Macomb, IL – The panelists discuss media coverage of the scandal at Penn State University.
Former PSU football defensive coordinator Jerry Sandusky is charged with 40 criminal counts of molesting young boys. Legendary head football coach Joe Paterno lost his job as a result of the scandal and the university president was also dismissed.
Those who rioted over Paterno's firing blamed the media, while other people blamed the media for not focusing enough attention on the victims of the alleged assaults. Panelist Bill Knight points out the media was right in the middle of the situation, accurately reporting on the criminal allegations as well as a candle light vigil held in support of the victims.
The Poynter Review Project Blog criticized ESPN for being slow to respond to the story and failing to grasp its severity. For example, one ESPN blogger questioned how the scandal might impact recruiting at PSU.
Panelist Mike Murray says it can be difficult for a journalist to turn on a dime and report on what went wrong at a institution that had been so highly praised for many years. But panelist Rich Egger feels sports reporters write too many fluffy features and need to be better prepared to cover serious sports news too.