Board of Trustees approves terms of proposed NCAA lawsuit settlement

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. – By a unanimous vote, the Penn State Board of Trustees today (Jan. 16) approved the terms of a proposed settlement of the lawsuit relating to the Endowment Act. According to the settlement, the July 2012 Consent Decree between Penn State and the NCAA has been dissolved, and all punitive sanctions eliminated.

Under the terms of the new agreement:

  • $60 million will be dedicated in Pennsylvania to helping children who have experienced child abuse and to further prevent child abuse. Of the $60 million, the Commonwealth will receive $48 million to help provide services to child victims.  Penn State will use $12 million to create an endowment that will be a long-term investment in expanding our research, education and public service programs to help eradicate child sexual abuse.  All parties agree strongly that caring for victims and providing support for programs that help address the problem of child sexual abuse is of paramount importance.
  • The compromise restores 112 wins to the Penn State football program.
  • All other punitive sanctions also have been eliminated.

To see a recap of Penn State President Eric Barron's comments during a post-board-meeting press conference, visit http://pennstatermag.com/2015/01/16/president-barrons-comments-on-the-ncaa-settlement/.

Barron and Penn State Board of Trustees Chairman Keith Masser also have released statements on the matter:

Statement by President Eric Barron:

"Penn State is pleased that state Sen. Jake Corman, state Treasurer Robert McCord and the NCAA have agreed to a settlement of the lawsuit relating to the Endowment Act. According to the settlement, the University and the NCAA will enter into a new agreement that supersedes and dissolves the Consent Decree.  We thank the parties for their efforts on this difficult issue. The settlement has several important elements.

“Sixty million dollars will be dedicated in Pennsylvania to helping children who have experienced child abuse and to further prevent child abuse. Of the $60 million, the Commonwealth will receive $48 million to help provide services to child victims.  Penn State will use $12 million to create an endowment that will be a long term investment in expanding our research, education and public service programs to help eradicate child sexual abuse.  All parties agree strongly that caring for victims and providing support for programs that help address the problem of child sexual abuse is of paramount importance.

“The compromise restores 112 wins to our football program.  I know that all Penn State alumni will be gratified to see these 112 wins restored. These wins belong to the student-athletes, Coach Paterno and his staff, who represented Penn State both in the classroom and on the football field. All other punitive sanctions also have been eliminated.

“The compromise also recognizes the fact that the NCAA, as well as the Big Ten — which is a party to the Athletics Integrity Agreement, had a legitimate interest and concern about the Jerry Sandusky matter.  Based on the overarching principles that govern both membership organizations (including the institutional control of athletics) and conversations with my fellow presidents that make up the governance of the NCAA and the Big Ten, I am convinced that they acted in good faith. I believe that the NCAA leadership had a good faith concern about and desire to address the issue of institutional control in this case.

“Penn State will continue our dedication to compliance and ethics that sets a national standard for athletics integrity as outlined in the Athletics Integrity Agreement.

“I want to thank Sen. Corman, Treasurer McCord, and the NCAA for their efforts to bring about an outcome that is in the best interest of Penn State.  I also want to thank the hard-working students, staff and faculty at Penn State who have ensured the highest level of compliance and ethics.  Finally, I want to make it clear that we have a tremendous alumni community that cares a great deal for Penn State. It is my hope that this agreement will continue the healing process for all.”

Statement from Board Chairman Keith Masser:

“I'm pleased all parties have reached an agreement, and I would like to thank Sen. Jake Corman and Treasurer Robert McCord for their efforts. Sen. Corman has been a tireless advocate for the Penn State community for many years, and his leadership has helped our University in tremendous ways.

“This agreement is good for Pennsylvania and the University. It will keep $60 million here in Pennsylvania for the fight against child sexual abuse, and it restores all football wins from 1998-2011.

“I am proud the University went beyond the requirements of the consent decree in the interest of the safety of children and students on our campuses, and to ensure proper oversight of University personnel. Those efforts twice led to the unprecedented rollback of sanctions.

“Penn Staters show every day that we are a compassionate community that remains dedicated to the service of our students and communities.”

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Last Updated January 21, 2015