The vultures are already forming circles overhead State College.
In the 48 hours since the NCAA levied unprecedented sanctions against the program, an extraordinary recruiting frenzy has played out on Penn State’s campus, where players are working out. At noon Wednesday, several groups of coaches from opposing teams were waiting in the Lasch Football Building parking lot to recruit Penn State players.
Let’s call this what it is, folks. A top house got put on probation because of the House Dad’s total disregard for Risk Management, and the IFC is letting bottom-tiers like Illinois openly and publicly dirty rush its kids with promises of grade money scholarships and formals in Pasadena.
The raiding of the Penn State players like they were assets of Bluestar Airlines was to be expected. The repercussion-free transfer of players was Exhibit 1 for all those who buy into the (completely ridiculous) “this penalty is worse than the Death Penalty” argument. This team will be fielding a roster that could barely hang with the Dillon Panthers.
But I never imagined that the process of pillaging the Nittany Lions would be handled with such a complete lack of tact by the other programs of the Big Ten, a conference that has always prided itself on doing things the “right” way.
“Leaders” don’t set up rush banners on opposing teams’ campuses. “Legends” don’t come across as tacky, desperate, and overly-aggressive. And only pompous jerks name their divisions “Leaders” and “Legends.”
Whatever happened to the days of backroom deals, secret texts, and tattoo parlor transactions? Not only has the Big Ten lost its ability to look down on the SEC; it’s apparently accepted the mentality of “if you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em.”
It almost brings me a tear to my eye. The Big Ten is all grown up.
36 days ‘til kickoff.
- [via ESPN]