American Morning

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November 17th, 2011
11:45 AM ET

Penn State alumni group raises money for sexual abuse victims

The ongoing sex abuse scandal continues to haunt the Happy Valley. But now a group of dedicated Penn State alumni are looking to make the best of a tragic situation.

The ProudPSUforRAINN campaign is asking fellow alums for a $1 donation to go to RAINN – the Rape, Abuse, and Incest National Network.

Christine Romans talks with Laura Lettow, co-founder of the the group, about the origins of the campaign – and how successful it's been thus far.

Filed under: Penn State
November 16th, 2011
01:53 PM ET

Why do some fail to act in the face of atrocities?

In new emails just obtained by Allentown's "Morning Call" Newspaper, Penn State assistant football coach Mike McQueary claims that he did stop Jerry Sandusky's alleged rape of a young boy in 2002. He also says that he discussed the matter with the police.  This seems to contradict McQueary's grand jury testimony, which states that he only told Joe Paterno. Both McQueary and Paterno have been criticized for not properly informing authorities about Sandusky's actions.

Chrstine Romans speaks with clinical psychologist Jeff Gardere to try to understand why individuals choose to stay silent in the face of these kinds of atrocities.

Filed under: Penn State
November 15th, 2011
01:44 PM ET

Second Mile rep raised concerns about Penn State coach in 2008

Former Penn State assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky is speaking out for the first time. Sandusky told NBC's Bob Costas that he is innocent" of the sexual abuse charges. However, he admits to showing with young boys, hugging them, and touching their legs, but says their was no sexual intent.

But in a new report with the Harrisburg Patriot-News, one rep with the charity Second Mile had raised concerns in 2008 about Jerry Sandusky and his interaction with some of the boys in the group.

Carol Costello speaks with "Patriot News" reporter Sara Ganim on the new report and to get her thoughts on why Sandusky talking to the press now and how much deeper.

Filed under: Football • Penn State
November 15th, 2011
01:38 PM ET

Bissinger: Big-time college sports programs 'protect their own at all costs'

Former Penn State assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky insisted in an interview Monday night he is "innocent" of charges that he sexually abused young boys, denying to NBC's Bob Costas that he's a pedophile.

In a telephone interview for NBC's "Rock Center With Brian Williams," Sandusky admitted that some details in the graphic 23-page grand jury report released earlier this month are correct, including that he showered with young boys.

Some critics have blamed this scandal on the culture that surrounds big-time college sports programs like Penn State. 

Daily Beast sports columnist and author of "Friday Night Lights" Buzz Bissinger compares these institutions to the mafia. As he tells Christine Romans today on American Morning, these programs "protect their own at all costs."

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Filed under: Football • Penn State
November 11th, 2011
09:48 AM ET

Penn State stunned by scandal – two students explain the mood of the campus

Emotions are running high in Happy Valley as the ramifications of an ongoing child sex abuse continue to play out. Students have taken to the streets to protest a decision by the university to fire beloved long time football coach Joe Paterno. But some critics are wondering why Penn State students aren't showing more support for the victims of this tragedy.

Penn State seniors Dan Florencio and Davis Shafer explain Ali Velshi how their classmates are feeling about the scandal – and where they're directing their anger.

Filed under: Controversy • Penn State • Sports
November 11th, 2011
09:43 AM ET

Did a 'code of silence' keep the Penn State scandal under wraps?

Many questions remain unanswered in the ongoing Penn State child sex abuse scandal. But perhaps the most important is: Who knew about the alleged abuse of young boys on campus and why did were reports not filed?

Some of those familiar with collegiate athletics say the answers might have to do with a "code of silence" – an implicit agreement to keep quiet in order protect teammates and coaches, no matter the cost.

ESPN analyst and former MLB player Doug Glanville explains to Alina Cho how this code operates – and how it could have contributed to this tragedy.

Filed under: Controversy • Penn State • Sports
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