Jon Ritchie Speaks About His Personal Interaction With Jerry Sandusky

ESPN’s Jon Ritchie personally knew Jerry Sandusky as a teenager and had a close relationship with the man accused of some of the most heinous crimes ever associated with a sports figure.  We make fun of the frivolous nature of First Take quite a bit, but this may be one of the most hard-hitting segments regarding the Sandusky case.  Given Ritchie’s personal relationship with Sandusky as a teenager and beyond, his shock, grief, and distress over the news is especially profound.  There are so many soundbytes worth pulling out of this segment and a few quotes from Ritchie are below.  But if you’ve been following this case, make sure you watch the entire ten minutes for some incredible perspective on this tragic story…


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On Sandusky…

“I loved him.  I thought that he was what I wanted to be when I was old enough to be that.”

On The Second Mile…

“When I first retired from professional football, my first thought was I should call Jerry and see if he’ll let me join the Second Mile.”

On rumors circulating as far back as 2009…

“There were rumors circling in 2009 in Pennslyvania… I think the general consensus where I lived was it was probably a disgruntled kid who had something in for Jerry.  Now, I think we all know that that is not the case.  That this is horrendous, horrifying, and tragic.”

On the tragedy…

“These tragedies out now have brought everyone to the darkest place… I can’t fathom sports right now.  I don’t even care about sports right now because this picture of what I thought was good has exploded.”

“This is just the beginning of the most horrific story in sports.”

“It was impossible for me to conceive that this took place.  This has caused me to reevaluate everything I think is real around me.  My reality was Jerry Sandusky was Mother Theresa and I know all those kids, all those victims felt the same way because that’s what he elicited in you.”

Matt Yoder

About Matt Yoder

Managing Editor of Awful Announcing and award winning sportswriter. Bloguin consigliere. The biggest cat in the whole wide world.