What to do About College Football

By Beacon Staff
By John Fuller

Scandalous incidents at Penn State University and the University of Montana have brought attention once again to the insidious relationship between college administrations and the necessity of winning. The simple fact remains that the football programs at many major universities treat their athletes and athletic staff like pampered movie stars, which perpetuates a sense of entitlement.

Many players who can barely hear thunder and see lightning are called academically qualified and they are encouraged to only take “general studies” classes. Their tuition, room and board, books, etc., are all paid for by the university. But there is one redeeming quality of this emphasis on winning. Superb athletes that deviate from the norm are still glorified.

Wouldn’t it be wonderful if students that pursued virtue, honor, integrity, patriotic values, and, yes, conservative viewpoints were also accepted? But no, let a college student proclaim that homosexuality is a sin and he may be expelled. Let a conservative student express a viewpoint that marriage should only be for one man and one woman and he is called a bigot. The politically correct police oppress those students while ignoring behavior from their athletes or athletic staff more akin to thugs.

By Joe Carbonari

When did we throw out the concept of personal responsibility? Sure, scandalous things happen. They are perpetrated by individuals who can and are identified by name. Let’s hold them personally responsible for their acts – those who commit them and those who cover them up.

What Jerry Sandusky did at Penn State University was terrible. What Joe Paterno did was terrible as well. Paterno was an icon of sport – looked up to, not just for his record, but also as a builder of character in the players he coached. He was a role model, and he let us down.

Now college football is besmirched, with whole institutions and those associated with them derided and belittled. Are all, or even a majority, of the athletes, the coaches, the managers, the fans, the faculty, or the administrators at either Penn State, or more locally, the University of Montana, guilty of anything nefarious? I don’t think so, and I don’t think that they deserve to be punished, or diminished, in any way.

So, by all means let’s celebrate those special among us, our “pursuers of virtue,” and all the rest. Let’s also hold our wrong-doers personally responsible and let’s work to strengthen the resolve of those who are weak.

Send feedback to [email protected]