Masser stressed he was speaking for himself and not the board at large, and said he wants to be careful not to draw premature conclusions. But he said it now appears like "top administration officials and top athletic officials were involved in making the decision to not inform the proper authorities."
With prosecutors focused on the sex-abuse allegations against Sandusky, the trial isn't intended to yield evidence of a possible cover-up. That's the job of Louis Freeh, the former FBI director hired by the board of trustees to investigate the scandal. His report could be released in late summer.
Spanier, who has not been charged with any crime, did not respond to email and phone messages. His attorney did not return a phone call.
The law firm defending Curley and Schultz against charges they lied in their grand jury testimony and failed to report suspect abuse said in a statement this week they "conscientiously considered" McQueary's account and "deliberated about how to responsibly deal with the conduct and handle the situation properly." They did not respond to follow-up questions posed by the AP.
Masser said the Freeh investigation is helping Penn State get to the bottom of the scandal.
"I hope the truth comes out, and from a board standpoint it was Judge Freeh's investigation that found these emails that relate Spanier, Curley and Schultz to the suspected cover-up," he said. "I want the alumni to understand and the stakeholders to understand that this independent investigation is uncovering this information."
Sandusky was charged in November and December with more than 50 counts of abuse. The scandal brought disgrace to Penn State and led to the ousters of both Spanier and Paterno, the Hall of Fame coach who died in January at age 85.
The testimony of eight of the 10 alleged victims named in a grand jury report prompted disgust and revulsion from Penn State alumni and others who took to Twitter last week to express their dismay — and to call for the heads of anyone involved in concealing abuse. "Anyone who knew and didn't report should burn!" tweeted one.
The grim depictions of abuse also hit at least one former player hard.
The accuser known as Victim 4 told jurors that Sandusky let him wear star linebacker LaVar Arrington's jersey and gave him a magazine autographed by the former NFL All-Pro, who played at Penn State in the late 1990s.
Arrington apologized to the man a day after his testimony, writing in The Washington Post that he felt awful for having missed the warning signs.
"He always seemed mad or kind of distant. I remember distinctly asking him: 'Why are you always walking around all mad, like a tough guy?'" Arrington wrote. "I guess with everything that I had going on, it certainly wasn't a priority for me to try to figure him out."
Arrington continued, "I hate everything that has happened, and now I must admit I feel even worse, knowing what allegedly was happening so close to me, and that I was unaware."
Ann Tenbrunsel, a professor of business ethics at the University of Notre Dame, attributes the failure to stop Sandusky to a phenomenon she calls "motivated blindness," a tendency, whether subconscious or deliberate or sometimes both, to ignore unethical or even criminal behavior by others when you perceive it to be in your best interest to do so. Motivated blindness "means I don't probe, I don't ask, I don't believe," Tenbrunsel said. "I have evidence in front of me but choose to disregard facts."
Some people could have kept quiet about their suspicions because they wanted to protect Penn State and its beloved — and highly lucrative — football program, or their own jobs, she said. Others might not have wanted to believe the sainted Sandusky capable of the abuse he's now charged with.
"You have all kinds of examples of people who either did not notice, or when they did notice didn't engage in behaviors that would have stopped it because it wasn't in their best interests to do so," said Tenbrunsel, co-author of "Blind Spots," a book that explores why otherwise decent people sometimes fail to do the right thing.