Football: Ousted Penn State president Graham Spanier and his lawyers attacked a university-backed report on the Jerry Sandusky sex abuse scandal on Wednesday, calling it a “blundering and indefensible indictment” as they fired a pre-emptive strike while waiting to hear if he’ll be charged in the case.
Lawyer Timothy Lewis called Louis Freeh, the former FBI director and federal judge behind the report, a “biased investigator” who piled speculation on top of innuendo to accuse Spanier in a cover-up of early abuse complaints.
“The Freeh report, as it pertains to Dr. Spanier, is a myth. And that myth … ends today,” Lewis said at a downtown Philadelphia news conference.
Spanier did not attend. But he told media outlets in stories published hours later that he never understood the early complaints about Sandusky, who this year was convicted of molesting 10 boys, to be sexual.
“I’m very stunned by Freeh’s conclusion that — I don’t think he used the word ‘cover-up’; but he uses the word ‘concealed,”’ Spanier told The New Yorker magazine. “Why on earth would anybody cover up for a known child predator? Adverse publicity? For heaven’s sake! Every day I had to make some decision that got adverse publicity.”
Spanier told ABC that he was told only that Sandusky had been seen engaging in “horseplay” in a campus shower with a boy and he took that to mean “throwing water around, snapping towels.”
At the news conference, Lewis, also a former federal judge, complained that Freeh never interviewed key witnesses, ignored inconvenient facts and manipulated the truth.
Saints name Kromer interim head coach
NFL: The New Orleans Saints designated offensive line coach Aaron Kromer as the interim head coach for the first six regular-season games, when assistant head coach Joe Vitt will have to serve his suspension in connection with the NFL’s bounty investigation.
Vitt has been overseeing head coaching duties since Sean Payton’s full season suspension began in mid-April, but the Saints held off until Wednesday on a decision concerning who would become the figurehead of the coaching staff when Vitt had to step aside in Week 1.
• Vick says he’ll be ready: Quarterback Michael Vick told reporters he is “doing good, feeling better,” and there is no doubt he will be ready when the Philadelphia Eagles visit the Cleveland Browns in Week 1.
Vick didn’t practice Wednesday after bruising his ribs during a win at New England on Monday.
Tennessee rallies to reach U.S. final
Youth baseball: Tennessee scratched out two late runs to get to the U.S. final in the Little League World Series.
Cole Carter had an RBI single after Jake Rucker scored the tying run from second on a throwing error to give the boys from Goodlettsville, Tenn., a 4-3 victory over San Antonio.
Unbeaten Tennessee plays in the U.S championship game Saturday.
• Japan advances to international final: Strong pitching, solid defense and potent bats have carried the team from Tokyo to a berth in the international final at the Little League World Series following a 4-1 victory over Panama.
• Lawsuit settled: A New Jersey teenager left brain-damaged after being struck by a line drive off a metal bat while he was playing in a youth baseball game will receive $14.5 million to settle his lawsuit against the bat manufacturer, Little League Baseball and a sporting goods chain.
The settlement of Steven Domalewski’s lawsuit was announced in state Superior Court in Passaic County. The boy, now 18, lives in Wayne, N.J. His family had claimed the metal bat was unsafe because baseballs could carom off it at much faster speeds than wooden bats.
Domalewski was playing in a Police Athletic League game, but Little League was sued because the group certifies that specific metal bats are approved for — and safe for — use in games involving children.
Azarenka No. 1 seed for U.S. Open tennis
Miscellany: Top-ranked Victoria Azarenka will be seeded No. 1 at the U.S. Open, with 2006 champion Maria Sharapova at No. 3, and three-time winner Serena Williams at No. 4.
Azarenka is followed by No. 2 Agnieszka Radwanska, the runner-up to Williams at Wimbledon last month.
• Ching scores for Houston: Former Gonzaga University standout Brian Ching scored in the 12th minute to help Houston of the MLS defeat CD FAS 3-1 in a Champions League game at San Salvador, El Salvador.