Penn State was punished this week for covering up the child sexual abuse of former assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky.
ESPN reported that Penn State was hit with a $60 million fine and a four-year football postseason ban. The university also had to vacate all of its wins since 1998 – 112 in all. Joe Paterno went from the winningest coach in the history of college football, to the 12th winningest.
In June, Sandusky was found guilty of 45 of 48 criminal counts related to his sexual abuse of young boys, CNN reported. Sandusky showered with a boy in a Penn State locker room in 1998, but no charges were brought.
Although Sandusky left the university in 1999, he continued to have access to university facilities, despite the fact officials knew of the 1998 incident, according to cbssports.com.
In February 2001, Sandusky was seen sexually assaulting a boy thought to be about 10-years-old in the university's Lasch Building Shower by graduate assistant Mike McQueary. McQueary reported what he saw to Penn State officials including Paterno, but authorities never were alerted, cbssports.com reported.
The university conducted its own investigation of the child sexual abuse scandal. Former FBI director Louis Freeh's report was filed July 12. Among its findings: "The most saddening finding by the Special Investigative Counsel is the total and consistent disregard by the most senior leaders at Penn State for the safety and welfare of Sandusky's child victims."
Some have said that the sanctions levied against the university went too far: "The wins...we didn't cheat at football, that's unnecessary," student Alex Gibson told ABC.
Paterno died in January, but his family released a statement critizing the university for accepting the punishment from the NCAA: "Punishing past, present and future students of the University because of Sandusky's crimes does not serve justice," the Detroit Free Press reported.