Thursday, September 25

Frazier, Tomalis Received Updates About OAG Investigation of Spanier, Curley, and Schultz

Email reveals that Frazier and Tomalis were privy to PA OAG's "flip" strategy for Curley, Schultz, and Spanier.

By
Ray Blehar

In a document dated 31 January 2012, which was obtained via my investigation in November 2012, lead prosecutor Frank Fina had informed PSU officials that he "expected C & S to flip."  As my blog post on 18 August revealed, the Sandusky trial transcripts indicated that the ultimate target of the OAG was Graham Spanier.

E-mails obtained by Ryan Bagwell through his RTKL efforts, provide more evidence that members of the PSU Board of Trustees -- and specifically Special Investigations Task Force Co-chairs -- Kenneth Frazier and Ronald Tomalis were included in the group who were being updated by the OAG.   E-mails also reveal that the Freeh group received an update on the OAG's impending announcement of the Spanier charges.

The June 3, 2012 e-mail below indicates that Schultz had decided not to "cooperate."  In other words, he had turned down a deal to "flip" on Spanier.




While some may argue that this email is discussing participation in the Freeh (fake) investigation, logic and evidence proves that was not the case.  With Curley and Schultz facing charges, it was well established that they could not speak about anything pertaining to the case, thus wouldn't be considered as individuals to be interviewed by the Freeh group.  Spanier, on the other hand, had reached out to the Freeh group at the beginning of the "investigation" and offered to meet with them several times.

From ESPN:

"Since November of last year, when he resigned his presidency, he has wanted the Freeh Group to create an accurate report and has been determined to assist in any way he can," said the statement from Spanier's lawyers. They ended their four-paragraph statement by saying they remained "hopeful that truth and reason prevail."

This email erases any thought that the investigation conducted at Penn State was conducted "independently" and "in parallel" to the OAG's.  Clearly, the SITF co-chairs were being kept informed of the progress of the OAG investigation.

But what about the Freeh group?  Were they too being kept abreast of the OAG investigation's progress?

Freeh Group Informed of Pending Spanier Charges

On October 31, 2012, the day before the Conspiracy of Silence presentment was released, Frank Fina called Greg Paw of the Freeh group to inform him of the pending charges.  Paw emailed Fina back and asked if it could wait until the next day (Thursday, November 1st) or Friday?

Obviously, it couldn't wait because by the next day, the information that Fina was going to tell Paw would have been all over the news.  Thus, Fina requested that he "call quick now?"


The Conspiracy of Silence presentment is referred to as the Freeh Report-Lite in some circles because it appears to utilize much of the same language and content from the Freeh Report. Other emails after the Sandusky conviction and the release of the Freeh Report revealed the cooperation between the Freeh group and the OAG (reported here by Ryan Bagwell).  There is little doubt that the November 1st report was a collaborative effort by the Freeh team and the OAG.

The October 31st email revealed that the OAG maintained contact with the Freeh Group at least until Spanier was charged and additional charges were filed against Curley and Schultz.  Fina's rather urgent message to Paw, as well as the other Bagwell emails,  reveal that the two entities had formed a bond of sorts during their work together.

This email also raises the possibility that the Freeh group was billing Penn State for work outside the scope of the contract.  While the final cost of the Freeh "investigation" and report was a little over $8.1 million, additional billings were received from Freeh, Sporkin, and Sullivan (FSS) after the completion of the "investigation."  One has to wonder what exactly were the nature of these billings.

Perhaps someone on the BOT might request an audit?

Emails Prove Freeh Caught In Another Lie

The evidence reveals that Louis Freeh has been caught in another lie regarding the independence of his "investigation" at Penn State.

From his press conference transcript:

While independent, our work was done in parallel with several other active investigations by agencies and governmental authorities, including the Pennsylvania Attorney General, Pennsylvania State Police, United States Attorney, Federal Bureau of Investigation, and U.S. Department of Education. We continuously interfaced and cooperated with those agencies and authorities. We also received assistance from the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children (NCMEC). As promised, we immediately turned over any relevant evidence we found to these authorities, such as the critical February 27, 2001 emails between Messrs. Spanier, Schultz and Curley. 

Previously, evidence from the Moulton report and judicial proceedings revealed he lied about his team's "independent discovery" of the email evidence.  Moulton's report (page 158) revealed the emails were turned over to the Pennsylvania State Police on July 7, 2011.   Thus, the situation was the exact opposite of the situation stated by Freeh -- he didn't turn over evidence to the authorities; the OAG turned evidence over to him (or used the PSU legal counsel and/or the SITF as an intermediary).

Conclusion


Louis Freeh and FSS did not conduct a full, fair, and independent "investigation" of Sandusky's crimes occurring at Penn State.  The evidence uncovered so far indicates that Freeh investigation was little more than a public relations ploy to provide the appearance of an "independent" investigation.

The majority of people, especially the media, were taken in by the ruse.  However, at least one media member was not.   Snigdha Prakash, wrote in Slate magazine, that the selection of Frazier to lead the SITF would result in a cover-up.

























Prakash was right about a cover-up, but missed on figuring out what would be covered up.  It was not PSU's role in the Sandusky scandal, but rather the Commonwealth's failure to take Sandusky off the streets in 1998.

Freeh's team was complicit in that cover-up.



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Tuesday, September 23

Barry Fenchak: CDT Op-Ed - Hold Trustees Accountable

Their View | Accountability needed on Penn State board of trustees

By Barry Fenchak
22 September 2014

Two years ago, then-Penn State board of trustees chairwoman Karen Peetz said that by 2014, all of the issues the university faced then would be a distant memory.

But the issues we face are not a memory, because they are far more impactful than short-term issues such as whether or not the football team goes to a bowl game. The issues are even more important than the tens of millions of dollars squandered due to the fiduciary negligence of this board's leadership.

The overriding issue is the genesis of most of the divisiveness of the last 34 months: The utter lack of accountability of the majority of the board.

With alumni trustees, the accountability process is clear. Trustees are elected in a democratic "one-man, one-vote" process in which all alumni are enfranchised. If it is felt that those trustees are not serving the best interests of the community, they may be removed.

Governor-appointed trustees and the voting ex-officio trustees are selected by the governor. Their accountability is to the governor, not to the stakeholders of the university.

Agriculture trustees are selected by delegates from "agricultural societies" throughout the commonwealth (a maximum of three delegates from each of Pennsylvania's 67 counties). There are several qualification parameters a society must meet to have delegates recognized at the election, and all delegates are required to be registered at the election. To ensure the validity of the election, there must be a proper vetting of the agricultural societies that had delegates recognized at the election. So, exactly which agricultural societies had delegates at the last election? This information has been repeatedly requested from the board of directors office, which has refused to provide this information.

Why is this information kept secret from the stakeholders (and even the other members of the board)? Based on the recent history of board leadership, the most logical reason may be that the board leaders know those delegates were not properly vetted, and the entire election process was invalid (the results of the most recent election are being contested in the state courts).

Historically, the business and industry trustees were selected in a process similar to the agricultural trustees - by delegates of business and industry interests. In 2002, a committee chaired by former board of trustees chairwoman Cynthia Baldwin recommended the process be changed. The implemented changes now allow for a five-member panel of existing board members (at least three of whom must be existing business and industry trustees) to select a candidate for those open chairs. Again, these trustees have zero accountability to the stakeholders of the university.

Are the appointed - not elected - board members serving the interests of the university? Recent non-elected appointments to the board include:

Todd Rucci: Appointed to the board by Gov. Tom Corbett in 2014. In 2011, Rucci was appointed by Corbett to the position of executive director of the Pennsylvania State Lottery at an annual salary of $136,000. In 2013, Rucci left the PA Lottery to take a position as government relations officer with PAP Technologies. PAP Technologies is a subcontractor of Scientific Games International, which has two contracts with the Department of Revenue to provide instant games and online lottery services. In fiscal year 2012-13, the state paid Scientific Games $62.3 million. Whose interests do we believe Rucci will protect: Penn State's or Corbett's?

Richard Dandrea: Appointed to the board by the five-member panel for business and industry trustees in 2013 and then placed on the exclusive executive committee of the trustees. Dandrea - an attorney - is a colleague of Katie Surma. Katie is the daughter of Vic Surma, and niece of former board of trustees vice chairman John Surma (former CEO of U.S. Steel). Dandrea's law office is in the U.S. Steel building in Pittsburgh. Dandrea was placed on the board by Ken Frazier and former trustees chairman James Broadhurst - other non-elected, non-accountable board members. And now Dandrea, in the ultimate act of hubris and gall, proposes that elected, accountable trustees are over-represented, and their numbers should be reduced. Whose interests do we think Dandrea is protecting: Penn State's, or the "old guard" of the trustees?

The presence of these conflicts become a non-issue if the board members are accountable. Unfortunately, no matter how strongly the Penn State stakeholders may distrust the non-accountable trustees, the trustees are just that, non-accountable. Would any of the non-elected trustees be selected and retained by a broad-based vote of the university's stakeholders? Keeping in mind that over the last 34 months, the only nine trustee seats that are subject to accountability have come up for election. None of those trustees were retained, and none of the votes were close. I think the answer to the question is that it would be highly unlikely that any of the non-elected trustees would be retained.

Before we can "move on" to tackling the myriad challenges facing Penn State, we must have an accountable governance board in place. Without accountability, we cannot begin to effectively address the issue of ensuring a Penn State education remains within the financial resources of Pennsylvania's young men and women. Without accountability, we cannot effectively develop solutions to the budgetary constraints we face in a time of increasing costs coupled with declining public support.

Penn Staters are a special breed, and we will not condone those who prostitute the legacy and the reputation our university. Penn Staters love our university too much to give in to tyrants.

Barry Fenchak is a Penn State graduate and finance instructor at the university

Thursday, September 18

Frazier, Tomalis & OAG instrumental in authoring the Freeh Report

Email and other evidence indicates that the Special Investigations Task Force and the PA OAG had a key roles in crafting the so-called Freeh Report

By
Ray Blehar

As I wrote on September 1st of this year, former PSU President Erickson's five-point promise provided the outline or template for the Freeh Report and the NCAA Consent Decree.  It was released to the public on November 11th -- just days after PSU BOT Co-chair John Surma failed to provide any real answers to questions about the firing of Paterno and Spanier.   

John Surma: Short on the facts
Surma often stated that the Board didn't have all the facts or was waiting for additional facts to come out.  So, the question is: what was learned in just two days that provided Erickson with so much "wisdom" to write the five-point promise?  

The Special Investigations Task Force was established the same day as the five-point promise but had not yet identified its members (done on Nov. 17th) nor named Louis Freeh as the (phony) investigator (done on Nov. 21st).   

I ask again, how was it possible for Erickson to come to the conclusion that PSU needed to "reorient our culture?"  I suspect that gem was put into his ear by Kenneth Frazier.

Frazier, Tomalis, and Freeh

Certainly, as the best and brightest lawyer on the Board, Kenneth Frazier, knew and understood that a grand jury presentment was little more than a one-sided prosecutorial document that was not to be taken at face value.  However, his comments to the New York Times revealed that he either forgot all his legal training (and how a "corporate officer" should act) or he is a hypocrite and a rat who was in on the scapegoating of Paterno, the PSU Three, and PSU athletics. 

Frazier's hypocrisy about protecting
children was exposed in March 2013
“To me, it wasn’t about guilt or innocence in a legal sense, it was about these norms of society that I’m talking about: that every adult has a responsibility for every other child in our community. And that we have a responsibility not to do the minimum, the legal requirement. We have a responsibility for ensuring that we can take every effort that’s within our power not only to prevent further harm to that child, but to every other child.” 


The takeaway was the Paterno, and by extension Penn State, had somehow violated the norms of society by doing exactly as they should have done in 2001 (according to the latest ruling by the NCAA).  Moreover, his sentiments about the protection of children were exposed as hypocritical in March 2013, when in an emotional meeting of the Board of Trustees, he excused the failures of the Department of Public Welfare (DPW) in not identifying Sandusky as a child molester in 1998.  

The very people who are trained to prevent harm to children were given a pass by Frazier -- just as they were given a pass in the Sandusky grand jury presentment (see page 18), and by Louis Freeh.

If you're smelling a rat, then your olfactory senses are working just fine.

In order to take the heat off of DPW for the 1998 failure, the Commonwealth needed to sensationalize the 2001 incident at Penn State.  The Frazier and Tomalis-led Special Investigations Task Force (SITF) went right along with their sham story of a reporting failure (by PSU) in 2001 that enabled Sandusky's abuse and chartered Louis Freeh to find the reasons for the failure (not if a failure occurred).   

No doubt, Governor Corbett was also pleased that Frazier and Tomalis had set the stage for Freeh (with the help and blessing of the PA OAG) to scapegoat PSU  for the DPW's failures:

Corbett: Praised Frazier, Tomalis, and
Freeh's roles in PSU  investigation
"Ah, let me talk about the Penn State investigation first.
I'm very pleased with Ken Frazier leading that. Ken – I've only known him a short time – but I'm very impressed with his leadership. I'm very impressed that he has put together some people, including Ron Tomalis, on behalf of the administration and also as [state] secretary of education, on that team, and the selection of Louis Freeh is I think a very good one. I'm sure most of you by now know the former director of the FBI and former federal judge Louis Freeh was appointed.
And I think one of the reasons that someone like Mr. Freeh was appointed is because he understands the role of a grand jury investigation, the role of the prosecutors and will work well with the attorney general's office and Attorney General Linda Kelly so that [obstruction of the attorney general's investigation] does not happen.

The Kangaroo court had been set up.  The outline (five-point promise) was written. The Sandusky grand jury presentment provided the background. Now it was time for the SITF (i.e., Frazier and Tomalis) to work with Freeh to fill in the supporting details of the Freeh Report.

"Final" Draft of Freeh Report Completed in March

Nearly all of the contents of the Freeh Report were in the possession of Penn State and the PA OAG's office when Freeh was hired.  The only notable exceptions were the personal files of Joe Paterno regarding Sandusky's retirement, information gathered via interviews by Freeh, and, perhaps, the Schultz file.  

The Schultz file may have been known to PSU prior to it being turned over to the OAG, given that Schultz informed Baldwin about his Sandusky-related notes on January 5, 2011.  Baldwin could have retrieved the notes from the office of then Senior VP for Business and Finance, Albert Horvath.

Evidence of the existence of a draft report (or at a minimum, draft findings) was revealed in heavily redacted email, dated March 13, 2012 from Omar McNeil of the Freeh Group to Frazier and Tomalis.  VP Tom Poole had written that he was ready to announce progress on Freeh's interim recommendations, but had reservations about the planned roll out.  





As a matter of procedure for investigative reports and other assessments, recommendations flow from findings.  Therefore, by March 2012, Freeh had "reasonably" concluded PSU officials had failed to report Sandusky's abuse based on the existence of recommendation #2 (below).

2. Prompt reporting of abuse and sexual misconduct. At regular intervals we will send the University community reminders, updates and notices to underscore the importance of reporting misconduct and identifying ways to report. This includes enhancing the visibility of the Office of Internal Audit's Ethics Hotline.

For the record, the other recommendations were: 1. Strengthening policies and programs involving minors;  3. Compliance with Clery Act's training and reporting requirements;  4. Administrative reforms; and   5. Athletic Department Security Arrangements

The Board announced the acceptance and the University's implementation of the interim recommendations on March 16, 2012.  Rod Erickson provided a prepared statement to the BOT, updating them on the Freeh investigation. 

Frazier characterized Erickson's statement as "perfunctory" (i.e., superficial) in a March 15, 2012 email to Omar McNeil and Ron Tomalis.  

At this point, the draft report apparently did not contain the email evidence that was used to "reasonably conclude" PSU officials had concealed Sandusky's abuse, however that doesn't rule out the draft report had concluded a cover-up by PSU officials.  Again, it had already concluded a failure to report the 2001 incident and likely implicated Paterno in the alleged failure (based on his grand jury testimony). 

March 19th, 2012 email indicates that the report was considered a final draft and that plans were being made for its impending release. 


The key points of the email are that the SITF and Board would review the report prior to release and then there would be no edits after release.  It's clear that the BOT stuck to the second part,  however, Freeh had to issue an errata to edit some (but certainly not all) of the mistakes in his report.  

At that point in March, the SITF and Freeh may have thought that the heavy lifting was done and that there was little to do but wait for the Sandusky trial verdicts and finalize the report.  

Perjury Particulars Cause SITF and Freeh To Revise Report

Analysis of the emails uncovered by Bill Cluck and Ryan Bagwell via their RTK requests to the PA Department of Education revealed that a flurry of activity between the OAG, the Freeh group, Frazier, and Tomalis occurred right after the PA OAG filed (on 30 March) the perjury particulars for Curley and Schultz.

On April 1st, 2012, Greg Paw of the Freeh Group wrote (to Frank Fina):

Frank--
When you have a chance, can you please send us copies of the responses you filed on Friday to the motions filed by Curley and Schultz? Thanks! 

Regards, 
Greg

From April 2nd to April 9th, arrangements were made for a briefing call of the SITF to likely discuss the impact of the perjury details to the draft report.  Analysis of the perjury particulars reveal that a number were based on evidence from the Schultz e-mails.  While the perjury issues had little effect on the report contents, the e-mails became an integral part of the report's faulty substantiation of Freeh's "reasonable conclusions."  

 Also, on April 12, Freeh informed the SITF that he had touched base with federal prosecutors.







If Freeh had actually discovered and turned over the emails on March 20, 2012, as he claimed, why did it take him until April 12 to notify the feds about their possible outcome?  Why was Greg Paw asking for filings that were publicly available?  

The answers to these questions appear to be just as I concluded nearly a year ago, Freeh conducted a phony investigation where he was fed information from the OAG and/or PSU.  In short, little to no investigating took place.

My blog post regarding evidence suppression revealed that the OAG was hesitant to release information that damaged their existing narrative of the Sandusky case.  Additionally, evidence uncovered in my investigation reveals that either PSU officials (i.e., Erickson, et al) did not share their knowledge about who had contemporaneous knowledge about 2001 or they did share it with Freeh but decided to omit it (as was done with other evidence in the case).

On April 27th, an email revealed Frazier and Tomalis had decided to discuss (off-line) their direction to Freeh about his "ultimate work product."

Investigation Wrapping Up?
After the burst of activity in early April, the SITF's activities took a more leisurely pace, with discussions about the Edelman presentations and information concerning governance consultant Dr. David Roselle.  An email from Ken Frazier to Louis Freeh revealed that Frazier told Dan McGinn that the "investigative phase" was wrapping up.




Sent from my iPhone 



On May 5, 2012, at 9:52 AM, "Frazier, Kenneth C." <ken frazierra>.merck.com> wrote: 



I would recommend waiting a few days to see if Wick calls. If he doesn't, j'd call him 

saying that I suggested that you reach out to him based on my conversation with 

McGinn. I would also let him know ( as I told McGinn) that you guys are wrapping up 

the investigative phase. If they have something to say they should speak up now.



In response to a heavily redacted email from Freeh, Frazier responded about his conversation with Dan McGinn and what "fixes" (likely edits to the report) were required.


From: Frazier, Kenneth C. <ken_frazier@merck.com> 
Sent: Saturday, May 05,201210:30 AM 
To: Louis Freeh 
Cc: Omar Y. McNeill; Tomalis, Ronald 
Subject: RE: Meeting with Dan McGinn 

Thanks, Louie. I told McGinn that your investigation would spare no individual in its pursuit of what happened and what "fixes" are required going forward.

However, just a day earlier, Frazier and Tomalis were exchanging emails that appeared to be confirming leaks (i.e., "that didn't take long") to the press by other trustees.  Frazier had misled the Board about the expected completion date of the Freeh Report and the status of the investigation -- which made their way into a media report.



































This email (and others) make it clear that Frazier and Tomalis were acting as the SITF and the others were on the investigative team in name only.

However, the plan for Freeh to wrap up his "investigation" and for the completion of the report would be thrown off again by another development in the case.

The Schultz File

The SITF and Freeh email exchanges activities picked up again in late May, likely due to Gary Schultz and Kimberly Belcher turning over the infamous Schultz "secret file."  




The Schultz file required the SITF and Freeh to make significant changes to the report to add context about the 1998 investigation of Sandusky and to include additional items in the Appendices.  As the emails reveal, the incorporation of the new information took considerable time.  Freeh received the Schultz file on May 1st and it appears discussions of the changes took place approximately three weeks later.

The discussions about what  to include from the Schultz file were likely difficult, as the file contained information related to at least a dozen signs of possible child sexual abuse that were uncovered in an investigation that cleared Sandusky.  I suspect that the sensationalism associated with the "Pandora's Box" notation likely won the day in terms of reward outweighing the risk.  Just to make sure the risk was reduced, poor quality copies of the notes were placed on their sides in the appendix to make it more difficult for readers to readily see the details of the handwritten notes.

All of this appeared to go on without the knowledge of the BOT and Edelman. 

Edelman was still under the belief the release of the report was imminent and had prepared questions for Freeh regarding his press conference and Peetz prepared an agenda (for May 20th)  to hear from them.  She also put a Freeh Report status update on the agenda.  

Prior to the meeting, Frazier emailed Tomalis about information received from the Freeh team. Tomalis followed up after the BOT conference call and appeared to compliment Frazier for his handling of the Freeh Report status discussion.  This email again shows how Frazier and Tomalis were keeping others in the dark about the alleged Freeh investigation and its progress.







Finalizing the Report and Readying for Release

After updating the report to include the new information by early June, Frazier and Tomalis discussed the change to the review process prompted by a request from PS4RS that asked the report be released without review.  


























This email preceded another flurry of emails on June 6 and 7 between the Freeh Group and the Core Team (i.e., Frazier, Tomalis), subjects "Core Team Questions Call" and "Checking In."  



These appear to be a final round of questions about the report prior to any updates resulting from the Sandusky trial.

On June 9th, Karen Peetz began crafting the agenda for a June 18th BOT meeting regarding 
the report's release.  
















Leaks and a Lie by PSU

Two days later, it appeared Frazier was tipped to the leaks of the emails to the press.  His email of June 11th shows that he expected the leaks to be discussed on the Today Show, which came to fruition soon afterward.

The leaked emails prompted PSU to make a public statement, which resulted in the University publishing a known falsehood the Freeh had discovered the emails and turned them over to the OAG.  This was proven not to be the case by the Moulton investigation, which revealed the Pennsylvania State Police received the "Penn State emails" on 7 July 2011, long before Freeh showed up on campus.



























"Concealing" Abuse and the "Paterno Hook"

The next day, June 12th, the Core Team exchanged emails about a philly.com article reporting on the leaks involving Paterno and potential charges for Spanier.  

In that exchange, Omar McNeil responded that the report was the first he'd seen in print or on TV.  That email appeared to prompt a response from OAG Supervisory Agent, Randy Feathers, who alerted Fina, then the Freeh group to a June 11th NBC video about the possible new charges.  NBC's Michael Isikoff cited "law enforcement" and "legal"sources informed the network of newly found (!?!) email evidence that indicated PSU officials "concealed" Sandusky's conduct and that the incident never got reported.  The report also mentioned he recovery of Courtney's billing record from 2001.

Concealed?  I wonder which "legal" source provided that information.

The emails regarding Paterno subject read: "today's philly inq has paterno hook."   The article stated:

 "the emails also indicated that the school's iconic football coach, Joe Paterno, had been consulted by one of the three men about the [2001] incident."

After BOT member Keith Masser made public statements that PSU officials were involved in a cover-up, received a call for his resignation from PS4RS, then apologized, Frazier's next move was to praise an ESPN article written by Howard Bryant regarding the excessive respect of icons.



















A July 3rd email from Frazier appeared to confirm that those involved with the OAG and the Freeh investigations were leaking information like a sieve.  The ESPN story referenced a PSU official who was briefed on the (Freeh) inquiry, who spoke on the condition of anonymity.

















Meanwhile, PSU officials made no statements condemning the leak, as had occurred after the emails were leaked to the media in June.

Freeh Report Published, Task Force Disbands
If there is one piece of evidence that reveals that the Frazier and Tomalis were involved in the authorship of the Freeh Report and had no other goal but to publish a final report, Frazier's email and Peetz's response makes that very clear. 






There is absolutely no intention of those involved on the SITF to review the Freeh Report for errors or to make corrections -- as would normally be done by any legitimate corporate board who received a report such as Freeh's.

However, this was really not Freeh's report -- it was mostly the work of Frazier and Tomalis. 

And because the SITF chairs wrote it, they believed it had to be unquestioningly correct.




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Monday, September 15

PS4RS Courtesy Announcement for Response to President Barron


DEADLINE TO AD YOUR NAME IS MIDNIGHT TUESDAY!!!


PS4RS is pleased to share the following information as a courtesy to our members.    

March 4 Truth’s  Request to President Barron
Last week, Dr. Barron opened the line of communication between the PSU leadership and the PSU family with his statement encouraging civility among the Penn State community. March4Truth.com (M4T)  is cordially asking him to maintain this respect, a core value of PSU, and grant our request of holding Louis Freeh to his promise to meet with PSU to discuss his report. 
M4T believes that discussion and debate on the merits of the report is long overdue and that PSU has suffered undue harm because the report was judged on the reputation of its author – and not on its contents.
Now, it is time for the author to answer serious questions about the report’s findings and shortcomings.

M4T is taking out a full page ad this Friday, September 19, 2014 You can read the letter to Dr. Barron at march4truth.com/events.html  You can also sign your name to be included as a supporter of the ad. The goal is 1000 names but certainly we can top that!

In fact, additional ad space will be purchased to make room for more names if needed.  So please, sign up today!

Thank you for your support!

Eileen Morgan & Ray 

Saturday, September 13

Emmert and the NCAA's Hypocrisy About Education and Protecting Children

For two years in a row, the NCAA's hypocrisy on its value of education and protecting children reared its head when it commented on the reductions to Penn State's sanctions.

By
Ray Blehar

If you give Mark Emmert a chance to speak, the chances are he will say something that exposes himself as a hypocrite.  That's probably why he didn't comment on the recent NCAA sanction reductions at Penn State.  However, let's turn back the clock and examine what Emmert had to say after the sanctions were reduced last fall.

"From the beginning, the goal of the Penn State sanctions and the Athletics Integrity Agreement has been to ensure that the university reinforces clear expectations and a daily mindset within athletics that the highest priority has to be placed on educating, nurturing and protecting young people, and to recognize the impact of the abuse on the lives of the victims in this case."



NCAA: Should be renamed
Not Credible Athletic Association
Rather than a statement from Emmert this year, the NCAA had its Executive Committee speak on its behalf and -- to no one's surprise -- they delivered the same hypocrisy as last year. 


“Penn State has made remarkable progress over the past year,” said Harris Pastides, Board member and University of South Carolina president. “The board members and I believe the Executive Committee’s decision is the right one. It allows both the university and the association to continue to move toward a common goal of ensuring that educating, nurturing and protecting young people is a top priority.”

While there is little doubt that Penn State athletics is on board with educating young people,  as it has been for over 50 years, I don't believe you can say the same for the NCAA or Mark Emmert.

Education

Mark Emmert's criticism of Penn State for not putting a priority on education was the height of hypocrisy.  One only need to look at the academic records of the football team when he was chancellor at Louisiana State University and his own commentary to understand that Emmert had a low bar when it came to academic success.


Recruiting Class Year              LSU                                     Penn State
1999                                        37%                                         76%
2000                                        38%                                         72%
2001                                        37%                                         75%
2002                                        42%                                         80%
2003                                        42%                                         77%
2004                                        48%                                         80%



Emmert's assessment of LSU's performance:

"The facts speak for themselves.  We went from an athletic program that was underperforming dramatically in the classroom to one that was performing well."

Having less than 50% of student-athletes graduate for six consecutive years isn't performing well and the so-called improvement, if graded academically, would mean that LSU didn't move up a grade and stayed solidly at an F-

The NCAA also had less than a shining moment with regard to 2011-2012 academic scandal at the University of North Carolina  -- and it appears that a "do over" is underway.  


Martin's Investigation concluded
academic fraud, lack of oversight
After the original inquiry, an NCAA enforcement staff member stated there were"no violations of current NCAA rules or student-athlete eligibility issues related to courses in African and Afro-American Studies."   However, UNC Chancellor Carol Folt admitted that "they failed the kids" and former basketball player Rashad McCants also gave a first person account of the academic fraud.  

Former faculty member Julius Nyang'oro was charged with felony criminal fraud for his role in the scandal.  He has since cut a deal and had the charges dropped in exchange for his cooperation with the Wainstein investigation.

Finally, Governor Jim Martin's 2012 investigation said that it was clearly "an academic scandal" and not an athletic scandal.  This was based on extensive analysis of courses that showed that both student-athletes and regular students were enrolled in the anomalous courses, had similar numbers of unauthorized grade changes, and similar grade point averages. Martin's  investigation resulted in 120 changes to ensure the problems didn't recur. 

 The bottom line, however, is that both the student-athletes and the non-student-athletes were not being educated, rather they were receiving course credits.

That point strikes at the heart of the Core Values of the  NCAA, which includes:

The collegiate model of athletics in which students participate as an avocation, balancing their academic, social and athletics experiences.

The pursuit of excellence in both academics and athletics.


What was the "academic experience" gained in those no show courses?  Where was the excellence in academics? 

Obviously, there was none and the NCAA was fine with student-athletes that violated the organization's core values so long as they didn't violate eligibility rules.
  

Child Protection
On July 23, 2012, the NCAA entered into the Consent Decree with Penn State.  The Consent Decree described Penn State, Joe Paterno, its employees, and the University community in the harshest of terms.  It held that Penn State's alleged failures in the Sandusky scandal violated core principles of human decency, morality, and honesty. 

Among the punitive features of the agreement was to be $60 million in fines to be paid to the NCAA to be placed in an endowment for programs for preventing child sexual abuse or to assist victims of child sexual abuse.  

Senator Jake Corman (later joined by Rob McCord) filed a lawsuit against the NCAA to prevent the $60 million in fines from being spent outside Pennsylvania's borders.  The NCAA had set up a task force to decide how to spend the money, which determined that 25% would be spent in Pennsylvania.  Corman's lawsuit stated the NCAA's plan violated the Pennsylvania Constitution.

As the case made its way through the legal system, with the NCAA losing at every turn, the organization finally dropped its opposition to the Corman lawsuit on the same day it reduced the sanctions that emanated from the Consent Decree.   The motion to dismiss must be ruled on by Judge Anne Covey.

It was little coincidence that the Mitchell report was released on September 8, 2014 because that so happened to be the day that Judge Covey ruled that all discovery was to be completed.  If you had any doubts that the NCAA, Penn State, and Mitchell were pulling a scam before last Monday, this should erase them.

NCAA and Mark Emmert
Hypocrisy is par for the course.
Rather than a Friday news dump, as they did in the UNC case in 2012, the NCAA chose to use a different tactic to avoid bad publicity.  Withdrawing from the lawsuit on the same day as the sanction reductions were announced severely reduced attention on the NCAA's latest legal set back.  As you might expect, few in the national media covered the news about the lawsuit.  

For an organization that decried Penn State for valuing football over the welfare of children, look who used "football news" to avoid even more damage to its already tarnished reputation.  

The hypocrisy is overwhelming -- yet, expected from Mark Emmert and the NCAA.

For more hypocrisy, here is the NCAA's statement on it's withdrawal from the lawsuit (courtesy of StateCollege.com):

 "Continuing this litigation would have further delayed the distribution of the funds to sexual abuse survivors for years, undermining the very intent of the fine. Our legal case is strong, but we believe even more strongly in preventing child sexual abuse and aiding survivors."

How much does the NCAA really believe in preventing child sexual abuse?  

When the Freeh Report conclusions about Sandusky's sexual abuse of children were blown up by former FBI profiler, James Clemente, the NCAA had no comment.   

Clemente stated that Freeh relied on the "common, yet erroneous stereotype of child sex offenders" and that his report "interpreted the facts using the wrong filter."   The tragic result of the Freeh Report is that it did not alert the public to the more insidious "acquaintance offender" who goes undetected for many years and abuses many children.  

The NCAA chose to stand behind the erroneous Freeh Report and stay silent, rather than to inform the public about threats that every child may face.   This action or lack thereof, exposes the NCAA's hypocrisy in its statement about preventing child sexual abuse.


Conclusion

Despite the levying of a $60 million dollar fine, the NCAA's actions in the Penn State case have been little more than a publicity stunt in an attempt to reverse its reputation as a weak enforcement organization.  Subsequent actions have shown the Penn State case to be both a mistake and an anomaly.  The NCAA has gone back to being a weak enforcer (see Miami (FL) case) and Emmert remains little more than empty suit.

While the public still awaits the trials of PSU officials for their alleged concealment of Sandusky's crimes and other charges, the verdict appears to be in on the NCAA....

Given the choice, the NCAA chosen to conceal information about its dealings with Penn State, Freeh, Mitchell, and the PA OAG, rather than fight to maintain its plans for aiding in the protection of the nation's children.