I'd argue that the only thing PSU is going to understand is sanctions to their precious football program. The problem at PSU is that the cult of PSU football has too much power at that school. There is no counter-balance to keep football in check. Even today with all the evidence about what a horrible person JoePa turned out to be, PSU students and fans are holding vigils at his statue honoring him. That is evidence to me that PSU community still hasn't gotten the message.
Those people are never going to get the message. The more you punish, the more Paterno becomes a Martyr. The concern should be whether the administration at PSU will continue to be football's yes men.
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