LaVar Arrington, a former NFL and Penn State linebacker, has spoken out against Jerry Sandusky in the Penn State scandal.
The two-time All-American star from Penn State initially refused to comment on the allegations against the former defensive coordinator, who has been charged with more than 40 counts of sexual assault on young boys. But following Sandusky's interview with Bob Costas, Arrington angrily responds in defense of his alma mater and the students and children affected by Sandusky's alleged actions.
IBTimes has compiled excerpts of his comments as seen below.
Arrington first spoke on The Fan 106.7 FM in Washington on Nov. 7:
It's an ugly situation... I love Penn State. There's a love affair that I have with that institution that goes far beyond any one person... When I got to Penn State, I guess the reason why I gravitated to Jerry Sandusky, just, outside of the obvious of him being the professor of 'Linebacker U,' -- and that was why you go there, to be a part of that school, I wanted to be a part of that tradition.
The one thing that really stood out and stuck with me was that I always saw him giving back. I always saw him as being a part of the community. I always saw him working with kids and caring about them. So when I heard this information, when these allegations hit, when all these things started being reported, it totally, and I say totally, took me off-guard. I was moved to tears. I looked at my children because immediately I started thinking back to all the moments that I had at Penn State and all the moments I had with him. And just thinking to myself how hard I worked to please him, and how hard I work to please Joe [Paterno], and how hard we all worked to please these guys, and then to have this happen.
Someone that I related to my mother... I look at what has taken place, not knowing everything, not knowing how it's all going to pan out, not knowing what this has to do with Joe or with Mr. [Tim] Curley or with the other fella that's the Treasurer of the school. Not knowing what's going to take place, I'm upset, I'm shocked and I'm disappointed. Disappointed that, no matter what the outcome is, there were so many lives that were affected and impacted the wrong way.
And so for me it's not only important -- and I know I'm speaking not only on behalf of myself but I'm speaking on behalf of every person who has ever went into a classroom at Penn State and has tried to do things the right way and what we call 'The Penn State way' why we're so proud to say we're Penn State-- the reason I'm speaking out is because that's how I feel. I feel it shouldn't be lost that the irresponsible acts and the nature of what these allegations are right now, I just hate for it to be what a lasting impression or a lasting legacy of [Penn State] because that institution has done so much. So many countless things in the community with kids, with adults, with education. Penn State has been at the forefront of doing things the right way.
The irresponsible nature of how this was handled, and the magnitude of what this represents, it's very disturbing. I'm ashamed of it. With that being said, for as much love as I had in my heart for that coaching staff -- because I followed Jerry [Sandusky], Jerry was our leader, Jerry was our undisputed and uncontested leader -- and now I sit here and I feel so empty. I feel a certain type of way that a person shouldn't have to feel.
At a candlelight vigil late last Friday, Arrington told Penn State students that they can move past the scandal.
Leave here today with the resolve and the understanding that you possess the power to change things. And I will be there with you and we should all be here with one another, because you know what, we are... love you guys.
Arrington also spoke out on Washington Post Sports Live on Tuesday. He said that alumni at Penn State have raised more than $250,000 to prevent child molestation and support groups for kids who have been molested.
After listening to Sandusky's response in an interview with Costas, Arrington said:
My stomach starts to turn just listening, I get queasy a little bit. I've maintained through the whole thing, I don't have a comment in regards to him, I'll address the situation about the children, my school, but as far as, I have no comment on him... There are the victims of the crime and then the victims of the people who had nothing to do with the actions of this man, [Sandusky]... for me, the outpouring of feelings and emotions surrounding all of this, I felt it was appropriate to be there and let the people in our community understand that this is not a situation to wallow and lay in the mess that has taken place. To me, I think you need to use this as a motivating factor, like I stated, a wake-up call, a call to action, these things were happening before the scandal took place, now all this does, is make it a better platform to make it bigger.
Later, Arrington spoke out angrily on The Fan 106.7 in reference to Sandusky's interview, making more concrete comments. He said:
You're pissed off because he has something to say, you're pissed off because he sounds like he's on something. You know what I'm pissed off about? He didn't say he was sorry to those kids. He didn't say he was sorry to the kids at Penn State. He didn't say he was sorry to the players, he didn't say was sorry to me, [to] us. He didn't say he was sorry to any of those people - 'it is what it is, duh da duh duh da duh. Wah wah wah.' That's what I'm pissed off about. Say you're sorry about everyone you put on this.
I've lost 10 pounds since this happened. I haven't slept. And I'm sure I'm one of many that has been directly impacted since this man's decision. You didn't apologize to one person, but you want to maintain your innocence... If you were going to come out and do an interview you'd say, 'Let the law of the land dictate what took place and what didn't take place. I just want to make sure that I apologize for all the people that freaking trusted you. And thought the world of you. And believed in you. If I'm making a statement, make that statement.
[Say] I'm sorry that I affected these kids lives and even if you're saying that you didn't do it say I'm sorry that I affected your lives. Something I did affected or impacted your life and I'm sorry for that'... I don't care what you think your actions were, because your actions have left a mess... Look at what has taken place since what you did has come out.