Getty Images

BlackAmericaWeb's Michael H. Cottman congratulates the African-American athletes who left the institution in the wake of its sex abuse scandal.

These former Penn State players  — all African-Americans — are part of a nine-player exodus, young athletes who decided to leave Penn State after former Penn State coach Jerry Sandusky was convicted of sexually abusing boys at the school and the NCAA levied a series of sanctions against Penn State, including a four-year ban on playing bowl games.

The NCAA also maintained that legendary Penn State coach Joe Paterno covered up for Sandusky to protect the university against shame and dishonor. Bluntly put, Paterno put football first and foremost — and the victims of Sandusky's sexual abuse became an after-thought.

Paterno's family says it will appeal the NCAA's ruling. Good luck with that …

I hope these young black men are successful with their new football teams — and successful in life. They should be commended for defying the critics, choosing their own paths, and showing the courage to put Penn State in their rear view mirrors.

Read Michael H. Cottman's entire piece at BlackAmericaWeb.

The Root aims to foster and advance conversations about issues relevant to the black Diaspora by presenting a variety of opinions from all perspectives, whether or not those opinions are shared by our editorial staff.