Football strong? Cal U’s ‘team spirit’
Brutally beating a man unconscious is the latest allegation to tarnish California University of Pennsylvania’s football team, which for the past two years has become better known for some players’ skirmishes off the field with the law.
In response to charges against six teammates who allegedly ganged up on a West Chester man last week, then left the scene chanting “football strong,” Cal U interim President Geraldine Jones has ordered a review of the football program.
“I have told our Vulcan football players that we will strictly adhere to a zero-tolerance policy,” said Ms. Jones, who canceled last weekend’s Cal U game against Gannon University. Team play resumes Saturday.
But based on court records, some players’ “team spirit” should have been flagged years ago. Reportedly at least 19 players, past and present, have been arrested since 2012. All those charged, some facing repeat charges, should have been automatically benched upon their arrest.
Of the six teammates recently charged, three have prior arrests; two have pleaded guilty to disorderly conduct.
A person shouldn’t end up in a hospital with brain injuries, allegedly inflicted by members of the home team — some of whom have prior arrests — before the university takes notice. Forget sportsmanship. This is about human decency.
And if this sickening culture, on and off campus, is beyond cure, then there should be no Cal U football program.