Moving Forward, in Unity and Defiance

July 25, 2012 at 11:23 am 9 comments

It started quietly, with Bill O’Brien releasing a short statement Monday morning. He followed that Tuesday with a teleconference with local media in which he laid out his approach to dealing with the NCAA-imposed obstacles to on-field success: He will emphasize all that Penn State still has to offer—home games in front of 100,000-plus fans, facilities on par with any in the nation, a coaching staff that understands how to prepare prospects for a chance at the NFL. Already, he is pitching players and recruits—any of whom can leave for another program if they choose—on rising to the challenge. And, yes, he says he’s “committed for the long term.”

O’Brien’s media tour continued Wednesday with appearances on ESPN (this 15-minute interview is well worth watching), all leading up to his trip to Chicago for this week’s Big Ten media days. As he’s done almost without fail in his first seven months on the job, O’Brien continues to say all the right things. On Wednesday morning, he got some backing from his players, as a group of a few dozen, led by seniors and likely captains Michael Zordich and Michael Mauti, met the media to publicly state their unity and commitment to the program.

There’s no telling how many current and future Lions will be able to maintain such a fierce commitment over the next four years. But after another rough stretch of days in an ongoing saga, this is a promising sign.

Ryan Jones, senior editor

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Entry filed under: Bill O'Brien, Football, NCAA sanctions, Penn State football fans. Tags: , , , .

A Few Words From Ed Rendell … Trustees Meet To Discuss NCAA Sanctions

9 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Richard  |  July 25, 2012 at 11:29 am

    why, oh why, did our university unconditionaly accept and endorse the Freeh Report?

  • 2. Anonymous  |  July 25, 2012 at 11:35 am

    Any young man who has the courage and drive to put on the Penn State football uniform during these very difficult times deserves to play in front of a sell-out crowd. Here’s to hoping the current players and coaches get the support they truly deserve. I am sure that these Penn State players and coaches will be inspired by the courage that the victims of the abuse has displayed every day of their lives.

  • 3. Jeff  |  July 25, 2012 at 9:35 pm

    Agreed Richard on why accept the Freeh report? Having read it in full, it stitches together a narrative that may or may not be accurate. None of the principals quoted in the e mails were interviewed. More importantly, why accept NCAA sanctions? This is going to be going on for years. Accepting their sanctions will NOT speed up the healing process. Brent Musberger on ESPN today said NCAA way out of line for getting involved in a criminal matter, not an athletic matter. He smacked down the “institutional control” argument. So what if the NCAA threatened worse? Destroying the football program for a likely 10 years is as bad as it gets.

  • 4. R Thomas Berner  |  July 27, 2012 at 8:52 am

    I’m going to go out on a limb and predict that the NCAA will pull back on its decision. It might be for the wrong reasons, but you have to wonder if other schools aren’t looking at what happened to us and might question the NCAA.

  • 5. Tom  |  July 29, 2012 at 5:45 am

    Why haven’t all members of the Board of Trustees resigned? They clearly failed us in their obligation to investigate any charge of child sex abuse. Even if they didn’t know, they should have known, That’s the job of a trustee. Our school is better than this. We deserve better. We are Penn State.

  • [...] has promised—but it’s clear they will by opening day. Here’s Michael Mauti, emotional team leader and son of former Nittany Lion standout Rich Mauti ’89, on that still-sensitive [...]

  • 7. One Last, Emotional Saturday « The Penn Stater Magazine  |  November 21, 2012 at 1:44 pm

    [...] out its final season under unimaginable circumstances. All could have left before the season began; nearly all stayed. Simply by not going anywhere, they achieved something like legend status among Penn State fans. [...]

  • 8. A Lion for the Future « The Penn Stater Magazine  |  December 21, 2012 at 9:45 pm

    [...] Mauti was the emotional heart of the 2012 Penn State football team, a great player whose leadership helped keep the Nittany Lions together through a tumultuous summer and challenging fall. It’s impossible to find a direct parallel [...]

  • [...] starters, there’s the emphasis on loyalty—on sticking together and not running away from a challenge—that defined the Penn State football [...]

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