Blog Entry

Ohio State needs to part ways with Tressel

Posted on: May 7, 2011 1:00 pm
Edited on: May 7, 2011 1:06 pm
 

Posted by Tom Fornelli

Over the last decade he's gone 106-22 with seven Big Ten titles and a national championship. Against Michigan, he's led his team to a 9-1 record, and has sent countless players from his school on to the NFL. All are wonderful accomplishments that make sure his name belongs beside the great Woody Hayes as one of the best football coaches in Ohio State history.

Unfortunately that name, Jim Tressel, will likely evoke some other images besides on field success years from now. Much like so many people remember Woody Hayes' name for the time he punched a player to put an end to his career, Jim Tressel's legacy could face the same kind of fate.

Now a lot of people will remember Tressel for his seeming lack of control or his flaunting the rules over the last year. First there were the revelations that Tressel's players had been selling and trading merchandise for discounts at a tattoo parlor, which was only made worse when we found out that Tressel knew about it months before Ohio State reported it to the NCAA.

That story, deservingly, put a huge target on Jim Tressel. It was a blatant and unacceptable skirting of the rules by the head coach. One, that if done by any other college football coach in the country without the accomplishments of Tressel, would have resulted in that coach being fired. But not at Ohio State where the school's president, E. Gordon Gee, was too busy making jokes about whether or not Tressel would fire him.

I don't think Gee or many others at Ohio State are still laughing.

Not with the story that broke on Saturday morning involving a couple of Columbus-area car dealerships, one salesman and a lot of Ohio State players and family members buying cars. Now, this isn't a situation that can be placed solely on the shoulders of Jim Tressel, but the entire compliance department of the Ohio State University. I mean, it's possible that the Committee on Infractions could find out that Ohio State players received discounts on numerous cars, and that Ohio State's compliance department approved of the purchases. That is the kind of thing that happens before the NCAA says those words that no school in this country ever wants to hear.

Lack of institutional control.

While it may not be fair to pin the blame for this latest Buckeye mishap squarely on Tressel's sweatervest, the fact is that right now, the best thing for Ohio State to do would be part ways with their head coach. He needs to go, and as I've already said, he already deserves to be fired for the way he handled "Tatgate."

There always has to be a fall guy. In sports, in business, in politics, in just about every walk of life. As the public face of Ohio State football, Tressel is that fall guy. This latest compliance disaster may not be his fault, but by firing Tressel, Ohio State could save itself some larger sanctions from the NCAA.

More on Ohio State

Make no mistake, there will be sanctions coming from the NCAA and the COI. If USC could be held responsible for Reggie Bush's car, then you have to think Ohio State will be as well. When the NCAA does get ready to come down on Ohio State, if it sees that Jim Tressel is still the head coach and has survived, it will look like Ohio State is sticking a certain finger in the air at the NCAA, the COI and college football in general.

From outside the NCAA perspective, the longer Tressel sticks in Columbus, the longer the media will continue digging into any other possible transgressions that may have taken place under Tressel's watch. As long as he is there, there will be media scrutiny, and as we've seen in recent months, the media has a tendency to be a better watchdog than the NCAA itself. And who knows what is left to be uncovered? Considering we first began hearing about questionable behavior at Ohio State under Tressel with Maurice Clarett in 2003, you'd be naive to think that these cars and those free tattoos were the only times that Buckeye football players possibly broke NCAA rules over the last eight years.

There are a lot of dark clouds over Columbus right now, and they won't be going anywhere for a while. Still, the sun is going to break through at some point, and the sooner Ohio State says goodbye to Jim Tressel, the sooner the sun will reappear.

 

Comments

Since: Oct 8, 2009
Posted on: May 10, 2011 1:18 am
 

Ohio State needs to part ways with Tressel

I start by stating that I bleed Scarlet and Gray.  And I admit, when the Tatt-5 news broke, I was skeptical at first and stood by the coach that had kept a very clean record (save for Maurice Clarrett who we all dealt with for far too long).  But I am sick of it all.  I am disgusted and appalled and ashamed.  This is a University that has long standing traditions of pride, honor and integrity.  And now look where we stand.  I am not so naïve as to believe that there is a single school that out there that doesn’t have any dirt under their fingernails, they all bend/break rules and push the limits of what’s allowed, and usually it all gets ignored because, after all, the NCAA is a business.  That is why Cam Newton was allowed to continue playing, that is why Ohio State’s players were allowed to play in the Sugar Bowl.  Ratings equals money.

I have no idea what is going to come of all of this, but I think it’s time we say goodbye to Jim Tressel.  I loved the 106-22 record, the 9-1 record against Michigan, the 7 Big Ten titles, the 6-4 Bowl record (5-3 in BCS bowl games), the National Championship…  LOVED it!!  But enough is enough.  The longer the University stands by Tressel, the more they tell the world, but more importantly their faithful that the very foundations of what makes the school so great mean less than winning football games.  I will continue to wear my school’s colors proudly, with complete faith that they will right the ship.  The best thing to do now is accept the punishment for the rules that were broken, correct the problems (however deep they may run), and close this terrible chapter that has come to be.

Although I may be a heart-broken, die-hard fan of my former University, I remain true and optimistic. You have to have rainy days to enjoy the sunny days.  Despite my disappointment in the disaster that’s been for THE Ohio State University, I still can’t find a better way to end this than: GO BUCKS!!




Since: Mar 11, 2011
Posted on: May 9, 2011 9:05 pm
 

Ohio State needs to part ways with Tressel

As much as I hate to admit it, you are totally right.  As an OSU fan, its time to face the painful truth and deal  with the consequences.  It won't be any fun, but it is the only to get back on the right track.  This sucks.



Since: Mar 28, 2009
Posted on: May 9, 2011 8:59 pm
 

Ohio State needs to part ways with Tressel

The O-lie-O State Community College!!! ..............



UofM alum having fun as well....LMAO.................. 
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Since: Aug 2, 2010
Posted on: May 9, 2011 3:07 pm
 

Ohio State needs to part ways with Tressel

....Sigh....

I understand that every buckeye fan is hoping upon hoping that this all boils over and football can begin again, but it's time to stand back and look at this from the outsider's view... You know the view, its the one you had when looking at the SEC programs last year and the MANY different things that were coming out of those programs.  I read your comments - Death Penatly, Lack of Institutional Control, "You know the rules... you broke them", etc etc etc.  It was many OSU fan's that were throwing these stones. 

The SEC fans fought back (cause they love a good debate), saying that "this happens at every school", "it's not the schools fault to 'baby sit", "Everyone is out to stop their success"...  You called them out and called them dillusional fans. 

Irony sucks!

So, I ask you - Take the medicine.  It's time to step back and look at this outside of the Buckeye blood that runs through your veins.  No media person (outside of those guys from Michigan) are out to bring you down; the NCAA is not trying to knock you down a notch; OSU (the vest, the players, the Athletic Department, etc) is NOT innocent.  This is the time you look on and pray that OSU cleans house, starts fresh, and get's on the NCAA's good side.  Because if they keep turning a blind side to the allegations - You'll be complaining for several years as OSU rebuilds!  

  



Since: Jul 28, 2009
Posted on: May 9, 2011 2:49 pm
 

Ohio State needs to part ways with Tressel

tOSU will not fire J.T.  He may resign, but they wont fire him for sure.  Again, tOSU will keep on beating UM and making millions for the NCAA after its all said and done nothing will have changed. Keep on hating haters. Cool




Since: Aug 23, 2006
Posted on: May 9, 2011 2:47 pm
 

Ohio State needs to part ways with Tressel

Hey don't worry O$U fans the great an respectable Bobby Knight will defend you and your coach again, after all Mr. Knight knows all about class.




Since: Sep 29, 2006
Posted on: May 9, 2011 2:15 pm
 

Self Entitled Fans

As a casual college sports fan that likes and follows the Big Ten I just can't believe how many OSU fans are still blindly showing their support to this guy. The issue is not whether or not Tressel is responsible for those players doing what they did, rather that he knew about it and covered it up so he could continue using those players in an attempt to win games. In essence what he did was WORSE than what the players did because he is in a position of authority and used his power to show those players that even when they did break the rules that it would be ok because they were good football players.

For years Tressel and OSU consistently bring in top 5 recruiting classes and no one ever wonders how. In today's college football environment it is nearly impossible to do this without having the rules broken in regards to recruiting. No OSU fans questioned this, they just kept celebrating the wins. Congratulations OSU fans...when you go down you go down with guns blazing!



Since: Nov 19, 2006
Posted on: May 9, 2011 10:28 am
 

Another Ohio State fan that doesn't get it

This has absolutely nothing to do with players "selling trinkets and free tatoos (sic)".  That issue has already been dealt with and is off the table. This investigation is about a head coach's integrity or lack thereof, and his willingess to "win at all costs" which includes lying to the governing body of the sport he coaches.




Since: May 7, 2011
Posted on: May 8, 2011 12:39 pm
 

Ohio State needs to part ways with Tressel

Love the way tOSU fans characterize what went on with Tressell as "a mistake". As in the man made a mistake. Not a man lieing to the NCAA. Not once, but several times. As in Tressel made a mistake. In not telling his superiors- the Athletic Director, the Compliance Department or the President of tOSU-anything.....for seven whole long months. Even when the Justice Department came a'calling to ask questions. That's right, Ohio State fans, it was just "a mistake". Something that your Head Ball Coach conveniently put out of his mind. Even thought he knew what the rules where. He managed to sign off on paperwork so he could play his players all season long, even though he knew they were ineligible. Oooops, just a mistake. Week after week after week. What makes it so incredible to those of us in the rest of the country (and yes, the South) is the Tressel piled lie on top of lie on top of lie...week after week after week, until the whole mess came crashing down on top of him. And THEN your President gets up in front of cameras and makes the worst statement we've ever heard a college President make. AND, as we're subsequently told, brother Tressel was supposed to apologize for his sins at that press conference, and couldn't even muster up the stones to do that! THIS is a man who would write books about character? THIS is a man who would be held out as a role model to young men? But that's ok, you good citizens of Columbus, you keep drinking that Kool-Aid and telling yourself it was "just a mistake". And the rest of the country will just shake its head in disbelief, as we wait for someone, ANYONE, to do the right thing, be it the NCAA with a "show-cause" or even Dr Gee, if he finally gets around to reading the contract that specifically spells out a firing offense.



Since: Dec 29, 2008
Posted on: May 8, 2011 11:10 am
 

Ohio State needs to part ways with Tressel

People seem to be missing the fact that Tressel is a coach...not a babysitter.  For some reason the media wants to pin everything on Tressel, like he's a wolf in sheep's clothing???  He probably had less than 1% involvement in any of these offenses yet he's the one everyone targets.  This stuff goes on at every big college, not saying its right but to say OSU is the only offender is ludicrous, they are just the ones in the spotlight right now.  OSU needs to revamp thier athletic department so they can detect these things as soon as they occur because its a disgrace to OSU fans, but that doesnt have anything to do with firing Tressel.  He's paid to coach, and he does it well.  To pin the mistakes of others on his shoulders is just unfair.  Yes he failed to notify the NCAA and he should be disciplined, but he was not the one telling these students to sell memoribilia or get free cars from a dealership.  Bottom line is that Tressel is not a babysitter, these players need to grow up, act like adults and play by the rules.



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