Catholic Memorial athlete Armani Reeves told ESPNBoston.com earlier tonight he is "100 percent" committed to Penn State in light of the recent disturbing news over the weekend regarding criminal charges against a former coach.
Reeves declined further comment.
Former Nittany Lions defensive coordinator Jerry Sandusky was charged with 40 criminal counts stemming from numerous alleged sexual assaults of boys over a 15-year period. Penn State athletic director Tim Curley and Gary Schultz, vice president for finance and business, were both charged with perjury and failing to report what they knew about Sandusky's behavior to authorities, and both men stepped down late Sunday after an emergency meeting of the university's board of trustees.
Earlier today, both Reeves and his Penn State-bound teammate Cam Williams spoke with ESPN's Jared Shanker and were affirmative in their commitment to the Lions. The full article can be viewed here, and is excerpted below:
West Roxbury (Mass.) Catholic Memorial four-star athlete Armani Reeves is troubled and disappointed with the news coming out of Penn State, but that doesn't mean he is wavering on his commitment.
"You don't want anything like that to happen no matter who they are or what the situations is," Reeves said. "As far as my decision of staying there, it doesn't affect me at all. You just wish something like that wouldn't happen to kids like that."
Reeves said it would take wholesale changes among the Penn State coaching staff to cause him to reconsider his commitment. If Paterno leaves for any reason, Reeves said he would still be solid. If the rest of the staff is also forced out or a new coach doesn't retain them -- the likely scenario -- Reeves could open things back up.
"Definitely," Reeves said when asked if he would be forced to reconsider if assistant coach Bill Kenney, his lead recruiter, was let go.
For now, Reeves said he and his parents are on the same page. Unless there are changes to the 10-person coaching staff, Reeves doesn't feel he is taking any risks by sticking with his commitment since it isn't an NCAA issue.
"It won't affect my time there as far as playing football and schoolwise," he said.
The fact that a grand jury said Paterno did his job by giving the information he received regarding Sandusky's behavior to administrators has helped alleviate Reeves' teammate and three-star linebacker Camren Williams' concerns about his commitment to Penn State.
"It was the old coach and Coach Paterno actually turned him in to the athletic director," Williams said. "He did his job. It's the AD under investigation for lying and not turning him in.
"I'm not concerned at all."
Williams has been committed to Penn State since March and is one of the Lions' most active supporters.
"I've always known [Paterno], since he started recruiting me, as doing everything the right way," Williams said. "That's the kind of coach Paterno is. He created the football program and such a prestigious place and 'Success with Honor.'"
Paterno's future as coach is always muddled -- usually because of age or health -- and Williams doesn't care if Paterno is the coach next year.
"I chose Penn State for so many reasons," Williams said. "That's a minor thing that doesn't affect me."
Williams talked about his relationships with assistants Ron Vanderlinden and Bill Kenney as being key in his commitment. Both were on staff in 2002, when another assistant said he witnessed Sandusky sexually assault a boy in the team's locker room shower. Williams said he did not think of that.
"I'm confident they didn't know about it," he said. "They're genuinely good people."
While Reeves is more cautious about the coaching staff leaving if Paterno leaves, Williams is confident the staff will remain in place.
"I know those coaches don't leave," Williams said. "They've had so much success there. They won't get rid of them. An internal person will step up [to head coach], like the defensive coordinator or one of those guys.
"If an outsider comes, he'll keep the same position coaches. That's my view on it."