON THIS DAY TRIVIA (answer below): On Feb. 12, 1981, which Bruin recorded his 200th career goal when he scored twice in a 3-3 tie vs. the Colorado Rockies?
|Thursday’s Morning Mashup: Newtown children to sing at Super Bowl||01.31.13 at 7:59 am ET|
THURSDAY’S BROADCAST HIGHLIGHTS:
NHL: Sabres at Bruins, 7 p.m. (NESN)
NHL: Penguins at Rangers, 7 p.m. (NHL Network)
NBA: Grizzlies at Thunder, 8 p.m. (TNT)
NBA: Mavericks at Warriors, 10:30 p.m. (TNT)
College basketball: UConn at Providence, 7 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: Illinois at Michigan State, 7 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: Drexel at George Mason, 7 p.m. (NBCSN)
College basketball: Penn State at Iowa, 8 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Arizona at Washington, 9 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: Arkansas at Alabama, 9 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: Oregon State at California, 10 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Gonzaga at Loyola Marymount, 11 p.m. (ESPN2)
AROUND THE WEB:
♦ Almost two months after 26 students and faculty at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., were gunned down, a group of 26 students from the school will sing “America the Beautiful” as part of Sunday’s Super Bowl pregame show. The performance will be broadcast live on CBS shortly before Alicia Keys sings the national anthem.
The News Times in Connecticut reports that an anonymous donor provided the money for the trip. “It’s an honor,” an unidentified local parent said.
Choir members from the school recorded “Somewhere Over the Rainbow” with Grammy-nominated singer Ingrid Michaelson earlier this month.
♦ The Lakers had won three straight games before losing to the Suns on Wednesday night, but coach Mike D’Antoni still found himself dealing with controversy. The latest issue surrounded center Pau Gasol, who was upset about being benched in the fourth quarter of Tuesday’s victory over the Hornets.
Said Gasol: “I’m a competitor, I’m a guy that thinks I bring a lot to the table, and not being on the floor is something that I don’t like, I don’t appreciate.”
Considering the players talked about a renewed focus on team success over individual issues earlier this week following a recent team meeting, D’Antoni was especially disappointed.
“Well, you know, ‘all for one’ didn’t last [very] long, did it?” D’Antoni said. “Forty-eight hour shelf life. That’s not bad. We’ll take what we can get.”
♦ Former Penn State football assistant coach Jerry Sandusky‘s bid for a new trial was denied Wednesday, as a judge rejected his argument that his lawyers did not have enough time to prepare for his trial last year that resulted in his conviction on child sexual abuse charges.
“I do not think it can be said that either of the defendant’s trial counsel failed to test the prosecution’s case in a meaningful manner,” Judge John Cleland wrote in his 27-page order. “The defendant’s attorneys subjected the commonwealth’s witnesses to meaningful and effective cross-examination, presented evidence for the defense and presented both a comprehensive opening statement and a clearly developed closing argument.”
Sandusky is serving 30-60 years in state prison for the sexual abuse of 10 boys.
ON THIS DAY TRIVIA (answer below): On Jan. 31, 1971, in a 6-0 rout of the Blues, Bobby Orr scored twice to become the second defenseman in Bruins history with 100 career goals. Who was the first?
|Former Penn State players ready to appeal bans||08.08.12 at 11:42 am ET|
Michael Robinson and other former Penn State athletes told the NCAA they will appeal sanctions handed down in the wake of Jerry Sandusky‘s scandal.
Robinson and the group of former Penn State players competed at points during the 14 years of vacated Penn State football records.
Even though the NCAA said sanctions cannot be appealed, the alumni group is sending their appeal on the grounds the decision was made from the Freeh Report as opposed to an NCAA investigation.
The letter sent to the NCAA calls the Freeh Report’s conclusions “not supported by the evidence” and said it makes the appellants appear as though they contributed to the culture for which Penn State is being penalized.
“The Appellants challenge the factual findings and conclusions of the consent decree and of the underlying investigative report by Sporkin & Sullivan (the “Freeh Report”), which – without notice , investigation or hearing as required – provided the predicate for the actions taken by the NCAA in this matter,” the letter read.
The alumni group appealing includes Anthony Adams, Gerald Cadogan, Shamar Finney, Josh Gaines, Richerd Gardners, Justin Kurpeikis, Anwar Phillips and former coach Bill Kenny.
|Yahoo’s Dan Wetzel on D&C: NCAA president Mark Emmert ‘Roger Goodell-like’||07.23.12 at 10:43 am ET|
Yahoo! Sports’ Dan Wetzel joined Dennis & Callahan on Monday morning to share his views on the NCAA’s penalties against Penn State. To hear the interview, go to the Dennis & Callahan audio on demand page.
Wetzel began by highlighting the significant departure NCAA president Mark Emmert’s decision represents from how the NCAA typically comes to decisions.
“The NCAA president is a title that sounds really good but generally has no power,” Wetzel said. “It is not like being Roger Goodell or Bud Selig or David Stern. So most of the way the NCAA operates is through this endless bureaucracy, committee meetings, board of directors, executive management councils, subcommittees, you name it, task forces. They just have meeting after meeting and nothing gets done.”
Wetzel explained that this time around, Emmert went to the board of directors and requested (and received) the power to punish Penn State on his own, “Roger Goodell-like.”
“That is a huge change of course for the NCAA,” Wetzel said, “and probably one that they should have that power, particularly in cases like this, where there is such a huge internal investigation like the Freeh report and we’re talking about crimes like this.”
Wetzel says the fact that Penn State won’t appeal Emmert’s decision suggests that Penn State president Rodney Erickson was consulted in the course of the NCAA’s decision-making process.
“I mean, why would you give that up? If that’s accurate, why would you say that if you don’t know what the penalty is,” Wetzel said. “So I’m guessing that he was consulted through this.”
|Tuesday’s Morning Mashup: Dez Bryant, Marshawn Lynch latest NFL players to be arrested||07.17.12 at 7:52 am ET|
TUESDAY’S BROADCAST HIGHLIGHTS:
MLB: White Sox at Red Sox, 7:10 p.m. (NESN; WEEI)
MLB: Giants at Braves, 7:10 p.m. (MLB Network)
AROUND THE WEB:
♦ Cowboys wide receiver Dez Bryant and Seahawks running back Marshawn Lynch are the latest NFL players to be arrested in what has been a busy offseason. There have been at least 25 arrests in the past six months.
Bryant was arrested Monday by police in DeSoto, Texas, after a domestic incident Saturday. According to an ESPN report, Bryant got into an argument with his half-brother and pushed his mother. Police paid a visit then but did not decide to make an arrest until Monday.
Bryant was charged with a Class A misdemeanor, which is punishable by a fine of up to $4,000 and a year in jail. Bryant also could be penalized by the NFL for violating the league’s personal conduct policy.
Bryant has had a couple of run-ins with law enforcement in the last year, but this is his first arrest. His mother has a checkered past, including an 18-month stint in prison for selling cocaine when Dez was a youngster.
The 23-year-old had 63 receptions for 928 yards and nine touchdowns last season, his second in the league.
Lynch was was arrested in Oakland on Saturday for DUI, according to a San Jose Mercury News report. The Seahawks star, in his hometown to award a scholarship to a recent high school graduate through his charitable foundation, was detained after a traffic stop.
Lynch’s rap sheet includes an incident in 2008 in which he drove into a woman outside a bar and drove off, costing him his license, and a misdemeanor weapons charge for which he was suspended three games in 2009.
Lynch, 26, rushed for 1,204 yards and 12 touchdowns last season, his second in Seattle after being traded from Buffalo.
♦ The area outside Penn State’s Beaver Stadium where students camp out to get tickets will no longer be known as “Paternoville.” The student group that manages the area announced a name change Monday to “Nittanyville” in an effort to “return the focus to the overall team and the thousands of students who support it.”
The move comes days after the release of the Freeh report, which concludes that then-Penn State coach Joe Paterno helped cover up child sexual abuse by former assistant coach Jerry Sandusky.
ON THIS DAY TRIVIA: On July 17, 1995, which Red Sox pitcher became just the second Sox player to surrender a home run to the first batter he faced in his major league debut, giving up a longball to Keith Lockhart of the Royals in a 4-3 loss? Hint: This pitcher was still active in the majors earlier this season.
|Red Sox’ Bill James claims Freeh report exonerated Joe Paterno||07.14.12 at 8:44 pm ET|
As the godfather of sabermetrics, Bill James has made a career out of looking at widely available information and coming to new and different conclusions.
In his “Hey Bill” Q&A on Friday, and later on ESPN’s The Doug Gottlieb Show, James discussed his rather different and controversial evaluation of the information laid out in Louis Freeh‘s investigation of the Jerry Sandusky scandal at Penn State and former coach Joe Paterno‘s role in it.
Below is the relevant passage, with the emphasis having been offered in the original article on James’ website:
Independent report on Penn State scandal: “The evidence shows that Mr. Paterno was made aware of the 1998 investigation of Sandusky, followed it closely, but failed to take any action, even though Sandusky had been a key member of his coaching staff for almost 30 years, and had an office just steps away from Mr. Paterno’s.” Asked by: Bruce Answered: 7/13/2012
The Freeh reports states quite explicitly and at least six times (a) that the 1998 incident did NOT involve any criminal conduct — on the part of Sandusky or anyone else — and (b) that Paterno had forced the resignation of Sandusky before the 1998 incident occurred.
The 1998 incident was perceived AT THE TIME to involve no criminal conduct. The May 3, 1998 incident was very, very, very thoroughly investigated by at least four different agencies (University police, state police, and two different child welfare agencies), all four of which issued written reports stating that no criminal event had occurred. In retrospect, since the actions were part of a pattern of criminal conduct, it may be said that they were criminal conduct in and of themselves, but no one saw that at the time.
In any case, what EXACTLY is it that Paterno should have done? Fire him again? It is preposterous to argue, in my view, that PATERNO should have taken action after all of the people who were legally charged to take action had thoroughly examined the case and decided that no action was appropriate.
In a follow-up post, James — a Red Sox senior adviser — said that satisfying the minimum legal requirements “is totally and absolutely irrelevant to the defense of Joe Paterno.”
|ESPN’s Jeremy Schaap on D&C: ‘The evidence is all there in black and white’ against Joe Paterno||07.13.12 at 10:11 am ET|
ESPN reporter Jeremy Schaap , who has covered the Jerry Sandusky child abuse scandal at Penn State, appeared on Dennis & Callahan on Friday to discuss Thursday’s release of the Freeh Report and its consequences for the legacy of Joe Paterno. To listen to the interview, visit the Dennis & Callahan audio on demand page.
Schaap said that former FBI director Louis Freeh’s report has all the evidence to prove that Paterno knew about the crimes Sandusky was committing and did nothing to stop it.
“The evidence is all there in black and white,” Schaap said. “It is all in the appendices, these e-mails, and they are damning. And while I wouldn’t say [the investigation] was private because there weren’t a lot of people who really gave it serious thought who believed that Joe Paterno did not know about it in the 1998 investigation, until yesterday we didn’t have any evidence. Now there is evidence that proves that he was lying about the fact that he didn’t know anything about allegations against Sandusky, [Mike] McQueary came to him in 2001, lied to a grand jury, spokespeople lied, his family lied, he lied — this is not an incidental piece of information.”
Now that this evidence has been released, there likely will be more criminal prosecutions against former university president Graham Spanier, vice president Gary Schultz and athletic director Tim Curley. However, what does this report mean for Penn State as a university?
“It’s not as if Penn State is going away,” Schaap said. “This is a terrible blow, obviously, for the university. We can only hope that it does the right thing going forward. Instead of hiring highly aggressive attorneys to defend it against civil claims in terms of some kind of a humane resolution of those claims from the victims. That it doesn’t act as it has acted in the past, which was to do everything it could above all else to protect the institution at the expense of the victims.” Read the rest of this entry »
|Wednesday’s Morning Mashup: Joe Paterno’s family denies coach protected Jerry Sandusky||07.11.12 at 7:43 am ET|
WEDNESDAY’S BROADCAST HIGHLIGHTS:
NBA: Orlando Summer League, Celtics vs. Pacers, 11 a.m. (NBA TV)
MiLB: Triple-A All-Star Game, 7 p.m. (MLB Network)
AROUND THE WEB:
♦ Former FBI director Louis Freeh announced that he would release his findings on the Penn State scandal Thursday morning, but after reports indicated Joe Paterno‘s legacy will be further tarnished, the late coach’s family decided to make a preemptive strike. The family released a statement Tuesday insisting that the longtime Penn State coach “did not cover up for Jerry Sandusky.”
“Joe Paterno did not know that Jerry Sandusky was a pedophile,” the statement read. “Joe Paterno did not act in any way to prevent a proper investigation of Jerry Sandusky. To claim otherwise is a distortion of the truth.”
Before he died in January, Paterno supported the trustees’ decision to have Freeh conduct a thorough investigation, but the family — which was denied the opportunity to see the report ahead of its release — said it now has concerns about the fairness and confidentiality of Freeh’s work.
“It is our firm belief that the report would be stronger and more credible if we were simply given a chance to review the findings concerning Joe Paterno in order to present the case he was never allowed to make,” the family said.
♦ Chargers CEO A.G. Spanos is not happy with his sales staff after a representative e-mailed a Chiefs fan (and blogger) with an offer for a discount for a Kansas City group to attend the Chiefs-Chargers game in San Diego this season. The fan blogged about the offer, and it appeared all over the Internet.
“When I saw that e-mail, I thought, ‘Wow. This is kind of hilarious. I’ll have a little fun with them on this,” Chiefs fan Patrick Allen told the San Diego Union-Tribune. “It kind of just steamrolled from there.”
Spanos read about the situation Friday, while Chargers fans criticized the team.
“I totally understand that reaction,” Spanos said. “It’s disappointing because we’ve been so aggressive this year with trying to sell to new Chargers fans. We hired 18 new people. We’re launching a season ticket-holder referral program. … We’ve been very aggressive. We’re trying our best to pack the stadium with Chargers fans. This article, it hurt.”
♦ An Ohio man found a box in his grandfather’s attic that contained hundreds of 1910 baseball cards, and it turned out to be one of the biggest discoveries in the history of card collecting. The cards, in near-mint condition, are expected to bring in up to $3 million when put up for auction.
“It’s like finding the Mona Lisa in the attic,” said 51-year-old Karl Kissner, who stumbled upon the treasure while cleaning up following the death of his aunt, who had inherited the house.
ON THIS DAY TRIVIA: On July 11, 1960, which Red Sox pitcher started and lost the All-Star Game (the first of two played that year)?
QUOTE OF THE DAY: “The game is a game. We’re all competitive and we’re all trying to win. It’s not less painful when you’re out in the outfield and people keep smacking balls around like they did today. … Ultimately we want to win this game. It doesn’t matter if it’s an All-Star Game or a regular-season game. We’re all competitive and we all want to win.” – Blue Jays slugger Jose Bautista, downplaying the players’ apparent lack of interest in the All-Star Game
STAT OF THE DAY: 14 – Consecutive innings in which the American League has failed to score in the All-Star Game, dating back to last year’s loss
‘NET RESULTS: Jose Canseco now is a pitchman for Old Milwaukee.
TRIVIA ANSWER: Bill Monbouquette, who allowed four runs in two innings in the American League’s 5-3 loss
SOOTHING SOUNDS: Suzanne Vega turns 53 Wednesday.
|Jerry Sandusky reportedly wrote love letters to victims||06.06.12 at 11:29 am ET|
Former Penn State assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky wrote love letters to his child molestation victims, according to ABC News.
The witness known as Victim 4 will present the letters as a part of the testimony once the trial begins. The letters, described as “creepy,” were allegedly written in Sandusky’s handwriting and included a letter written in the third person.
Tuesday, when information on the alleged letter was revealed to ABC News, marked the first day of jury selection. The trial is set to begin on Monday.
Sandusky was arrested last year on child molestation charges, and Victim 4 was one of Sandusky’s alleged victims.
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