Comments

  1. dobbinriddle says

    PZ, can you share your time machine technology? I see you posted this story on November 11, 2011 at 2:20 pm.

  2. Carlie says

    This is the kind of story for which the Daily Show format being a comedy is a bit constricting. You can see on his face at the end how much he wants to rant and swear about the Paterno supporters and the whole mess and go all Olbermann worst person of the week on them, but has to hold himself back.

  3. docslacker says

    Are you in Europe, PZ? If you hop over to Spain someday, I’ll treat you to some tapas and sangria.

  4. Craig says

    I wonder if Penn State was a Catholic university, would they still have fired Paterno and Spanier, or just moved them to Georgetown?

  5. says

    First time commenter here! This just pisses me off. Ever since I first heard about this I have been trying to figure out a way to explain to my 6 yr old son what to do if he finds himself in the midst of a pedophile. I shouldn’t have to explain this to him. I am now scared to let him out of my sight since, apparently, there are so many people that think that his well being is second to almost anything else in the world.

    These students need a kick in the teeth. I don’t know what pisses me off more, the fact that this was allowed to happen or the fact that these kids think that letting a pedophile off the hook is ok as long as they have a winning team. Where is the human decency in the world?

  6. davidct says

    As usual, any thoughts about the victims is completely absent. After all we are talking about the firing of “Saint” Joe who can do no wrong – he brings in the big bucks after all. Glad to see the youth of America have their morals.

  7. Dick the Damned says

    The difference between football & religion? Footballers kick a ball into touch; priests touch a ball for kicks.

  8. moonbat52 says

    As one stuck in the middle of this mess (Not So Happy Valley), I can say with some confidence that an Egyptian river has been diverted to run down the middle of College Avenue (main street in State College). Also, if someone as important as Joe can be held accountable for his actions, how will those students ever achieve a status where they can skate through life without consequences. If a Pep$i $tate player failed to execute as badly as JoePa, his ass would have been benched. Just running the route and putting up your hands at the proper moment (the bare minimum) wouldn’t be enough. Joe did the bare minimum in reporting things. It wasn’t enough.

  9. Dick the Damned says

    I’ll try again!

    A footballer kicks balls into touch; priests touch balls for kicks.

  10. Gus Snarp says

    The ending of that segment was perfect. Stewart really nailed it. Maybe some of those rioting idiots are Daily Show fans and a few of them will watch that and realize how stupid they’re being.

  11. ChasCPeterson says

    Dan, it still makes no sense. Keep the day job.

    As I said elsewhere, one important difference between Pennsylvania State University and the Roman Catholic Church is that Penn State has a pretty good Biology department.

  12. ~~Silk says

    I read your posts through a feed on Google.com/reader. You may (or may not) be amused to know that the ad at the bottom of the post feed is, today and frequently, for an online Christian dating site, ChristianMingle.com. The header on the ad is “Jesus Christ is Lord”.

  13. Alverant says

    Silk remember, every ad you see for Jesus takes money away from teaching starving children in Africa the right way to worship and puts it into the pockets of those more likely to actually help them.

  14. andyo says

    This Jon Stewart guy seems like a pretty sharp fellow. He’s gonna do just fine in the world of news.

    What?! This is a comedy show?

  15. Kaylakaze says

    Every one of these students needs to be expelled. They’re clearly too stupid to be allowed in a college.

  16. says

    The leading figures in the Church wear lace and satin and funny hats covered with embroidery. The leading figures in football wear knickers with padded knees and lace-up fronts, tops with padded shoulders, and funny decal-decorated hats with little chin straps (and they often accessorize with dark eye makeup). It’s obvious that both fields of endeavor are exceedingly unmanly.

  17. Nerdette says

    The fact they named a library after Paterno tells me everything I need to know about Penn State. A library named after a football coach. A LIBRARY.

  18. schism says

    Maybe some of those rioting idiots are Daily Show fans and a few of them will watch that and realize how stupid they’re being.

    Or, more realistically, they’ll stop watching the Daily Show.

  19. says

    That football is really a U.S. religion is old news: I read a detailed explanation of the parallels about thirty years ago. Maybe Jon Stewart knows his cultural history.

    Gamermomma, he’s pretty young but you can teach him that it’s OK to talk to strangers if you’re there and not OK if he’s on his own; to back up and stay out of arms’ reach if they approach; to tell them to ask an adult if they want help; and to tell you if someone makes them uncomfortable. And I agree, that sucks.

  20. Bill says

    This quote comes from a cheesy movie but it tends to apply…

    “A person is smart. People are dumb, panicky dangerous animals.”

  21. says

    I mean your son should tell adults to ask another adult if the adults want help. Too many pronouns!

    I am at a loss to understand why the discussion ignores the fact that the witness walked away from the sexual assault of a child instead of interfering to stop it, protect the child, and call police.

  22. Abalone diver says

    Can we start a movement to get all the other college teams to refuse to play them for at least the next year?

  23. ButchKitties says

    I got hit hard by Onion’s Law this week. I’ve been on a road trip so my access to the news was spotty. I heard there were riots at Penn State and assumed students were rioting because their athletic department had been harboring a child rapist. Rioting over such a heinous conspiracy made perfect sense to me. Rioting in defense of such an indefensible action was too remote a possibility to even be considered.

    So when I finally saw a headline saying that the students were rioting because JoePa got fired, I assumed it was an Onion headline.

    The evening news quickly disabused me of that notion. Does Penn State require all freshman to take a course in having one’s moral priorities completely backwards?

  24. jacobfromlost says

    Well, now we see why individuals failed to report this. Apparently football trumps all of reality and can do no wrong, so a HORRENDOUS wrong that the rest of society probably won’t understand must be kept quiet for the greater good of the school and the game.

    I wonder what the professors are saying with a class of students like this? Would they dare voice a counter view (you know, a rational one where football doesn’t give one the ability to rape children?)? Sounds like a perfectly teachable moment to me.

    As an aside, do you think any of those rioters have thought about the fact that they were the same age as some of the abused children were WHEN THE ABUSE WAS HAPPENING? Good grief. Do they not have brothers and sisters? Or common decency?

  25. leefedorchuk says

    Bjork once described football as a fertility festival, “Eleven sperm trying to get into the egg. I feel sorry for the goalkeeper.”

  26. unbound says

    So many levels of disgust with this event. The students seem to demonstrate that Penn State doesn’t do their job teaching their students to think. My teenage daughter and son understand the issue perfectly well and are able to understand what is happening; how the heck can college students not comprehend the issue correctly?

    Jon Stewart hit the nail on the head. College athletics have the same level of loyalty and thought (lack thereof) as religion. And what little education is provided by Penn State clearly isn’t directed at critical thought.

    I can tell you one college that none my children will be attending even if they get their act together regarding child rape.

  27. Amphiox, OM says

    Who knew football and religion could share so many similarities?

    A parallel used earlier for comedic purposes by The Simpsons, if I recall, in an episode where Reverend Lovejoy harangued against Sunday Night Football as idolatry.

  28. Sili says

    I have been trying to figure out a way to explain to my 6 yr old son what to do if he finds himself in the midst of a pedophile.

    WARNING! Inappropriate response ahead!

    I think you’ll find that it’s far more likely for a paedophile to find himself in the midst of your son.

  29. odenata says

    While I certainly agree that Paterno should have been fired, I don’t understand why so much of the focus is on him, instead of on Mike McQueary, who actually saw the rape happening and did nothing to stop it, and who then told Paterno instead of going to the police. Why is he still employed by Penn State? And now I see articles saying he might be protected as whistle-blower? Really? He never went to the police!

  30. says

    This is an emotionally interesting experience for me. I grew up in central Pa. While not a PSU alum and only a very casual football fan, JoePa was (still is) a hero of epic proportions. And his rep for straight arrow integrity was all of a piece. Even we (few and quiet) non religious would willingly lower our voices when discussing the Pope of Pennsylvania.

    Now this has come out, and the facts point very clearly that morally, being peremptorily fired is an absolute minimum of merited “punishment”. By not directly reporting to police and more so by continuing to work with Sandusky he was morally, though not so far as I can tell, legally, abetting and condoning the act after the fact (and given the nature of the crime, almost certainly a passive enabler of ongoing crimes).

    But JoePa was a hero, more than a saint, the living breathing embodiment of the rightness of Pennsylvania small town/rural life. (I’ve never met him, only ever seen him in person as part of a crowd). It *hurts* and a part of my brain is still running around looking for a way to exonerate him from even though intellectually I *know* there is no “out”. He willfully overlooked, effectively condoning child rape.

    We are intensely tribal creatures and the need for heroes lies deep within us. To an extent we don’t even see, we build our identies around such heroes. That is what the Penn State students were rioting for, for support of their hero. It short circuits rational thought. I understand them completely, even as I know they are wrong.

    — TWZ

  31. naturalcynic says

    Nerdette, the library is named after Paterno because *he paid for it.*

    This is a prime example of how a lot of philanthropy works in our society. Big shot executive gets paid several times what they should get paid. Big shot feels like a big shot because he gets paid so much: “Oh, they love me so much that they are giving me everything they want”. Big shot feels magnanimous and gives some money back, feels good about it. Then big shot gets his name on the building and big shot feels he can do no wrong.

  32. christinamorris says

    I find Tim Minchins song about the Motherfucking Pope to be most appropriate in this case. Those students have all their standards backwards and need a massive timeout.

    That that “gentleman” is the “the living breathing embodiment of the rightness of Pennsylvania small town/rural life” to me says a lot. Either A. he’s not, or B. stay away from rural Pennsylvania.

    Allowing Child Rape to occur is the SAME as Child Rape. That he is without a job, and his work is tarnished is the absolute least that should occur to him.

  33. says

    Remember the Milgram experiments, where people proved far easier to persuade to ignore the harm they were doing than most would believe.

    Imagine someone you know and trust, even love. I mean someone specific, in your life. Now picture finding them naked, assaulting a child. I know a lot of people say they would do anything to protect that child – but it seems that, in practice, all too few do. (Mike McQueary, the Penn State grad assistant, didn’t.)

    That’s not remotely an excuse, mind – any more than understanding the motive for a murder makes the murder justifiable. But one lesson that should be drawn from this tragedy is that, apparently, it frequently proves a lot harder to do the right thing in such cases than one would expect. Which means that the right thing needs to be made clear, reinforced, and supported by training and policy. Make sure to ponder that a bit, get things straight in your head, so you’re not paralyzed with shock and indecision if something terrible like this ever comes up in your life.

    On a side note, because my oldest son is in a Scout troop chartered through a Catholic church, I recently had to go through Catholic child-abuse prevention training – “Protecting God’s Children” – so I could go on campouts. It was actually pretty good. My biggest surprise was they made very clear that child abuse isn’t a ‘homosexual problem’.

    Now, the videos did rather heavily downplay how badly cases were mishandled by the Church. And they also went out of their way to state that priests don’t abuse because of their vow of celibacy. (The notion that those with unwanted sexual preferences might be attracted to such a thing went unmentioned.) But overall, despite the theological noises here and there, the training seemed pretty useful and a serious attempt to prevent future abuse.

    I am in no sense a fan of the Catholic church. But at least some elements of it seem to be stepping up and addressing a serious problem there.

  34. JGC says

    JoePa may once have been considered a hero, but clearly that perception was false and he will never again be considered one by anyone who understands what the word ‘hero’ means. His legacy will not be that of a a great coach but of a terrible one: someone willing to turnea blind eye to the serial rape of children in order to advance his team’s record and his own professional career.

    The same by the way is true of all others in the athletic department and at the university who were aware of Sandusky’s assaults and did not immediately inform the local police, child protective services, etc., and act to bar Sandusky from further contact with minors. This absolutely includes McQueary, who witnessed a rape and elected to walk away rather than shout “What the hell are you doing, Sandusky!” (which would likely have been all that was to halt the assault) and immediately report the incidence to the local, not campus, police. In the light of his failure to act then or in a timely fashion thereafter the fact he was willing years later to testify before the grand jury isn’t sufficient to make him the heroic whislte-blower so many wish to paint him as.

  35. hockeybob says

    So they managed to fire Pope JoePa; now if we could only find a way to fire Pope Ratzi the Nazi!

    Greetings also to ColonelZen – we’re familiar with you in another forum… do the phrases “inept criminals from Utah”, SCOX, and peyote ring a bell? ;-)

  36. Rev. BigDumbChimp says

    We are intensely tribal creatures and the need for heroes lies deep within us.

    Speak for yourself.

    Heroes are overrated. They’re humans just like us.

    Point to actions and celebrate them, people are flawed and will let you down when you put them on pedestals at unreasonable heights.

  37. Zugswang says

    ColonelZen:

    I think, more than anything, it speaks tremendously to the dangers of idolatry. I hesitate to agree that these riots were motivated out of a sense of disillusionment. I don’t know if you are familiar with what happened when Bobby Knight got fired from Indiana University a few years back, but Knight was a fixture of that community, not just in Bloomington, but throughout the state of Indiana. The man was idolized, not as a role model, but as a coach. He lacked the sainted reputation that Paterno had. This was a guy that everyone knew had a history of assaulting his players and saying some very stupid and unenlightened things; suffice to say he was not a nice person. And yet he was still loved and respected.

    When IU’s president fired him, students and fans alike were united in calling for the man’s head. Never mind that Knight had been warned about abusing his players, and that one more incident would mean his termination. No, most fans were just angry that they were losing a talented basketball coach, and knew what it would mean for the school’s basketball team.

    I think the fans who rioted in Bloomington had the same kind of shortsighted motivations that many students did that night in College Park. They didn’t want to see their coach go, because it meant the program went with him.

  38. says

    I had never heard of this before, but it is highly creepy.

    “the decade-old organization known as TheCall has said Detroit is a “microcosm of our national crisis” in all areas, including “the rising tide of the Islamic movement.”

    Leaders of TheCall believe a satanic spirit is shaping all parts of U.S. society, and it must be challenged through intensive Christian prayer and fasting. Such a demonic spirit has taken hold of specific areas, Detroit among them, organizers say. In the months ahead of their rallies, teams of local organizers often travel their communities performing a ritual called “divorcing Baal,” the name of a demon spirit, to drive out the devil from each location. . . .

    Theologically, Engle is part of a stream of Pentecostalism that is independent of any denomination and is intensely focused on the end times. Within these churches, some leaders are elevated to the position of apostle, or hearing directly from God.”

    These wackjobs get tens of thousands of people to rallies in football stadiums.

  39. Esteleth says

    You’re right, Zugswang.
    I grew up not far from Bloomington (and in the rural Midwest, distance is relative anyway – shared culture transcends geography), and I remember clearly the brouhaha when Knight got fired.

    I heard someone say, “Well yes, he’s a violent asshole. But he’s such a good coach!” without a trace of irony.

  40. Amphiox, OM says

    I don’t understand why so much of the focus is on him, instead of on Mike McQueary, who actually saw the rape happening and did nothing to stop it, and who then told Paterno instead of going to the police.

    One could just barely understand McQueary fleeing the scene and not trying to stop it at the time. That is an act of terrible cowardice, but in the heat of such a moment, I can just, barely, see it as an explainable momentary failing of an otherwise normally decent human being.

    One could almost even understand going to Paterno first and not to the police.

    But afterwards? After the next time he sees that nothing has been done? The next time he sees Sandusky and no sign of any sanction against him? And not inquire further with Paterno? And not go to the police then? For 10 years?

    That cannot be excused as any momentary failing of courage. That’s continuous premeditation.

    McQueary certainly deserves much more sanction that he has so far received, though to be fair I have seen quite a bit of condemnation of him at least from some media sources. (And the sanctions may yet come).

    But I think the focus on Paterno is still fair. “The buck stops here” as they say. The responsibility is always greatest on the one who has the most power. And the moment Paterno was told of the matter, the weight of the responsibility transfers to him.

  41. Moonbat52 says

    Regarding Mr. McQueary’s actions, an explantion (not an excuse) is that he did everything required of him under the law. PA is one of six states that permits reporting of such actions via internal hierachy. In his grand jury testimony, he said that the activity did not appear to be forcible. Again, not an excuse not to go to the police himself, but, considering his own personal friendship/mentor/mentee relationship with the members of the coaching staff and a possible sense of denial of the whole thing, understandable that he might chose the less confrontational route. Also, had he called the police and the juvenile didn’t back up his version, he ran the risk of losing his position and possibly ruining his entire career, so he took easier path. I don’t know if either of those scenarios is accurate, but, technically, he did nothing wrong or illegal. Cowardly, maybe, and he’s not going to be on the sidelines Saturday.

    Paterno was aware of a history of unseemly behavior on Sandusky’s part: a 1998 incident of borderline behavior the local DA chose not to pursue (said DA mysteriously disappeared in 2005)after which Sandusky suddenly “retired” and a 2000 incident allegedly witnessed and reported by a janitor(to a supervisor but not to the police.)Hence, the disparity in consequences.

    Everyone wants to believe “I would have done the right thing”, but things can get fuzzy when one needs to turn on a loved one or risk the loss of a job.

    Everyone involved should have done better. If anyone in the entire chain had done the right thing as far back as 1998(and having a chain of responsibility should have mitigated against a single point human failure or frailty) this entire chain of events could have been avoided and several (dozens?) of children could have been spared a horrible ordeal.

    On brighter note, there’s fund raising for the RAINN (Rape, Abuse, and Incest National Network) and a vigil in support of the victims. The kids (some of them) can do the right thing.

    And to clarify, nerdette and neuroturtle, the library the Patee Library (after a university founder). Joe paid for the Paterno wing. He’s done a lot of good around here, but he screwed the pooch on this one. As the critics say, a play is only as good as it’s last act. Joe’s last act has been a real stinker. I personally think he’s drifting further from reality each day.

  42. says

    I’m not talking about law, I’m talking about ethics and the Golden Rule. No law requires us to go to the aid of accident victims, but it is the right thing to do. No law requires us to interrupt a sexual assault, but it is the right thing to do, if possible. And if you’re a 90-pound granny who needs an iron frying pan to do so, I’m on your side.

    Here’s a poll at philly.com about correct responses to the situation (at the bottom).

    And here’s a good proposal: move most of the student body to satellite campuses and switch to varsity football.

  43. jacobfromlost says

    There seem to be several posts on here minimizing, rationalizing, and defending the indefensible. I really don’t get it, although I can easily imagine that that very attitude, widespread, is what led to these horrendous child rapes.

  44. says

    Regarding Michael McQueary, I think this is actually one of many indications that there is a great deal more to this story than we yet know. That the university has not fired him and indeed seems to be standing by him suggests to me that he may, in fact, have done more than just tell Papa Joe and try to forget about the whole thing. I.e., other people knew. Many other oddities — e.g., Sandusky retired, unusually young, shortly after the first, somewhat ambiguous allegations, when he was poised to be Paterno’s heir and could have gotten a head coaching job at another college (in fact Temple recruited him) or a job in the NFL. But they let him keep all those privileges, and then McQueary sees the attack. Obviously Paterno and the AD, and probably the president, already knew about Sandusky’s hobby by then. What did McQueary really run into when he tried to tell his tale? Remember, the Grand Jury presentment is far from everything the prosecutors know — it’s the minimum they need to support the indictments and scare accessories into flipping. You don’t know 25% of this yet. And of course more victims and possibly other witnesses will come forward.

    The Governor, who was AG and who started the investigation, also knows a lot more, but he’s not allowed to talk about it. If he wanted McQueary fired, it would happen, the trustees are taking their marching orders from him.

  45. Rev. BigDumbChimp says

    Everyone wants to believe “I would have done the right thing”, but things can get fuzzy when one needs to turn on a loved one or risk the loss of a job.

    tu quoque excuses don’t excuse.

    He did not do the right thing.

  46. JGC says

    re Moonbat52 @ 48

    Regarding Mr. McQueary’s actions, an explantion (not an excuse) is that he did everything required of him under the law. PA is one of six states that permits reporting of such actions via internal hierachy.

    Maybe he did everything required by law, but doing what is minimally required by law doesn’t discharge his ethical responsibility in this instance.

    In his grand jury testimony, he said that the activity did not appear to be forcible.

    Forcible or consensual, a minor child does not have the capacity to proivde informed consent to engage in sex with an adult–i.e., even if it wasn’t forcible it was rape.

    Again, not an excuse not to go to the police himself, but, considering his own personal friendship/mentor/mentee relationship with the members of the coaching staff and a possible sense of denial of the whole thing, understandable that he might chose the less confrontational route.

    I’m sorry, but i don’t understand his electing for a less confrontational route, anymore than i understand his not immediately intervening at the time of the crime.

    Also, had he called the police and the juvenile didn’t back up his version, he ran the risk of losing his position and possibly ruining his entire career, so he took easier path.

    In other words, he acted just like JoePa by putting his own career interests ahead of his ethical responsibilty to act in teh interest of child victims of rape.

    I don’t know if either of those scenarios is accurate, but, technically, he did nothing wrong or illegal.

    He may have done nothing technically illegal, but he did do something wrong: he failed to intervene at the time of theassault and he failed to report the incident to the police in a timely manner.

    Cowardly, maybe, and he’s not going to be on the sidelines Saturday.

    He’s been on those sidelines ten years too long as it is.

  47. Jim says

    @moonbat52

    “In his grand jury testimony, he said that the activity did not appear to be forcible.”

    Kid was 10. Irrelevant testimony is irrelevant.

  48. What a Maroon says

    having a chain of responsibility should have mitigated against a single point human failure or frailty

    On the other hand, having a chain of responsibility makes it all too easy in a case like this to assume that someone else will do the heavy lifting of reporting to the police. It should have been clear to McQueary that his responsibility was to go to the police, and if it wasn’t, Paterno and everyone up the chain should have told him to go.

    But instead, everyone kicked it upstairs.

  49. says

    christinmorris @ 39

    That that “gentleman” is the “the living breathing embodiment of the rightness of Pennsylvania small town/rural life” to me says a lot. Either A. he’s not, or B. stay away from rural Pennsylvania.

    Yes and yes. Yes he is, and yes that’s what’s wrong with rural/small-town Pa … and likewise the rural small-town mentality of what some call “real america”.

    I doubt that the illness is exclusively american, but it seems particularly pandemic in the US, and the riot of PSU students in “support” of JoePa is just one of the rare overt symptoms.

    The illness is “team” first. My tribe first, my group first. … and then we nominate individuals as living avatars for the team. Nothing is forbidden in support of the team, and even the peccadillos of individuals however heinous must be overlooked if acting to punish them would detriment the team and its icons.

    We look only to our “in” group for guidance and evaluation. If our friends say it’s OK, it’s OK. If nobody around you says anything, the minister in the corner church doesn’t thunder, and your bosses say nothing, everything is OK, and the “abstract” notions of right and wrong even when it’s clue-by-four obvious that things are wrong by those rules, simply don’t matter.

    — TWZ

  50. Pteryxx says

    Another good article, this one from sportswriter Howard Bryant on ESPN.com. He compares the moral cowardice of Penn State with that shown in child-abuse scandals by the Catholic church, the Mormon church, and a Red Sox cover-up that spanned thirty years.

    Penn State, Joe Paterno and failure of power

    Even now, as the heartbreaking details emerge, pages of grand jury testimony are absorbed and parsed, and a seamy picture of alleged child abuse and the subsequent failures to act comes into clear, indefensible focus, the reflex of the Penn State hierarchy involved is one of tone deafness.

    That focus revolves not around the children who most needed the adults to be grown-ups but around protecting the power: the big, untouchable football program with its legendary coach with the big name and the big reputation, the do-gooder charity with the board of directors with the big names on it.

  51. Sili says

    hockeybob says:

    So they managed to fire Pope JoePa; now if we could only find a way to fire Pope Ratzi the Nazi!

    Stop that.

    There are plenty of legitimate criticisms to level at Benny Hex. Throwing the Nazi card is just gonna lose you the game.

  52. illuminata says

    I’m finding myself physcially repulsed by this these not-excuses that are absolutely excuses for McQueary’s behavior.

    This situation has laid the living, breathing, festering monster of rape-culture more bare than ever before for me.

    That there are so.many.people so quick to make excuses for those who had the chance to help, but did nothing, brings home just how and why rapists operate with such ease.

    I’m disgusted and defeated, but really fucking glad my parents didn’t raise a selfish coward.

  53. jacobfromlost says

    “I’m disgusted and defeated, but really fucking glad my parents didn’t raise a selfish coward.”

    I am disgusted too.

    I wouldn’t CARE if I lost my job, career, or the whole frickin’ State of Pennsylvania hated my guts! I wouldn’t have been able to function as a human being until I did the right thing. If I live in a place that finds that unacceptable, then I really REALLY need to find another place to live, and don’t think I will be keeping my mouth shut in the mean time. I’m telling everyone who will listen what happened, and why I was fired!

    In fact, I would sacrifice my life to save a child. I thought that was just what made one a human being. Maybe not. (And I have been in situations where child abuse had to be reported, and I reported it immediately.)

  54. Amphiox, OM says

    Again, not an excuse not to go to the police himself, but, considering his own personal friendship/mentor/mentee relationship with the members of the coaching staff and a possible sense of denial of the whole thing, understandable that he might chose the less confrontational route.

    It is rank emotional cowardice. A refusal to risk losing all that one has invested emotionally into the relationship, since confrontation will most likely destroy that relationship. And perhaps a refusal to confront the harsh reality that one has, essentially, invested this emotional capital in an undeserving recipient.

    One could perhaps understand the first lack of action it as an impulsive thing, a flight in panic without thought (but consider how our society judges similar examples of such cowardice in virtually any other set of circumstances?) but all the inaction after that cannot be so excused as a momentary lapse.

  55. Amphiox, OM says

    “In his grand jury testimony, he said that the activity did not appear to be forcible.”

    Kid was 10. Irrelevant testimony is irrelevant.

    Even the age is irrelevant. If you blackmail an adult into having sex with you, or drug them, it won’t appear forcible to a bystander either.

    It’s still rape.

  56. uncle frogy says

    words fail me completely
    I do not want to know the whole fucking story. I wish there was not a lot more that has not come out yet. My mind can spin plenty of dark plots out of the few facts I already know about these kinds of things and what people are capable of.
    Hell I can’t watch Law and Order SVU because it makes me too upset and it is just “TV”. I am content to watch this crap on the side lines and let the truth come out.
    I doubt any thing will really change much Oh there will continue to be much outrage and there will be trials and even jail for some but we will just go back to what is familiar in short order.

    As I understand it people learn this kind of behavior by themselves having been victimized . Not that all victims will go on to be victimizers but most victimizers were themselves victims.
    I am in no way making excuses for this kind of behavior I am just pointing out that by not really dealing with these kinds of “crimes” in their totality but only as an isolated crime of a “predatory pedophile” it will go on.
    Next time it happens there will more outrage and protestations how could this happen but there will be a next time of that I have no doubt.
    I am surprised that this kind of behavior is not more common in this level of sports as it is. This cult of “Aggressive Manliness” strikes me as strange and threatening.

    uncle frogy

  57. Rev. BigDumbChimp says

    In his grand jury testimony, he said that the activity did not appear to be forcible.

    This takes the cake as the most ignorant and borderline stupid comment of the thread.

    The kid was 10 years old.

    You need to familiarize yourself with the idea of consent.

  58. says

    That that “gentleman” is the “the living breathing embodiment of the rightness of Pennsylvania small town/rural life” to me says a lot. Either A. he’s not, or B. stay away from rural Pennsylvania.

    Both. The four years I spent in high school in a PA suburb were enough to convince me to run SCREAMING for college in another state. It was misery to be a teenager not fitting into any average social “boxes.” My cousin went to Penn State and I applied there to appease the family – my one visit to campus was more than enough evidence that going there would have been a disaster because I’m not a collegiate sports person and football in particular there was treated like a religion: to be praised and raised beyond reproach.

  59. says

    illuminata@62 –

    I’m finding myself physcially repulsed by this these not-excuses that are absolutely excuses for McQueary’s behavior.

    BTW, hope you’re not including me in that. Assuming that indictment is at all accurate, he deserves every bit of contempt coming to him and then some.

    I was trying to warn that, unfortunately, it’s horrifyingly easy for humans to do contemptible things. (Read up on those experiments Milgram ran…) People tend to drastically underestimate their capacity for self-serving cowardice. (Lots of people think they’d be on the front lines of the Resistance if their country was invaded. Somehow, in practice, it rarely works out that way.)

    I’m not minimizing how terrible McQueary was and is. I’m pointing out that the difference between him and ‘decent, upright people’ isn’t as large as most people imagine.

    Which sucks.

  60. Ing says

    Everyone wants to believe “I would have done the right thing”, but things can get fuzzy when one needs to turn on a loved one or risk the loss of a job.

    I can’t see how I could work with someone, even if I didn’t turn them in, who I knew raped children.

  61. jacobfromlost says

    “I’m not minimizing how terrible McQueary was and is. I’m pointing out that the difference between him and ‘decent, upright people’ isn’t as large as most people imagine.”

    I think you are wrong.

  62. Ing says

    And I can admit that I might hesitate calling, especially with how powerful these people apparently were with the town. It’s close to stumbling on a mob hit. Do you call the police knowing that it means uprooting your entire life and destroying all personal ties you have?

    But I can’t see myself working with someone like that.

  63. Ing says

    Then again, even with hesitation, I can’t see myself not calling because with my predisposition to crippling guilt I think not calling would kill me.

  64. jacobfromlost says

    “Then again, even with hesitation, I can’t see myself not calling because with my predisposition to crippling guilt I think not calling would kill me.”

    Me too. Also, if all my personal relationships would be destroyed because those people decided to ostracize me for doing the right thing, then why would I want to preserve those relationships by keeping quiet? I wouldn’t even WANT to have relationships with such people, and would tell them exactly why to their faces.

  65. siveambrai says

    1. Please don’t beat up on the teachers. I taught at PSU for three years as a graduate student. We are dedicated and we do the absolute best that we can. It’s quite frankly not my job to teach your kid how to start thinking at 18years of age. It was your job to do that 10 plus years before I ever even knew that they existed. It was also your job to tone down the sense of entitlement that your child has… and believe me the students at Penn State have plenty. I had reviews on the last course that I taught at PSU where they gave me 0s, 2s, and 3s on my evaluations because they needed to go home and *gasp* actually study to learn the material in a 400 level course. That sense of entitlement didn’t just develop the moment they walk through my classroom door. It has to come from somewhere.

    2. Entitlement is a big thing at PSU and the riot this week is a great example of that. Students in general have never been told no. Never had anything they loved taken away as an ACTUAL PUNISHMENT FOR BAD ACTIONS/BEHAVIOR. They have no concept that actions like this deserve repercussions. That failure in rearing shows itself as a riot off campus.

    3. I am going back to campus this weekend to see some friends. My husband was asked to help work the game because I’m assuming people are taking off in order to be away from the stadium. Besides the ethical issues I have at the moment with taking any type of money from the university my overwhelming issue is that I’m sincerely afraid for his physical safety tomorrow if he goes near the stadium. It’s going to be a very big game, a lot of angry people are going to be there, and there will be a lot of alcohol available and consumed. If there is a riot that ends with deaths tomorrow I can’t say I will be surprised. And to me that is the most frightening thing of all.

  66. Hercules Grytpype-Thynne says

    I don’t think I believe that video. The second student interviewed is clearly Victoria Jackson in disguise.

  67. cbc says

    I’ve long believed that sports loyalties were strikingly similar (and often equally disgusting) to religious beliefs. People waste money, time, and energy.

  68. JGC says

    Everyone wants to believe “I would have done the right thing”, but things can get fuzzy when one needs to turn on a loved one or risk the loss of a job.

    Sorry, I know others have spoke to it but I still feel a need to address this point.

    Nothing got fuzzy with respect to Sandusky’s behavior, even if McQ framed his options as turning on a loved one or risking the loss of his job. The right thing to remained absolutely clear: act immediately and decisively to halt continued sexual abuse of minors, to get the abused minors the aid and counseling they need, and to hold Sandusky (and if necessary the entire university’s coaching and administrative staff) accountable.

    McQueary simply chose not to do the right thing. That his failure may have been due to pre-existing personal relationships or fear for his livelihood speaks only to motivation. It doesn’t excuse it.

  69. says

    Apparently, it’s not the first time that Penn State put winning above doing the right thing. ESPN has a new column today about a woman’s basketball coach who refused to allow lesbians on her team, despite “official” university policy passed in 1991 and sensitivity training for the coach.
    If you win enough, not even rank insubordination gets you fired.

  70. JGC says

    Ray, the difference between McQ and ‘decent, upright people’ is irreconcilable. A decent, upright person doesn’t witness a 10 year old being raped and fail to intervene.

  71. says

    There’s also a military axiom that bad news doesn’t travel uphill very well. Example, McQueary’s report that he saw Sandusky anally raping a child of ten was translated into “some kind of fondling or horseplay” and then into “horseplay in the showers.” Sandusky was then told not to shower with the kids any more. Amazingly, no one tried to find the victim, which just screams “Wilful blindness and ignorance!”

  72. says

    “Students riot in support of pervert”: it should have been an Onion article.

    According to the grand jury, then, here is how McQueary’s eyewitness account became watered down at each stage:
     
    McQueary: anal rape.
    Paterno: something of a sexual nature.
    Schultz: inappropriately grabbing of the young boy’s genitals.
    Curley: inappropriate conduct or horsing around.
    Spanier: conduct that made someone uncomfortable.
    Raykovitz: a ban on bringing kids to the locker room.

  73. abb3w says

    Er… Robert Bellah jumps to mind as a likely suspect, though from a glance at Google Scholar it looks like M. Kenneth Brody was the first to publish a paper on the particular comparison (doi:10.1177/019372357900300203).

    Or was PZ’s supposed to be a rhetorical question?

  74. ghoti says

    Not to be incredibly non-sequitur here, but I remember my brother and I not being allowed to play Little League, Pop Warner, etc…because they often played or practiced when we SHOULD be in church.

    So, while I think what happened there was reprehensible and those responsible should be prosecuted to the utmost extent possible, I’m wondering if some of the way sports are treated in the “heartland” might actually be a GOOD thing in that it’s something different than a church to be loyal to.

    Then I realize where I’m going, discard this line of thought and hope for the several thousandth time that people can / will be taught to actually THINK FOR THEMSELVES and TAKE RESPONSIBILITY and maybe stuff like this will actually stop happening.

    Call me a dreamer.

  75. Crudely Wrott says

    It’s much easier to tip shit over, burn shit up and throw shit than it is to learn shit. That (at least some) Penn State students so glaringly display this attitude might make one wonder

    WHAT THE FUCK DO THEY TEACH THESE KIDS!!!!????

    OK, they have a pretty good biology department. Apparently the course specializes in the glorification of the affects of the hormones and endorphins that group behavior elicits as more important than

    A FIFTY YEAR OLD MAN BUTT FUCKING A TEN YEAR OLD!!!!

    Mob rule, my mortal ass! Innit about time this shit gets stopped? Wait, what? You say “Its all about the game!”?

    I will counsel my grandchildren to avoid this school like the plague.

  76. Crudely Wrott says

    Yeah. And what Colonel Zen said @ # 59.

    Group think is a major contributor to this kind of thing.

  77. Julia says

    This whole thread has so many great points on why I do not trust society in general to treat “the least of these” with kindness, especially when some popular institution or person is “at risk”. Teaching children empathy should be required despite the impression that children are not “tough” to begin with.

  78. odenata says

    Cowardly, maybe, and he’s not going to be on the sidelines Saturday.

    Just want to point out that Penn State initially had him scheduled to coach the game on Saturday – they only pulled him because of threats he received.

    And now they have put him on administrative leave. I have to wonder if this is because of his role in letting a child rapist continue, or, as a quote in one of the articles says, it’s because “Penn State fans…blame McQueary for costing legendary coach Joe Paterno his job and damaging the football program’s reputation.”

    You would think people would at least have some shame about having such fucked up priorities, but I guess I’m expecting too much.

  79. odenata says

    And if Penn State fans want to blame someone for tarnishing their precious football program, why the hell aren’t they blaming Sandusky?

  80. Pteryxx says

    Just found this: McQueary might actually have whistleblower protection under Pennsylvania law.

    ESPN article

    McQueary, a former Penn State quarterback, has faced immense criticism this week for not calling police, interrupting the act or, in the nine years since he was an eyewitness, demanding answers about why Sandusky was never charged. But Stephen Kohn, the executive director of the National Whistleblowers Center in Washington, D.C., believes reporting the incident to Paterno alone could be enough to protect McQueary under the state’s whistle-blower law.

    “If they were to fire him because he made the disclosure and reported it, then he would be protected,” Kohn said. “Just because he’s unpopular, just because people blame him for having the head coach dismissed, he can’t be fired for any of that.”

    (…)

    According to the Ethics Resource Center, six in 10 employees who viewed misconduct reported it in 2010. Seventy-five percent of those told their direct manager or another supervisor. Ellen Dannin, a Penn State law professor who specializes in labor and employment law, was unsure whether McQueary would be protected as a whistle-blower but agreed that he would be held to a different standard than Paterno, even though he witnessed the act.

  81. Zugswang says

    “Students riot in support of pervert”: it should have been an Onion article.

    “Students honor Joe Paterno by witnessing illegal acts and failing to report them to authorities”

  82. odenata says

    But Stephen Kohn, the executive director of the National Whistleblowers Center in Washington, D.C., believes reporting the incident to Paterno alone could be enough to protect McQueary under the state’s whistle-blower law.

    I read that as well, but if that’s truly the case, then why wouldn’t Paterno be protected as a whistleblower for reporting it to the athletic director?

  83. Pteryxx says

    You could read the article, y’know.

    As Kohn explained it, even though McQueary was the actual witness, the level of reporting responsibility for a then-28-year-old graduate assistant and a legendary head coach is far different.

    “You have to look at where the employee is on the totem pole,” Kohn said. “There are different expectations at different levels. A manager versus an employee. A student versus a teacher. It’s just how it goes. The last thing you want to do is create an environment where people don’t even tell the supervisor.”

    According to the Ethics Resource Center, six in 10 employees who viewed misconduct reported it in 2010. Seventy-five percent of those told their direct manager or another supervisor. Ellen Dannin, a Penn State law professor who specializes in labor and employment law, was unsure whether McQueary would be protected as a whistle-blower but agreed that he would be held to a different standard than Paterno, even though he witnessed the act.

    “Joe Paterno, 10-11 years ago, was an incredibly powerful guy,” Dannin said. “What would have happened to him if he would have taken it further? If he would have insisted on answers? Nothing. It would have been resolved. What did [Paterno] have to lose versus what did [McQueary] have to lose? There’s no comparison. [Paterno] could have safely ended this.”

  84. Zugswang says

    And if Penn State fans want to blame someone for tarnishing their precious football program, why the hell aren’t they blaming Sandusky?

    No one’s saying he isn’t – it’s the only self-evident fact in this whole clusterfuck that isn’t being questioned. I guess Penn State fans’ collective moral compass isn’t so distorted that they will overtly defend the act of raping a child.

  85. says

    This inaction by McQ, I just can’t wrap my head around it. Witnessing a rape and just walking away *in shock* without intervening? Really?

    I just don’t get it.

    Carlie @ 97

    I would hope that, minimally, alumni donations to Penn State next year go down to zero.

    Yah, just like what happened with the catholic church.

  86. says

    Calling McQueary a “student” seems to be an attempt to downplay the fact that at the time of the “shower incident” he was a 28 year-old employee of the university. It’s not unreasonable to expect a 28 year-old to have acted like an adult.

    On NPR tonight they said McQueary was on “administrative leave” which means they’re going to fire him if he doesn’t quit.

  87. says

    I can’t see how I could work with someone, even if I didn’t turn them in, who I knew raped children.

    Yeah, I mean, Paterno wasn’t even making snickering “Jerry’s kids” jokes or any harsh disapproval like that, even.

  88. Rey Fox says

    So it would appear that McQueary has fled the town. No one has reported on the nature of the threats that he is facing. I had at first maybe thought he was the target of people who think he should be fired for his inadequate response to the rape, but it dawned on me earlier today that the people threatening him are quite likely threatening him because they blame him for Paterno being fired.

  89. nemo the derv says

    Remember folks, football brings in money and money is more important than children.
    Heck, how are we going to get a new stadium new facilities for education? You think children will build it. I suppose they could but those damn liberals made it illegal to use em.
    We gotta protect this old guy because he’s the one that wins football games and not the unpaid labor scholarshiped athletes on the field.

    Joe “the legend” Paterno is a football coach. Do you remember you’re high school Phys ed teacher?
    He’s the college equivalent so stop rioting and get back to drinking studying.

  90. Dr. Audley Z. Darkheart OM, liar and scoundrel says

    Good on Jon Stewart for using clear and bold language about Sandusky’s crimes. I’m sick of all of the vague terminology that’s been used in the media.

  91. nemo the derv says

    Football is a very important collegiate function.
    It uses unpaid labor amature athletes to raise funds for new stadiums new educational facilities and more athletic scholarships reduced tuition fees.
    This makes Paterno extremely important because he wins football games all by himself without any help from those on the sidelines or on the field. In fact, through his expertise in moving a ball down a grass field, he has single handedly built the entire University.

    The only usful thing a person might learn from football (that I can think of) is ethics and fairplay. Paterno is a football “legend”.
    Therefore, he must also be an ethical legend……right?
    After all, he is an ingenious legendary saint.

  92. Pteryxx says

    sparkomatic, thanks for that SciAm article. Quoting:

    According to psychological theory, every person has a social identity, which depends on being a member of various groups. “The social groups you belong to become a part of the very essence of who you feel you are,” explains psychologist Adam Galinsky, a professor at the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University. These groups can include our families and circles of friends; the clubs, churches and schools we attend; our race, ethnicity and nationality; and the list goes on. The more strongly we identify with a particular group, the more vehemently we defend its members and ideals—a trait that experts think evolved along with early human society.

    I think that’s an important consideration, not just for Penn State, and not just for members of groups covering up for each other. PZ’s fostered the Pharyngula commentariat to become

    (…) a community of fiercely independent, roaring, wrestling, arguing, fighting freethinkers; cross them, and you will get rhetorically mauled, and our battles are not about polite batting about with little kitty paws at issues, but should involve claws and fangs and uncompromising forcefulness.

    source

    Everyone here who’s saying THEY would speak up and do the right thing no matter the consequences? They’re more likely than most to be right. This community’s been arguing for months or years about rape culture, critical thinking, implicit bias and the importance of loud uncompromising dissent. We KNOW about sex crimes, institutional arrogance and cultural denial. We’ve seen this dance before and we’ve got experience in calling it out, no matter who the target is. And we will, because that’s part of our identity, too. We’re part of the Horde. That’s what we value. That’s what we do.

  93. Dave says

    Ugh. I hate comedy central and their dumb region locks. Can anyone provide an alt link for non us users?

  94. says

    Most of the coverage in the sports media that I’ve seen and read is getting it right, calling out the students and Paterno for forgetting who the real victims are. Somebody on the football pre-game show this morning (I think it was Tim Brando) made a nice statement about “replacing morality with loyalty to a brand.” That’s a message the Catholic church needs to take to heart.

  95. tushcloots says

    Fuck! I’ve read up to ~ #70 and blah blah about whether anyone was man enought to stop the shower scene.
    What about the freak SANDUSKY still being allowed to coach/mentor little kids, just not on Penn campus?!
    They sanctioned continued rape! They should all be charged as accessories, FFS
    Read this for an eye opener, there’s cops and a D.A. that covered this pukiness up:
    SCANDAL’S LONG HISTORY

    15 ADULTS WHO KNEW ABOUT ALLEGATIONS OF SANDUSKY’S BEHAVIOR BEFORE THE ARREST:

    First accusation against Penn State assistant coach was in 1998
    Jerry Sandusky worked for Penn State for 32 years as an assistant coach and defensive coordinator. He is charged with sexually abusing eight boys, whom he recruited through his charity for troubled boys, The Second Mile, from 1994 to 2009.
    [….

  96. tushcloots says

    This is good:

    These things should be simple:

    1. When, as an adult, you come come across another adult raping a small child, you should a) do everything in your power to rescue that child from the rapist, b) call the police the moment it is practicable.

    2. If your adult son calls you to tell you that he just saw another adult raping a small child, but then left that small child with the rapist, and then asks you what he should do, you should a) tell him to get off the phone with you and call the police immediately, b) call the police yourself and make a report, c) at the appropriate time in the future ask your adult son why the fuck he did not try to save that kid.
    etc…

    I’m still trying to remember the link to their(Penn State Students) Facebook page, but not only are many of them blinkered freaks, they never studied English, either. Those were the JoPa supporters. It look’s like most students and UP are raising funds for abused kids charities, and holding candle light vigils tonight.

    Facebook Penn Staters have now raised more than $270,000 for RAINN to support victims of abuse. Join in the effort and help surpass $500,000: http://goo.gl/Ka9kj

    #ProudPSUforRAINN | RAINN | Rape, Abuse and Incest National Network
    rainn.org
    In the wake of the recent events at Penn State University, a grassroots network of PSU alumni are standing up for victims of sexual abuse by supporting RAINN’s effort to prevent and treat victims of sexual abuse. We have joined together to mobilize the Penn State fan base – alumni, students, parents…

  97. NancyNew says

    There’s a little sophistry I’m tired of hearing in this situation… the “Who could have ever imagined something like this could have happened in athletics?” line. Now, I can see how people could have blinders to a specific location/situation (how did this happen here?), but sports in general?

    That is TOTAL bull.

    There have been TONS of sexual abuse scandals from coaches or those associated with teams, on every level.

    It goes hand-in-hand with the “yeah, he’s a horrible human being, but he’s a great player, so it’s ok” crap.

  98. L.Minnik says

    PA is one of six states that permits reporting of such actions via internal hierachy.

    Ok, but what’s the point of such a law regarding child abuse? Why report it to the one’s superior if the superior will need to contact the police and the witness will have to testify anyway? This law is only good for issues that can possibly be resolved within an institution without police involvement.
    The police must be involved in the case of the sexual abuse of a child because: only the police can lead a successful investigation which could lead to a conviction, which unqualified persons cannot; the perpetrator may be abusing other children at the time or in the future and it is important to keep all official records of what allegedly happened in one place; the child should get access to appropriate therapy.
    It seems that this law only allows to skirt police involvement, as the superior does not necessarily need to be informed asap, and child sexual abuse is never an ‘internal matter’.

  99. BCPA_Lady (now from MN!) says

    christinamorris @ 39

    That that “gentleman” is the “the living breathing embodiment of the rightness of Pennsylvania small town/rural life” to me says a lot. Either A. he’s not, or B. stay away from rural Pennsylvania.

    Well…yes, but it’s not just rural PA. Small town/rural life anywhere equals a “see no evil, hear no evil” attitude when it comes to the well-known, highly respected members of the community. It couldn’t be our priest/minister/pastor, the owner of the car dealership, the choir teacher, the Emergency Management Agency head — they’re such good people and have done so much for the community.

    Victims’ accusations, especially if they’re “disadvantaged,” are greeted with “they’re lying” or if their identity becomes known (which it does, because small towns=gossip) then their entire family history becomes grounds for blaming them or dismissing/diminishing the perpetrator’s actions.

  100. Pteryxx says

    Well…yes, but it’s not just rural PA. Small town/rural life anywhere equals a “see no evil, hear no evil” attitude when it comes to the well-known, highly respected members of the community.

    Not to mention the “close ranks against the outsiders” attitude, blaming everything on the media/internet/troublemakers for bringing it up in the first place.

    Someone I know works in Pennsylvania and has to keep silent all day listening to customers defending Paterno and blaming the victims… “those little shitheads should have kept their mouths shut” was one choice phrase.

    Via Rick Reilly’s article (link), I found out that NHL stars Theo Fleury and Sheldon Kennedy have made statements as survivors themselves. They were both assaulted by a junior hockey coach. I bet that apologist asshole would shut up about “little shitheads” with a pro athlete survivor staring him in the face.

  101. michelle says

    @66 “As I understand it people learn this kind of behavior by themselves having been victimized . Not that all victims will go on to be victimizers but most victimizers were themselves victims.”

    I don’t know the statistics for adult offenders, but that just isn’t true for children who are offenders. My husband works at a group home that TRIES (97% recidivism rate) to correct the behavior. Some of the kids were victims, but for the most part they weren’t. The primary common thread is that many of the kids grew up in homes where they were exposed to sex and sexual themes (tv, dirty mags, very sexually active parents who did’t bother hiding it from the kids) AND a lack of positive attention or affection from the parental figures. Hence, they know about sex but not age appropriate ways to be affectionate, it makes them feel good, so they think it is okay to behave sexually as a way to connect to other children. Unfortunately, it messes things up in their heads and many of them continue to like children even after they are no longer children themselves. All that said, some of them grew up in perfectly normal households with caring parents and still end up doing this kind of stuff.

  102. Basti2682 says

    Seeing john with a serious face at the last part drives a hard nail how messed up the situation is.

  103. Randomien says

    Joe Paterno has long been part of the problem when it comes to rape culture. In 2006, the National Organization for Women called for his resignation, because of this:

    In 2006, on the eve of the Orange Bowl, Paterno had this to say about a Florida State linebacker named A. J. Nicholson who had been accused of sexually assaulting a woman: “There’s so many people gravitating to these kids. He may not have even known what he was getting into, Nicholson. They knock on the door; somebody may knock on the door; a cute girl knocks on the door. What do you do?”

    And even earlier on:

    In late 2002, Penn State cornerback Anwar Phillips was accused by a classmate of sexual assault, and the university suspended him for two semesters. But before his suspension began, the Nittany Lions were to play Auburn in the middle of January in the Capital One Bowl. Paterno put Phillips in uniform.

    Source.