Tony Dungys thoughts
Accountability and Penn State
I have, like most football fans, been following the events as they have unfolded at Penn State regarding Coach Joe Paterno and the football program. Having known Coach Paterno and Jerry Sandusky, the coach who has been charged in the allegations, I am shocked at what has been alleged to have taken place. I have always had the utmost respect for Coach Paterno and the way things have been run at Penn State. I have played with, and coached, many players from there and they all have nothing but incredible things to say about him.
That being said, though, I believe the University had no other choice in this matter than to accept his resignation or force him to step down. I think they made the right move in ousting the President of the University as well. When something of this magnitude happens I think everyone in a leadership position is responsible. Whether it is directly your fault or not, it has taken place under your watch and there is no way that public confidence could ever be regained without a change in leadership.
I also think this is a reminder to all of us that we have a responsibility to hold each other accountable, no matter what. It doesnít matter if it is a subordinate, a co-worker or your boss. If something is taking place that is wrong, we have to address it and make sure action is taken. Iím sure there are a lot of people at Penn State who are saying in hindsight, ĒI wish I had said somethingĖI wish I had done something.Ē When it involves something as serious as child abuse, we canít afford to assume that someone else will handle it. We have to act. Itís just sad that it appears so many children were hurt as we were learning this lesson.