While many in the media have discounted the Paterno's rebuttal of the Freeh Report, I believe that Wick Soller's team of experts have also hit the nail on the head about why the Freeh Report must be challenged.
As I read Sue Paterno's letter to the football program, I was encouraged by the following passage:
I will not attempt in this letter to summarize the Report of the experts except to say that they unreservedly and forcefully confirm my beliefs about Joe’s conduct. In addition, they present a passionate and persuasive critique of the Freeh report as a total disservice to the victims of Sandusky and the cause of preventing child sex offenses. I hope you can take the time to review the report and share it with friends and family.
In closing, I want to address two issues that have come up frequently over the last year. First, some critics say it is no longer appropriate for me or my family to comment further on this case and that the Freeh report and the actions of the NCAA should close the book on the Sandusky scandal. This cannot happen. The Freeh report failed and if it is not challenged and corrected, nothing worthwhile will have come from these tragic events.
I hope that the panel of experts are very forceful with these points, over and above the injustice done to Paterno and Penn State.
Better protection for children should be at the top of the list of the wrongs that must be righted from the scandal. And even though the Commonwealth convened a task force to identify improvements in child protection, the task force's recommendations have not been acted upon by Governor Corbett.
Reflecting on the Media Reaction To The Facts of The Scandal
When Franco conducted his first Town Hall in Pittsburgh, Gene Collier of the Post Gazette and Bob Dvorchak were willing to come in and hear what Franco, John Ziegler, Eileen Morgan, and I had to say. I am sure they got more than they expected because the facts of the case strongly support that Freeh got it wrong. During the panel, Collier admitted that DPW and CYS blew it in 1998.
While I can't know what was inside Collier's and Dvorchak's heads when they arrived, I suspect they believed that we would be making the case that Paterno deserved better for his 61 years of service to Penn State and that his prior actions outweighed whatever happened in 2001.
What they heard was an outstanding review of the laws and the evidence about the case.
In Philadelphia, John and Franco met with the scheduled panelist Dom Giordano on his radio talk show and discussed the facts of the case. After hearing what JZ and Franco had to say, Giordano was a no show for the King of Prussia event. I'm guessing Giordano knew he had no chance arguing the facts of the case.
Frank Fitzpatrick came to the King of Prussia event and after hearing the presentations of the facts, promptly left the building. Fitzpatrick knew he was going to get slaughtered because he couldn't possibly argue the facts of the case.
In Washington DC, no media would even commit to being on the panel.
When confronted with the facts, the media stands no chance. They bought the lies of Louis Freeh's press conference (I will blog on this later today) and now those lies are being exposed. Their only recourse has been to hope the story just goes away.
They've done their best not to report any contradictory information against the current narrative.
But facts are stubborn things.
The media is finding out that the Freeh Report was short on facts and high on supposition.
Tomorrow, the real facts will be exposed and the media will see one of the greatest turn arounds in sports history -- maybe in news history.
As Beano Cook often said about Joe Paterno, "He's been buried more times than Lazarus."