"I don't have any problem with discussing a system of evaluation of claims, so long as there is a right to go to court," said Williamsport lawyer Cliff Rieders, who has filed a "writ" in Philadelphia that initiated a lawsuit without filing a complaint that outlines the allegations. "I'm not generally in favor of giving up those rights unless there's some adequate quid pro quo."
Rieders said his client, who was not among the 10 victims in Sandusky's criminal case, was sexually abused by Sandusky over "several different summer seasons."
The school and its insurer, Blue Bell-based Pennsylvania Manufacturers' Association Insurance Co., have sued each other over coverage for Sandusky-related claims. The university is currently appealing a judge's decision to consolidate the cases in Philadelphia. The insurance dispute, along with pending criminal charges against two Penn State administrators, slowed the civil litigation timetable.
Tom Baker, a University of Pennsylvania law professor with expertise on the relationship between liability and insurance, said Penn State doesn't want the cases to go to trial, but might feel compelled to.
"If the plaintiffs are very unreasonable in the amounts of money they're demanding, you might be prepared to take that risk," Baker said. "Especially if you can do it one case at a time."
The potential for a drawn-out legal battle doesn't bother Harrisburg lawyer Ben Andreozzi, whose five clients include one who testified against Sandusky at the criminal trial. None has sued.
"If it's up to me, I would assume just file the lawsuit, take a bunch of depositions and hear what the jury thinks about it," Andreozzi said. "The sky's the limit on what the recovery could be in this case."
Penn State did contact him to offer his clients counseling, Andreozzi said.
Both sides will enter any settlement talks with some idea of the size of verdict awards and out-of-court settlements in similar cases, but evaluating the monetary value is a complicated process, and Anderson signaled he was not likely to jump at any offer.
"At this point there's nothing on the table, there's nothing off the table," he said. "What has to be done first is some measure of discovery and scrutiny, and that is further disclosure and exposure, before there can be closure."