The NCAA crackdown on Penn State for its handling of the Jerry Sandusky scandal did not sit well with former Virginia coach George Welsh, an ex-PSU assistant coach under Joe Paterno and Rip Engle.
"I think the NCAA sanctions were way too harsh," he said. "I just don't understand that, but it's done, and I don't think there will be a retrial."
He believes the scholarship reductions will be tough for new coach Bill O'Brien to overcome.
"I think you can live with 15 grants a year," he said. "But it's going to be very difficult to live with a total of 65. It doesn't leave a lot of room for mistakes, which you always have. I just hope they can sustain some kind of semblance of winning and keeping that tradition alive."
Welsh watched part of last week's game at Virginia with PSU Athletic Director Dave Joyner and Associate Athletic Director Fran Ganter.
Both played at Penn State when Welsh was a Nittany Lion assistant coach (1963-72) before he left to become head coach at Navy and later Virginia.
"Fran Ganter found me in the [Virginia] president's box and invited me into the visiting AD's box," he said.
Welsh declined to further discuss the sanctions or the scandal.
"I've been asked, and I'm not making any comments," he said. "I just don't think it's appropriate."
His last contact with the Penn State staff had been at the 2006 Orange Bowl when he spent four days with former colleagues and friends, including Paterno.
- Neil Rudel