As I noted in my earlier posting, if President Rodney Erikson of PSU did not need to consult and inform his Board of Trustees on the issue of whether to agree to sanctions which were imposed by the NCAA, then what issue, pray tell, would ever require that kind of consultation and briefing of the Board?
But leaving aside the precise legal requirements contained within the PSU bylaws, or cookbook Corporate Law 101, shouldn’t Erikson, as a matter of courtesy and comity, have first consulted with his Board, at least by way of a courtesy conference call meant soley to give them a “heads-up” that the agreement was going to be entered into?
In fact, Erikson’s failure to consult the Board shows such fundamentally bad judgment, both legally and politically, that it raises out of somewhat thin air the idle question: is Erikson motivated to hide something about his own past involvement in the scandal-generating scenario, by agreeing on his own, like some man stranded on an island, to these gargantuan, earth-shattering NCAA penalties?
Which then brings into question the circumstances surrounding Erikson’s hire last November. Recall that he was hired on an initially “interim” basis on November 9th, but within a week, without national search and with astonishing, if not reckless speed, was appointed to “permanent” status by the Board, having previously served as a PSU Vice President. This was hardly the kind of “fresh start” on “complete housecleaning” which oft times is prudent in circumstances of crisis like the ones at PSU back then. So one wonders: how much did Erikson know, during his long years at PSU before his ascension to the Presidency on November 9, about the Sandusky predations around that community — and about the efforts on the part of PSU administrators and athletics officials to report or bury information about Sandusky’s crimes?
Or was it just — incredible as it may seem — that Erikson actually NEVER READ the Freeh Report? Could he have never seen that Freeh hammered on the absence of BOT involvement as a primary causative factor in bringing about the culture of coverup at PSU?
If he never read Freeh’s opus, then he ought be relieved of his duties. If he’s covering up some prior involvement or knowledge he had, then he also ought to go. If he blew off the BOT — when there was no hurry and therefore no good reason to, then he also ought to go.
In the meantime, here’s what to look for: some or all of the PSU BOT may move for what’s called “injunctive relief” — either an Temporary Restraining Order and/or a Preliminary Restraining Order — which seeks a court order barring the enforcement of the Consent Decree based on a lack of Erikson authority to enter into the agreement. The resulting firestorm might be one which could endanger the tenure of NCAA President Emmert, who should have himself insisted that President Erikson obtain some kind of BOT sign-off on the Consent Decree before any public announcement.
Knuckleheads, as Charles Barkley would say. Knuckleheads.