With Penn State still reeling from the findings of the Freeh Report as well as the prospect of an NCAA "death penalty" and countless lawsuits on the horizon, college sports programs are taking steps to make sure that a similar situation never happens on their campus.
"The lesson here is clear: Penn State did not have institutional control when it came to concealing horrific truths about their program," said a member of the Alabama board of trustees. "If they did have institutional control, these secrets never would have been exposed. At Alabama we must do better."
Other top-level programs have already begun taking steps to avoid Penn State's fate.
"I have ordered that all e-mails between school executives and representatives of the athletic department dating back to the early 1990s when we got e-mail at the school be destroyed," said USC president C. L. Max Nikias. "I don't even want to pretend to think about what is in them. They probably read like a horror script."
USC is just one of several dozen universities that have destroyed all e-mails since the Freeh Report was released. Ohio State has destroyed all e-mail and set fire to all the computers throughout its administration and athletic offices.
"We have also hired a Director of Scandal and Secret Management," said Ohio State president E. Gordon Gee. "He — or she, it's a secret — will work with staffers to institute protocols and standards that will make sure none of our dirty laundry ever is revealed by an investigation. It's simply the right thing to do."
SEC commissioner Mike Slive has taken perhaps the most proactive approach, announcing that SEC security officers have received an order to "shoot on sight" any investigators spotted on campus.