Nightly News | July 23, 2012
>>> this is anne thompson . for decades they profited from the glory of penn state football . now businesses in state college will almost certainly pay a price for the pain.
>> these victims, my heart just breaks for them and their families.
>> reporter: tammy shuster owns a bed and breakfast 15 minutes from beaver stadium where an average of 101,000 people watched the nittany lions last season. a year ago, every room was sold out for home football games . not this year so far.
>> i feel very confident that alumni will still be coming to the games. fans will still be coming.
>> reporter: on a home football weekend, state college , population 42,000, mushrooms to the third largest city in the state, making the football team an economic powerhouse for the region.
>> a lot of businesses in the area, that's when they make their profit that's going to see them through the winter months. so it is crucial.
>> reporter: the team accounted for $50 million in direct spending for the county in 2009 according to a study commissioned by the university. the third most valuable program in college football last year now branded with the scarlet letter of scandal. linda is the co-owner of the american ale house.
>> used to be able to be proud to say i'm from state college , you know, penn state football . i'm not going to do that much at this point.
>> reporter: but with so much money at stake, some wonder if a change in culture is truly possible. a change that critics say must go far beyond state college and penn state .
>> i don't see it getting any better. they just announced a college football playoff that's going to be worth upwards of nearly 3/4 of a billion dollars so the money involved is only growing.
>> one sports economist i talked to said historically when programs are sanctioned sometimes donations to the programs actually go up as loyal alumni and boosters circle the wagon, but given this involved child abuse and not the typical infractions of selling tickets or accepting money, he says it's hard to know what will happen. but, brian, we should find out september 1st when penn state opens against ohio university .
>> tonight on the athletic department website there is the countdown to the day game, the first day of the season as if nothing happened. anne thompson , thank you for your reporting.