McQueary testifies in trial of Penn State officials

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Testifying at the trial of on-leave Penn State athletic director Tim Curley and another former high-ranking university official, Mike McQueary again reiterated that he saw Jerry Sandusky sexually molesting a boy he believed to be 10 to 12 years old in a shower of the football building in 2002.

Curley and retired vice president for finance and business Gary Schultz have been charged with perjury and failure to report in connection to the alleged molestation involving Sandusky.  McQueary, as part of over two hours on the witness stand, testified that he informed then-head coach Joe Paterno the day after the alleged molestation, who then took the information of the alleged molestation to Curley and Schultz and arranged a meeting to discuss the situation.

“I told them that I saw Jerry in the showers with a young boy and what I had seen was extremely sexual … and it was wrong,” McQueary testified when asked what he told Curley and Schultz.  “There’s no question in my mind that I conveyed to them I saw Jerry with a boy in the showers and that it was severe sexual acts.”

McQueary acknowledged that he “did not see insertion or penetration“, but maintained “it was very clear it looked like there was intercourse going on.”

Sandusky, who by then was retired but maintained a significant presence around the football program, was barred by the administration from bringing boys onto the campus, McQueary said he was told 4-5 days later.  No one, including McQueary, went to the police with the information.

“In my mind it was like speaking to a DA,” McQueary said in regards to the meeting that included Schultz, who was head of the university police force as part of his job description.

After speaking to his father the night of the shower incident, McQueary went to the home of Paterno the following morning to speak to the coach.  McQueary testified that he told Paterno what he saw in the shower of the Lasch football building was “extremely sexual in nature” and without a doubt made it clear to Paterno that what he had witnessed between Sandusky and the boy — both of whom were naked — was a sexual act.  “Out of respect” for the coach, McQueary testified, the words “sodomy” or “anal intercourse” were not used.

As for Paterno’s reaction, McQueary testified that the coach “was shocked and saddened, slumped back in his chair and said sorry you had to see that, it’s terrible.”  Paterno added that McQueary had “done the right thing” in coming to him with the information.

Another eyebrow-raising note that came out of McQueary’s testimony was his initial interaction with Paterno following the 2002 incident.  When McQueary first phoned Paterno and informed him there was something they needed to talk about, the coach’s response was that “I don’t have a job for you if that’s what it’s about, so don’t bother coming over if that’s what it’s about.”

Shortly thereafter, McQueary was promoted from grad assistant to administrative assistant with the football program before being named wide receivers coach in 2004.

Following his second meeting with Schultz, McQueary testified that he never again spoke to anybody at the university about the alleged molestation, although Paterno did ask him 2-3 months later if he was OK.  Based on the reactions of Schultz and Curley, McQueary testified, he thought his information was taken seriously and the two would “investigate closely and follow up with me.”

McQueary also testified that he never confronted Sandusky about what he’d allegedly witnessed, either in the locker room when he first saw the former coordinator in the shower with the young boy or in the years afterwards.

Michigan State, Washington round out future schedules with Utah State

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Needing to fill a single spot in some future schedules, both Michigan State and Washington have come calling to the Mountain West for an opponent. Utah State was happy to oblige.

Michigan State will host Utah State on September 1, 2018. The Aggies will travel to Washington on September 19, 2020. For their travels, Utah State will collect $2.9 million between the two games, according to FBScheduels.com ($1.4 million from Michigan State, $1.5 million from Washington).

The Big Ten and Pac-12 each use nine-game conference schedules, leaving three spots open for non-conference games. The Big Ten requires all conference members schedule one game per season against another power conference opponent (the Pac-12 has no such requirement of its members at this time), although exceptions are made. Utah State, as a member of the Mountain West Conference, would not satisfy that requirement for the Big Ten, but the Spartans already have a road game against Arizona State (Pac-12) on the schedule in 2018. Michigan State and Arizona State will play again in 2019 in East Lansing. Michigan State also has future power conference matchups with Notre Dame (2017, 2026, 2027) and Miami (2020, 2021). Michigan State will also play BYU in 2020 in Provo.

Washington has future power conference matchups with Rutgers (2017), Auburn (2018, in Atlanta), and Michigan (2020, 2021). The Huskies will also face Mountain West Competition from Fresno State (2017), Hawaii (2019), and Nevada (2027).

Utah State will face power conference opponents on the road in 2017 (Wisconsin, Wake Forest), 2018 (Michigan State), 2019 (Wake Forest, LSU), 2020 (Washington), and 2021 (Washington State). Utah State will also host Washington State in 2020 as part of a home-and-home deal. Utah State also has an annual series against BYU running through 2020.

Old Dominion hopes to “hit the ground running” on new stadium project

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Some fans of the Old Dominion football program may be getting a little impatient with the progress (or lack of) in the development of the football stadium, but Old Dominion athletic director Wood Selig says things are coming along nicely and progress will start to be seen soon enough.

“Once we get the architects engaged, we’ll figure out what $55 million will buy in 2019 dollars,” Selig said, according to The Virginian-Pilot. “Then we’ll have an idea for how much additional money needs to be raised to support the project.”

Old Dominion is planning on tearing down Foreman Field at the end of the 2018 season and rebuild it with modern seating and amenities. The $55 million project remained on the books in the Virginia budget in February, allowing the university to move ahead with their plans. The first step is finding an architect to take on the job.

Because Old Dominion’s football stadium is among the smallest in the nation and will remain so even after the rebuild and renovations, the entire project is expected to move fairly swiftly once the work actually begins. Old Dominion isn’t building a grand football palace, so any concerns over the lack of updates on the stadium should be calmed.

If nothing else, the concerns raised about the lack of updates on the stadium renovations may just mean Old Dominion has some eager fans excited about the future of the program.

Baylor interim president to Texas senators: “We were not trying to cover up what happened at Baylor”

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Texas senators are taking aim at Baylor University and are hoping to persuade the university to be more open and transparent despite being a private university.

Baylor interim president David Garland faced criticism from senators during a hearing with the Senate Higher Education Committee on Wednesday regarding the coverup of rape accusations found throughout the football program in recent years.

“We were not trying to cover up what happened at Baylor,” Garland said to the committee. Unfortunately for Garland, that was far from enough to sway the senators on the committee from playing nice with him and Baylor University.

I’m sorry, but I don’t buy that for a minute,” Senator Kel Seliger replied, according to The Texas Tribune. “I don’t buy that for a minute. I think that is exactly what was going on.”

The exchange between the interim president at Baylor and the senator came during a hearing regarding a state bill that requires any school receiving more than $5 million in Tuition Equalization Grants from the state to comply with open records and open meetings laws in the state of Texas. Baylor, being a private university, believes it should not have to comply with the bill, which would open up the doors to more information regarding Baylor’s handling of vile accusations within its university and athletics department.

The exchange comes a day after Baylor moved to dismiss a lawsuit claiming 52 rapes over a three-year period occurred at the university.

If you thought the ugliness around the Baylor situation was going to be limited to athletics, you thought wrong. This is clearly a state-wide concern and battle now. And things are always bigger in Texas, right?

A&M-UCLA opener in 2017 moved from Saturday to Sunday

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Grab your calendars as there’s been a change to your opening(ish) weekend college football agenda.

Texas A&M road trip to UCLA is one of a handful of high-profile games that will help launch the 2017 season Labor Day weekend.  The game, which will be played at the famed Rose Bowl, had been originally scheduled for Saturday, Sept. 2.  However, it was announced Wednesday that the game will be pushed back to Sunday, Sept. 3.

The game will kick off at either 7:30 or 8 p.m. ET, with the actual time being determined at a later date.

This year’s game will serve as the back-end of a home-and-home series between the two schools.  The Aggies claimed a 31-24 win over the Bruins in overtime last season in College Station.

The 2017 season will actually commence the weekend of Aug. 26 with five games featuring FBS teams, including Stanford against Rice in Australia and Colorado State opening their new on-campus stadium against Oregon State.  The first full weekend kicks off the following Thursday — Ohio State-Indiana highlights that day’s lean slate — and continues with a handful of games the next day — hello Colorado-Colorado State, Washington-Rutgers and Utah State-Wisconsin among others.

The first full Saturday features the likes of Alabama-Florida State, Florida-Michigan, West Virginia-Virginia Tech, LSU-BYU, Louisville-Purdue, Cal-North Carolina, Maryland-Texas and South Carolina-North Carolina State squaring off Sept. 2.

A&M-UCLA is the only Sunday game, while Tennessee and Georgia Tech will close out the weekend at the brand-new Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta Labor Day night that Monday.