NCAA Criticized For Paterno Shirt

- UNIVERSITY PARK – A little more than one year ago the NCAA placed sanctions on Penn State for its handling of the Jerry Sandusky child sex abuse scandal.

One of those sanctions involved taking away more than 100 wins under former head football coach Joe Paterno, but the NCAA is coming under criticism for selling a shirt on its merchandise website promoting those wins it stripped away.

“Since they took the wins away, they shouldn’t be taking money on them,” said Lana Sutton, a worker at Penn State. “I hate that they took those wins away from him.”

It’s not yet clear how much money, if any the NCAA made from the Paterno shirt. WTAJ reached out to the organization for a comment, it has not yet responded to those requests.

In a statement released Thursday, the NCAA indicated it would soon be shutting down the merchandise website, and would no longer be selling merchandise representing any colleges with a few exceptions.

“The store will be shut down temporarily and reopen in a few weeks as a marketplace for NCAA championship merchandise only,” said NCAA Vice President Mark Lewis in a written statement. “We determined the core function of the fan shop should not be to offer merchandise licensed by our member schools.”

Although the Paterno shirt is not referenced in the statement, some Penn State fans are declaring a small victory.

“I think there’s been a lot of talk about re-evaluating things at the NCAA,” said Mari Anne Cook, a PSU Alum. “I think they let power get to them.”

Meanwhile, the sanctions remain, and so do the angry feelings some fans have for the NCAA.

“They were targeting the wrong people,” said Cook. “The sanctions were inappropriate…and Joe Paterno deserves his wins.”

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