Ohio State added a 24th and final member to its recruiting class yesterday, but that signee won't arrive in Columbus without some degree on controversy.
That signee is Chris Carter, the 6'6", 350-pound offensive lineman who on Signing Day, Feb. 1, was arrested on suspicion fondling multiple underage girls while pretending to measure them for ROTC uniforms. The arrest threw Carter's future with the Buckeyes into doubt, but a lack of evidence resulted in the case being dismissed shortly afterwards.
After "three weeks of looking into the situation," Jim Tressel elected to overlook the arrest and welcome Carter with open arms :
"He has had a great support system at home, as well as at his high school. ... They truly believe that Chris will have great success on and off the field at Ohio State."Whether fair or not, Tressel will have to hope that makes good on that promise of "great success off the field," since few players in Columbus (if any) will be under as much scrutiny for their off-field behavior. But if Carter can prove the arrest and suspicion is truly behind him, the Buckeyes will be getting a huge building block for an offensive line that has occasionally struggled against top-flight competition in recent years.