Mitchell report: Good start on Penn State reforms

Published on NewsOK Modified: November 30, 2012 at 4:31 pm •  Published: November 30, 2012
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Penn State president Rodney Erickson issued a statement saying the university was proud of the progress it has made.

"While we recognize that there is much more to do, we're happy that Sen. Mitchell and his team recognize all that we have done and we are committed to continuing these efforts, in full compliance with the consent decree and the athletics integrity agreement," Erickson said.

Mitchell will keep tabs on the university's actions for five years under a binding consent decree it made with the Indianapolis-based NCAA and the Big Ten Conference following Sandusky's conviction.

The landmark sanctions from the NCAA included a four-year ban from postseason play and significant scholarship cuts for the marquee football program.

The agreement with college sports' governing body also included a $60 million fine, among other requirements, but the football program avoided being suspended, the so-called death penalty.

Pennsylvania's congressional delegation on Friday wrote to Emmert, asking him to devote the entire $60 million to child abuse prevention efforts within the state, rather than the minimum of 25 percent currently earmarked.

The university is implementing an athletics code of conduct, which its legal counsel said reaffirms current guidelines.

Mitchell's report noted the code of conduct would be circulated for review and signature to athletes, coaches, administrators, team managers and others in the university community, including trustees.

But three trustees at their board's Nov. 16 meeting sought to emphasize that passing such a code didn't equate to the board giving its approval to the NCAA sanctions, which were agreed to by Erickson. That underscored that deep fractures remain among some alumni over the penalties and Erickson's handling of talks with the NCAA.

Most vocal critics are particularly incensed that the sanctions affected players who had nothing to do with the abuse scandal and that the NCAA acted with uncharacteristic speed in handing down penalties while other legal issues were unresolved.

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Online:

Mitchell report: http://bit.ly/TwIuhL



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