by Travis Normand
The Freeh report, the weapon being wielded to destroy the legacy of Joe Paterno, is not without error.
Everyone from the NCAA to the general public has used the report as their factual basis in forming their personal judgments, yet the report is flawed. But have no fear, the report has been updated to reflect the correct information! Thank goodness the corrections were made before anyone rushed to judgment or did anything rash (like leveling unprecedented and unsupported NCAA penalties, or removing a statue).
If you read the article posted below you will see exactly what changes were made. Are the changes drastic and earth-shaking? No, not really. But they are substantive, as opposed to simply being typos. In one instance, the report got the year wrong (it should have been 2001 not 1998).
One can choose to either look at these changes as subtle and irrelevant or extreme. I view them as somewhere in between.
If anything these changes/mistakes cause me to question the Freeh report altogether. For example, how does the former director of the FBI make such blatant mistakes in his report? I am sure that when the report was released, Freeh and his staff were fairly certain it was mistake-free — they were wrong. Now, after the corrections have been made, they are again most likely under the impression that all is correct. However, mistakes have happened before and errors have gone overlooked, so why should we believe all is now perfect? Are there any more mistakes?
The Paterno family (and others) has questioned the reports findings and issued a statement saying they will conduct their own investigation. Do these mistakes in the Freeh report further justify their decision to do so? I would think so. Afterall, if it was your own legacy at stake, would you sit by and take someone elses report as gospel? If yes, then I ask, would you do so after it was shown to not be free from mistakes and errors?
Finally, what was the rush? Why did the report have to be released on 12 July 2012? What was the harm in waiting another week while double-checking for errors? We knew the fate of Penn State University hinged on the report’s findings, so why not get it right the first time — if for no other reason than to make sure the report couldn’t be questioned as “credible.”
PENN STATE’S FREEH REPORT ON SANDUSKY CASE UPDATED TO CORRECT ERRORS
Published: Wednesday, July 25, 2012, 9:29 AM Updated: Wednesday, July 25, 2012, 9:57 AM
By SARA GANIM, The Patriot-News The Patriot-News
In two instances, the original report stated that former athletic director Tim Curley — charged with perjury and failure to report — met with Sandusky in 1998, when the former assistant coach was still employed and was under investigation by campus police.
That actually happened in 2001, three years later, when a second report was made after Sandusky retired. Authorities weren’t called in that case, and that’s the reason Curley and vice president Gary Schultz are charged.
An email in the report showing correspondence between Schultz and university counsel Wendell Courtney was also corrected.
Originally, the Freeh report printed this was the exchange: “Courtney emails Schultz a newspaper story about the Sandusky charges. Schultz replies: “I was never aware that ‘Penn State police investigated inappropriate touching in a shower’ in 1998.”
The corrected exchange: “Courtney emails Schultz a newspaper story about the Sandusky charges and states: “I was never aware that ‘Penn State police investigated inappropriate touching in a shower’ in 1998.”
The words were those of Courtney, not Schultz, as the Freeh report originally stated.
Since Freeh made the report public July 12, he has gotten a lot of criticism about the objectivity of what he concluded.
Among those questioning it is Sen. Jake Corman, who said he is waiting for the criminal trials before making a decision, and would have like to seen the NCAA — which imposed harsh sanctions on Penn State this week — opt not to rely on the Freeh report.