Tuesday, September 6

In The Lion's Den: An Informative and Infuriating Read

Review by Ray Blehar

Graham Spanier's first hand account of the injustices he endured at the hands of the Pennsylvania's corrupt criminal justice system and the dishonesty from former Penn State officials is an informative and infuriating read.

Spanier takes us on an informative journey of his somewhat tragic upbringing that spans two continents, to his distinguished professional career in academia and an advisor at the highest levels of government, both in the US and abroad, and finally to the unbelievable and infuriating experiences in his attempt to defend himself from overzealous prosecutors hell bent on jailing him for political purposes. 

The prosecutors in his case routinely used the media to convict their targets in the court of public opinion, threatened witnesses with prosecution if they would not condemn the accused, ignored their ethical obligations to the legal community and the public at-large, and engaged in abhorrent behaviors that corrupted the entire criminal justice system in the Keystone State.   

Monday, April 18

ESPN's Paterno hit piece, "Untold," is refuted by the facts

Not Untold: A 1979 Sports Illustrated story mentioned the Todd Hodne incident

Ray Blehar
April 18, 2022

ESPN's Paula Lavigne's and Tom Junod's hit piece on Joe Paterno, titled "Untold," piles onto the false narrative (from the Freeh Report) that the former legendary coach and Penn State University (PSU) protected the football program at all costs.   Like the Freeh Report, "Untold" assigns sinister motives to nearly every action taken by Paterno and other PSU officials with respect to the arrest and conviction of former football player Todd Hodne.  And, like the Freeh Report, "Untold" makes its case mostly through innuendo and uncorroborated statements. 

The facts about Paterno and PSU's handling of criminal cases stand in stark contrast to the story spun by Lavigne and Junod.

1.  According to former judge Carmine Prestia, neither Paterno, nor anyone else from the football program, ever interfered in criminal investigations or asked that his players received special treatment in the 40 years he was a policeman and judge.

2. Former Penn State Faculty Senate chairs wrote that over their hundreds of years of experience they were never asked to give favorable treatment to student athletes.

3. No one from Penn State was convicted for covering up or obstructing the investigation of the Jerry Sandusky criminal case.  

But ESPN wasn't about to let those facts stand in the way of its story.