Responding to Average Reds:
While I completely disagree, I am wondering why you are stopping with the football program. I think your argument makes more sense if you want Penn State University "shut down". As you said, the potential criminal penalties did nothing to dissuade Spainer - the President of the University - from his actions. And frankly, focusing on just the football program seems like an action designed to penalize Joe Paterno, who, unfortunately, is beyond earthly punishments.
The PSU problem started in the football program but it became a problem for the entire University. So focusing a punishment on just the football program seems to ignore the scope and depth of the problem.
I think the US Department of Education, through the Clery Act, will dispense an appropriate punishment to Penn State University. That punishment will have the ripple effect you desire, in that other universities will know and understand the potential consequences for covering up crimes (not just sexual abuse, although that should be at the forefront).
Fixating on the NCAA & the football program is emotionally satisfying but ultimately inadequate. This is bigger than the NCAA or the football program and wishing for the NCAA - the equivalent of the educational system's dog-catching office - to be the ultimate arbiter ignores the scope and depth of the problem at PSU. Spainer, Curley & Schultz need to be criminally prosecuted and sent to PMITA prison; PSU, as a full university needs to be held accountable. And the punishments need to be progressive, not regressive. Shutting down the football program is the simplest, and least effective, way to punish PSU. Using the football program to "make good" out of the tragedy is the best way to have something positive emerge from this shitstorm.
Edited by soxfan121, 21 July 2012 - 01:25 PM.