Eight Months, For Years To Come.
He had come down from State College to recruit Eddie Drummond, a speedster you may remember from his pro-bowl days as a special teams guru for Detroit. Joe Pa's visit was the "ceremonial appearance" most people only get to read about in books or watch in movies. The recruiting process was completed and exhausted, now it was time for the closer. Enter Paterno. It was not a surprise when Drummond, a Pennsylvania boy, signed on the dotted line and became a Nittany Lion.
History and recollection can change over time. I remember that day being so exciting and surreal. I got to see a football legend in-the-flesh, and listen to him speak whatever he was speaking - It was loud so you couldn't understand most of what he was preaching. The memories of that day held stable and true, until around 8 months ago. Now, every time I think of that moment, seeing Paterno in his glory and comfort with the crowd, I wonder if somewhere, back in the furthest depths of his mind, was there a mini-Joe Pa shouting, "When the hell are you going to confront Jerry and fix what you know needs to be fixed!?"
The barrage and saturation of the Jerry Sandusky trial, and aftermath of the verdict, will splatter the television screen for months to come. Not only the sports networks, but also major news outlets will dissect this thing like a frog in 8th grade. Analysts, legal and non, will get in their 15 minutes of in-fame with jargon and hearsay, and mix in arguments for what needed to be done vs, what will be done. As extreme as it sounds, this 24/7 coverage and blog-blabbing may be the exact remedy needed for this case, and the sensitive subject matter carried.
The issue with steroids in baseball floated around the locker rooms of the MLB, and minor leagues, for many years like a fog, dissipating as soon as wind of investigation or media-prying blew in. The problem was there, but not acknowledged. It wasn't until Jose Canseco's book, and the coverage and over-coverage, that people stared to pay attention to the issue. Now, steps are being taken to clean up the game and rid baseball of performance-enhancers, completely. Call him what you would like, but Jose helped solidify a movement that has caused change in the game, for the absolute and un-arguable betterment of the sport.
The act of child sex abuse has happened, is happening, and will happen to many children, in all areas. Sports or not, covering the Sandusky case, and what is to become of him, should not be looked at like a spectacle to fill news-hours. View it as the red-flag that has been ignored for too long. Hopefully, other kids will see this, along with adults, and a movement towards the betterment of life can begin. The testimonies of the abused should not be occurring twenty years after-the-fact. It should happen immediately, and with the right steps, never again.
There is not enough time in the world to give a personal vendetta of the written scribble on Sandusky. I am not an insider-psychologist and I am not a Catholic Priest. What little I know does not make me the golden-badged expert people sometimes anoint themselves in any major issue. I do know that change needs to happen, and quickly. Keeping kids out of sports for fear of concussions is one thing, keeping kids out of sports for fear of sexual abuse by their coach is another.