State College, PA (Sports Network) - Lawyers on behalf of a member of the Penn
State Board of Trustees sent out a letter to the NCAA Infractions Appeals
Committee saying they will appeal the sanctions levied against the university.
Lawyers for trustee Ryan McCombie sent the letter to Wendy Walters, Staff
Liaison for the Appeals Committee. Other unidentified members of the Board of
Trustees were also mentioned in the appeals letter.
The letter, obtained by a few media organizations, said the appellants will
challenge the NCAA's adoption of the results of former FBI director Louis
Freeh's investigation, which accused former head coach Joe Paterno and
other Penn State senior officials of concealing critical facts relating to
Jerry Sandusky's child sex-abuse case.
The letter states the consent decree against Penn State, which included a
four-year postseason ban, $60 million fine, five years probation and a
vacation of all wins dating to 1998, was null and void since the school's
president "lacked the legal authority to agree to the entry of the decree."
The NCAA also violated "its own established rules and procedures by failing to
have an investigation conducted by members of the enforcement staff or outside
counsel familiar with the NCAA's investigative standards and other procedural
protections," according to the letter.
Attorneys Paul Kelly and Gregg Clifton wrote in the letter that McCombie's
"heart breaks for the victims of this terrible saga, and he and other members
of the Board are committed to taking decisive measures to demonstrate respect
for the victims and to insure that such reprehensible conduct can never again
occur in the future."
On Friday, the Joe Paterno family sent an official appeal letter to the NCAA
asking for a 30-day window in which to file a written response relating to the
The university was punished for its collective failure to report Sandusky, a
former assistant under Paterno. Sandusky was convicted on 45 counts of sexual
abuse against 10 boys over a 15-year period.
The Sports Network