O.J. McDuffie: “If they find Jerry (Sandusky) guilty I don’t think there is a big enough punishment for him.”Joe Paterno spent 62 years at Penn State University, he guided the Nittany Lions to wins, and the Big Ten Championship Trophy has his name on it. Yet Joe Paterno’s legacy is forever tarnished and his squeaky clean image that was built on “honor” will forever be stained. Paterno was fired late last night, along with President Graham Spanier, as part of the fallout from a child molestation scandal that has rocked Penn State University. This goes beyond football though and it goes beyond Paterno’s legacy. The innocence of young kids was taken away and numerous kids had their lives changed.The allegations against Paterno’s former assistant Jerry Sandusky are heinous and they are disgusting. The other disgusting part to think about is that Paterno and a handful of other adults allegedly had a chance to do more and failed.
Anybody with any inkling of something like this going on should’ve showed some courage, they should’ve stepped up, and they should’ve done more for the kids, especially Joe Paterno. He was the supposed leader of the program, he was the most powerful figure in the state of Pennsylvania, and I can’t wrap my head around the fact that he, along with so many people had a chance to stop a monster from continuing his perverted actions and they didn’t.O.J. McDuffie played wide receiver for Penn State from and he chimes in about the way he feels about what has transpired at Penn State for the last decade plus.O.J. McDuffie joined WCNN in Atlanta with the Rude Awakening to talk about the scandal at Penn State, the idea that there were rumors about something going on, why Joe Paterno didn’t do more, whether or not he feels like Paterno has remained silent because officials are afraid about what he may say, what he thought about Sandusky when he was with the program, and what kind of punishment he thinks Sandusky deserves.
On his feelings about the scandal at PSU:
“It’s unimaginable. There have been rumors about some things that have happened with Jerry Sandusky but to hear everything that went down with everybody else it’s appalling. It really is.”
On the fact that there were rumors about something going on:
“Yeah there was some buzz around town that something happened. Obviously with the ’98 account that the janitor saw as well as the bigger eye witness account by one of the assistant coaches in 2002. There was definitely buzz around campus but it was all allegations. Then when you read the indictment and hear everybody knew, that’s when it becomes disturbing.”
On why Joe Paterno didn’t do more:
“That’s what I don’t get. The biggest thing that I think we need to do is I want to hear Joe talk. They’re hushing him up for some reason but I want to hear what Joe has to say because in my opinion if you heard about something in ’98 then you’ve got an eye-witness account again in there should be no more victims, there should be no other kids affected because it gets nipped in the bud right there and Jerry Sandusky should’ve been taken care of at that point however it is. You should not be allowed on campus. The fact that he was still had an office at times, still had access to the facilities, still around kids, and I just don’t get it.”
Whether or not he thinks PSU officials are afraid of what Joe might say:
“This is way bigger than football and the program. This is talking about human lives you know? It tarnishes it. 409 is nothing compared to the kids that have come forward with these allegations that honestly probably could’ve just been two kids I think. This is a terrible way for Joe to go out. Nobody is going to talk about one of the greatest coaches in college football history. I know that Joe is a great man, he’s molded a lot of great young boys into men, and he’s just one of those guys that’s a lot more concerned about how you are as a human being, how you are as a family member, how you are as a member of society than he is about how you are as a football player. The fact that something like this has happened on his watch is really going to tarnish his legacy.”
His thoughts on Sandusky:
“My years at Penn State from ’88 to ’92 Jerry was honestly one of my favorite coaches. In the way he coached the game, the way he handled his players, his Second Mile program that he started there was one of the most amazing things I had ever been a part of and it made me want to build my own foundation. Just be able to do something to help kids out. I would never, ever suspect a guy like Jerry to be a part of something like this or be the guy involved in something like this. We had no idea that Jerry had, for lack of better words, issues like this.”
On what should happen if Sandusky is found guilty:
“If Jerry is found to be guilty of these charges, with two eye witness accounts, the account in ’98 with the janitor I think I heard the janitor is suffering from dementia so he won’t be able to testify but the fact that you’ve got a year-old man in Mike McQueary witness Jerry in the shower with a ten-year-old boy, whether they were doing anything or not, that’s absolutely terrible in itself. So if they find Jerry guilty I don’t think there is a big enough punishment for him.”