Some current, former and future Nittany Lions believe the NCAA has no business levying groundbreaking sanctions against the university. Lydell Sargeant, who played cornerback for Penn State from 2006-08, believes current players should not suffer.
"I think it's unfortunate because unlike any other situation in the past with the NCAA, where a college athlete might have taken money from an agent or cheated on a test, the players aren't directly involved," Sargeant said Sunday. "I think this situation where the players aren't involved or even have a suspicion of involvement is unfortunate, especially in a time when coaches only stay in the same place for one or two years. So to punish the players for a coach's actions is contradictory. If anything, I don't think the NCAA should get involved.
“If anything, you should look at the school officials. There are more school officials implicated in this scandal than football personnel. There are just three coaches involved in this — Joe Paterno, Jerry Sandusky and Mike McQueary. There are at least five or six school officials involved," Sargeant said.
So far, the threat of sanctions hasn't scared off players.
The probability that sanctions are coming would enable players to transfer to another Division I program without having to sit out the mandatory one year. But many players are saying that they intend to stay. Junior tight end Garry Gilliam tweeted "I still bleed blue and white" while starting quarterback Matt McGloin said "the hotter the fire, the stronger the steel."
The ultimate fear is that sanctions will hurt recruitment. Defensive tackle Greg Webb withdrew his verbal commitment for Penn State Sunday and opted for North Carolina. But Adam Breneman, a senior at Cedar Cliff High near Harrisburg, who is considered the top tight end in the class of 2013, said, "It's going to take a lot to get me to decommit from coach [Bill] O'Brien."
"Our recruiting class is a really close group and we've taken the ‘us against the world' mentality ... I don't think you're going to see as many transfers and decommits as some people are predicting," Breneman said. n
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