A Philadelphia Inquirer report indicates a settlement may be in the works between the NCAA, Penn State and two state officials who are challenging the 2012 consent decree that allowed sanctions against the university and the football program.
Senator Jake Corman and Treasurer Rob McCord filed the civil suit against the NCAA, saying the governing body of collegiate athletics overstepped its bounds in imposing the sanctions, which included a loss of football scholarships, a bowl ban, a $60 million fine and the stripping of 111 Penn State wins under Joe Paterno.
According to the Inquirer, sources said the terms being discussed include a provision under which Penn State would acknowledge that the NCAA had the right to impose the sanctions. In return, the late coach’s vacated wins would be reinstated and money from the fine would stay in Pennsylvania, earmarked for child protection.
Former Penn State players reacted Tuesday. Seattle Seahawks defensive tackle Jordan Hill spoke with abc27 via phone:
“Getting the wins restored to Joe would be great on several levels. First, it would support how much hard work Joe and his staff put in,” Hill said. “Second, it would give back all of my teammates and lettermen who came before me the wins they deserve, and it would be nice if I had more than eight wins in my career.”
Former Penn State and NFL tight end Mickey Shuler of Enola said settling the lawsuit is taking an easy way out for Penn State’s executive board.
“(Paterno) was a great coach. He won a lot of games. Taking them away is not a big deal. Giving them back is not a big deal,” Shuler said. “But to use it as part of a chess match so that you’ll be seen giving it back and making us feel happy and making us feel whole — the only thing it’s going to make us feel whole is to find the truth.”
The lawsuit is scheduled for trial next month.