Stop me if you have heard this before. The NCAA says a lawsuit filed against them is fatally flawed and wants it to be thrown out. This time the NCAA is making this comment about a lawsuit filed by the family of the late Joe Paterno, the former Penn State football coach.
According to the Associated Press, the NCAA says the Paterno family lawsuit, filed in a Centre County court, contains ”sundry misdirected complaints.” The NCAA believes the plaintiffs do not have the grounds to challenge the consent decree the NCAA had Penn State agree to prior to issuing sanctions against the program in the fallout of the Jerry Sandusky scandal. The NCAA slammed the university with a four-year postseason ban, massive scholarship reductions, probation, the vacating of over 100 wins from the record books and a $60 million fine designed to go toward child abuse awareness and prevention programs.
Earlier this week the NCAA agreed to restore a significant number of scholarships to Penn State’s football program, but at this point there has been no indication any other sanction terms will immediately be addressed. Because Penn State president Rodney Erickson signed the consent decree with the NCAA, the university was stripped of any right to challenge the sanction terms. The Paterno family opted to take on the fight on behalf of the university. The NCAA says the family along with faculty, former Penn State players and coaches are not the right plaintiffs for any legal battle related to the sanctions.
The NCAA has also been challenged by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania in a separate, yet similar, lawsuit seeking to overturn all terms of the sanctions. There is also a separate lawsuit challenging the distribution of the $60 million fine money charged to Penn State by the NCAA. The NCAA has said all of these lawsuits are out of order.