Monday, March 25, 2013
Emmert: PSU penalties likely will remain
By Adam Rittenberg
NCAA president Mark Emmert appeared earlier Monday on ESPN Radio's "Mike & Mike in the Morning" show and discussed several topics, including the Penn State case.
In recent months, the state of Pennsylvania and the NCAA both have filed lawsuits against one another, the family of the late Penn State football coach Joe Paterno has released its own report criticizing the university-commissioned investigation conducted by former FBI director Louis Freeh, and Penn State received a favorable progress report from independent athletics integrity monitor George Mitchell. The latest report from Mitchell prompted some, like ESPN.com's Gene Wojciechowski, to call for the NCAA to reduce penalties on Penn State's football program, which include a postseason ban for three more years and significant scholarship losses.
Not surprisingly, Emmert, who last summer made an unprecedented decision to impose the penalties without conducting a full investigation -- the NCAA used the Freeh Report in lieu of its own probe -- said it's unlikely the sanctions will be reduced.
"We're confident in the decisions that we made," Emmert told hosts Mike Greenberg and Mike Golic. "The facts were the facts, and we operated on those. I guess if somebody were to come forward with a whole new set of facts, that would change the world, but otherwise, we're comfortable with where we are and know that we did it the right way."
Emmert went on to praise Penn State for being "incredibly cooperative" and is showing great responsibility in "working on changes in their processes and culture."
He couldn't comment on the pending lawsuits but said the NCAA is confident in its position and that he and the NCAA's executive committee assessed Penn State's case with "much greater deliberateness than the world thinks."
You can listen to the entire Emmert interview here (he begins discussing Penn State around the 5-minute mark).