Posts tagged ‘Tim Curley’
For months, Penn Staters have been wondering whether former president Graham Spanier would ever be charged in connection with the Sandusky scandal. That question was answered Thursday, as state attorney general Linda Kelly announced that Spanier, Tim Curley ’76, ’78g, and Gary Schultz ’71, ’75g had engaged in a “conspiracy of silence” to cover up allegations of child sexual abuse against Jerry Sandusky ’66, ’71g.
The attorney general added charges against Curley and Schultz, and now all three men are facing five charges: perjury, obstruction of justice, endangering the welfare of children, criminal conspiracy, and failure to report suspected child abuse.
“This was not a mistake by these men,” Kelly said during a news conference that started at noon. “It was not an oversight. It was not misjudgment on their part. This was a conspiracy of silence by top officials, working to actively conceal the truth, with total disregard for the children who were Sandusky’s victims.”
The university put Spanier, still a tenured professor who had been on sabbatical, on administrative leave; you can read the official statement by clicking here.
Spanier’s lawyers responded by calling the charges politically motivated and the timing—just five days before the election—suspect. Their statement, which you can read by clicking here, says in part: “The people of this Commonwealth, and the next Attorney General, should be outraged by this blatantly political, transparently vindictive, last-minute act of cowardice and desperation.”
Curley and Schultz are scheduled to be arraigned at 2 p.m. Friday in Harrisburg; Spanier’s arraignment is scheduled for 9:30 a.m. Wednesday, Nov. 7.
Lori Shontz, senior editor
Of all the answers former FBI director Louis Freeh gave today after the release of his group’s 267-page report on the Sandusky scandal, this might have been the most blunt. The report’s findings center on a Penn State leadership culture devoid of accountability at the highest level, in which a handful of men—Graham Spanier, Tim Curley ’76, ’78g, Gary Schultz ’71, ’75g, and Joe Paterno—failed in their responsibility to expose a serial pedophile. Their motivation, in Freeh’s words, was “avoiding the consequences of bad publicity.”
The Board of Trustees is cited as well for a failure to press for answers and hold the university’s administration accountable. The picture presented is clear: Jerry Sandusky ’66, ’71g was the monster in all this, but he was enabled, directly or not, by many others who had the power to stop him.
On Thursday, as throughout the scandal, much of the attention focused on Paterno’s accountability. On this, Freeh was careful but direct. “We have a great deal of respect for Mr. Paterno, and condolences for his family on their loss. He’s a person with a great legacy, terrific legacy… he, as someone once said, made perhaps the worst mistake of his life. We’re not singling him out. We’re putting him in a category of three other people who were major leaders of Penn State. He was also a major leader of Penn State. The facts are the facts… There’s a whole bunch of evidence here. We’re saying he was a major part of an active attempt to conceal… I regret that. But what my report says is what the evidence and the facts show. We laid that out as fairly and clearly as we can.”
The reactions from elsewhere in the Penn State community followed later in the day. Late Thursday morning, the Paterno family released a statement that defended its patriarch. “The idea that any sane, responsible adult would knowingly cover up for a child predator is impossible to accept,” it reads. “The far more realistic conclusion is that many people didn’t fully understand what was happening and underestimated or misinterpreted events.”
The family statement goes on: “Joe Paterno wasn’t perfect. He made mistakes and he regretted them. He is still the only leader to step forward and say that with the benefit of hindsight he wished he had done more. To think, however, that he would have protected Jerry Sandusky to avoid bad publicity is simply not realistic.”
Penn State president Rod Erickson and the university trustees met the media in Scranton in mid-afternoon. Board chair Karen Peetz ’77 and Ken Frazier ’75, who led the board’s investigative panel, both emphasized the trustees’ collective accountability in the scandal. Said Frazier, “We, the Penn State Board of Trustees, failed to provide proper oversight for the university’s operations.” Peetz echoed that statement, but said no trustees planned to resign, focusing on the acknowledgment of culpability as the first step in moving forward.
Both Peetz and Frazier addressed Paterno, commending his accomplishments and his massive positive impact on the university. But Peetz also acknowledged the “clarity that comes out of that report, that shows 61 years of excellent service to the university is now marred.”
The Board’s official statement on the Freeh Report, including details of action already taken and future plans, can be found here.
The public response to the report was immediate and harsh, much of it damning of Paterno and demanding NCAA sanctions against the Penn State football program. In Oregon, Nike announced that Paterno’s name would no longer adorn the childcare center at its headquarters. Phil Knight, the Nike founder and longtime Paterno family friend, said in a statement, “According to the investigation, it appears Joe made missteps that led to heartbreaking consequences. I missed that Joe missed it, and I am extremely saddened on this day. My love for Joe and his family remains.”
Ryan Jones, senior editor
The ongoing series of events here at Penn State took yet another turn this afternoon with the revelation that athletic director Tim Curley ’76, ’78g, currently on administrative leave, has lung cancer.
The Harrisburg Patriot-News has the story here. Tim’s wife, Melinda ’77, made a statement to that paper confirming that he had part of a lung removed in 2010. “This is a personal and private matter that has affected our family since June 2010,” the statement said. “He has not required chemotherapy or radiation, however, doctors continue to monitor his condition.”
Melinda Curley’s statement also said: “During this difficult time, Tim did not want his health to be a distraction and has been dealing with this privately.”
Former football coach Joe Paterno also has been fighting what his family calls a treatable form of lung cancer that was diagnosed in November.
Lung cancer is a tough one. Our best wishes to both Tim and Joe.
Tina Hay, editor
Several of us on the magazine staff just spent most of our Friday editing page proofs for the January-February issue while keeping a constant eye on Twitter.
Twitter was pretty much the only way to follow, in real time, today’s preliminary hearing for Tim Curley ’76, ’78g and Gary Schultz ’71, ’75g, who face charges of perjury and failure-to-report in connection with the child-sex-abuse case against former Nittany Lion defensive coordinator Jerry Sandusky ’66, ’71g.
Farrell: Give me an accurate height of the boy. McQueary: I would need a measuring tape for that, sir. (@annaorso)
A district magisterial judge in Harrisburg listened to 4-1/2 hours’ worth of testimony today, then ruled that there’s enough evidence to send both Curley (the Penn State athletic director, currently on administrative leave) and Schultz (now-retired VP for finance and administration) to trial on the charges.
Many of the reporters who attended the hearing in the Dauphin County Courthouse were tweeting constantly from the proceedings, and the result was a virtual play-by-play of the testimony. Through their tweets—easily numbering in the hundreds—we essentially watched as a series of five witnesses (more…)
“My mission here has begun,” said Joyner ’72, ’76g. “I’m gonna align our core values in intercollegiate athletics with the rest of the academic units. We have a noble purpose here at the University, and it doesn’t just stop in the classroom. It continues onto the athletic fields, which in my opinion are just another classroom where young people learn to be successful.
“Given that, I consider myself the dean of the ‘College of Intercollegiate Athletics.’”
At that point, he said he’d take questions, which was about the only moment of the morning that was typical.
The news conference was held in cavernous Schwab Auditorium, with ushers checking ID at the door and smooth jazz playing at a high volume before and after Joyner spoke. Field hockey coach Char Morett ’79 H&HD introduced Joyner ’72, ’76g reading his bio and ending by noting that she had known him for 25 years, through their Penn State and Olympic connections. (Joyner, an orthopedic surgeon, has been active in the United States Olympic Committee.) Only a handful of the regulars who cover Penn State football and athletics attended; the rest were on their way to Columbus for Saturday’s football game. (And there was no telephone hookup, so they could not call in to ask questions.)
So most of the questions were asked by national media, many of them investigative reporters. They were not (more…)
After a night of wandering downtown State College and campus, sadly reporting on the riots that followed the firing of Joe Paterno (the resignation of president Graham Spanier didn’t seem to be on anyone’s mind), I got up this morning, and I went to class.
Mike Poorman ’82 developed and teaches COMM 497G, “Joe Paterno: Communications and the Media,” and this semester’s section conveniently meets Thursday mornings at 9:45. I sat in the back row, a few seats a way from a couple of current football players who are enrolled in the class, and listened to two of sports journalism’s best, Joe Posnanski of Sports Illustrated and Pat Forde of Yahoo Sports, speak about how the media has covered the sexual abuse charges against former assistant coach Jerry Sandusky ’66, ’71g, the perjury charges against athletic director Tim Curley ’76, ’78g and acting vice president Gary Schultz ’71, ’75g, and the ensuing events.
Said Posnanski, who’s been living in town to write a biography of Paterno, “I’ve never been around a story that has changed as fast as this one.”
Said Forde, who parachuted in after the LSU–Alabama game last weekend to jump on the story, “I packed for two days and this is Day 4, with Days 5 and 6 to come. I might be running around here in gym shorts soon.”
The students asked good questions, including (more…)
Those of us on the magazine staff—and most likely anyone who attended, works for, or in any way cares about Penn State—were stunned and saddened to hear the news involving charges of child sexual assault against former football defensive coordinator Jerry Sandusky ’66, ’71g, as well as charges of perjury and failure-to-report against athletic director Tim Curley ’76, ’78g and vice president Gary Schultz ’71, ’75g.
Like so many others, I find the story to be distressing on so many levels. The allegations alone are disturbing, to say the least. It’s also upsetting to see the things that are being said in the media and on the Internet about my alma mater—an institution that I’ve been a part of for more than 30 years now. It’s a rough time to be a Penn Stater.
On the other hand, I think it’s useful to remember that this is just the beginning of a long process, one that will allow the defendants their day in court. A grand jury presents only the prosecution’s side of the story. And none of us has all the facts. So I’m thinking it’s best not to (more…)
So when athletic director Tim Curley said of new men’s basketball coach Patrick Chambers, “There will be no one better at promoting, marketing, and selling the Penn State basketball program 24/7, 365,” he wasn’t just delivering a throwaway line.
Chambers is a guy whose sales experience goes beyond recruiting basketball players. He majored in marketing at Philadelphia University and began his professional life as a copier salesman.
“Bottom of the barrel,” he said Monday afternoon, not long after he (more…)
Eleven days after Ed DeChellis ’82 abruptly stepped down as Penn State’s men’s basketball coach, Penn State has named his replacement: Boston University head coach Pat Chambers. He’ll be introduced at a news conference at University Park on Monday afternoon.
Chambers was at BU just two years, but posted two 21-win seasons and took the Terriers to the NCAA tournament in just his second year (though the Boston Globe couldn’t resist pointing out that he did it largely with the players he inherited from the previous coach, Dennis Wolff).
Before BU—and this is the part that many Penn State fans find appealing—he spent five seasons as an assistant under Jay Wright at Villanova. The Wildcats went to the Sweet Sixteen in four of those five seasons, including their Final Four appearance in 2009.
Penn State athletic director Tim Curley ’76, ’78g surely found Chambers’ Philly-area recruiting ties appealing. Besides his stint at Villanova, Chambers also grew up in the Philly area and played at Philadelphia University under Herb Magee, who was just named to the Hall of Fame this year.
Dave Jones of the Harrisburg Patriot-News, often a harsh critic of the Penn State program, thinks Chambers has a chance to be the kind of recruiting salesman that Penn State badly needs.
ESPN’s Dana O’Neil ’90 is even more enthusiastic: “Penn State finally breathed life into a program that, for years, has reeked of mothballs,” she writes. “Bruce Parkhill begat Jerry Dunn begat Ed DeChellis, all decent coaches, all good men and all who moved the energy meter about an eighth of an inch every five years.” Chambers, by contrast, “is the typical kid from a big Irish family (12 kids in all), who is used to living large and loud and who has a fire and intensity that borders on manic.”
For an interesting profile of Chambers, check out this story from the Boston University website.
Tina Hay, editor
All I could think of Saturday night as I watched Cael Sanderson answer questions about guiding Penn State to its first NCAA team wrestling title in 58 years was a Washington Post account about him winning an Olympic gold medal in 2004, which I read while reporting a profile of him for our Sept./Oct. 2009 issue
The story described how he seemed ill at ease on the medal stand in Athens, and it included this great line from Sanderson, who had fidgeted and toyed with his laurel wreath: “I don’t do props.”
He didn’t want to do props Saturday night, either; he let the wrestlers parade the trophy around. But Sanderson was shy about taking credit, too. (more…)