The NCAA received another serious blow to its credibility today. In court documents filed Thursday in the Paterno lawsuit, Oregon State President and then-NCAA Executive Committee Chairman Ed Ray admitted to not actually reading the Freeh Report — the entire basis for the NCAA sanctions — prior to sanctioning Penn State in 2012.
In his testimony in the Paterno Family’s ongoing case, Ray admitted that he was unaware that he needed to prep for anything related to the Freeh Report before the organization’s executive board met to discuss possible sanctions on the University. Instead, Ray spent time in Hawaii where he was unable to read the entire report. Ray said he returned on the 19th or 20th and approved the consent decree on the 21st without actually reading the report that was the basis of those sanctions. It’s worth noting that the entire Freeh report was viewable and downloadable online for the entirety of Ray’s trip and two days before.
“So I may have looked at the executive summary when it came out, and certainty read press accounts, but I don’t believe I read or was able to download and get a copy of the full report until after I got back, which was about the time of the press conference [announcing the Consent Decree], or something shortly thereafter,” Ray said to Wick Sollers, the Paterno family lawyer.
Ray’s complete testimony, included in a footnote, is below:
UPDATE 6:50 p.m. — Upon a deeper reading of the deposition, it appears that Ray not only failed to read the Freeh report before his committee voted to impose the consent decree, but he didn’t even read the actual consent decree itself. Ray has previously stated that the consent decree — which he apparently did not and has not read — received unanimous support from himself and the infractions committee.
The entire filing can be found below. We are currently reviewing the documents for more details and will update this post accordingly.