Blog Entry

Is this it for Jim Tressel?

Posted on: March 25, 2011 12:02 pm
Edited on: March 25, 2011 5:39 pm
ANAHEIM, Calif. -- Gene Smith is supposed to be here in Anaheim on Saturday. As chairman of the men's basketball committee, it is his duty to make the rounds during the NCAA tournament.

Arizona and UConn play Saturday for the right to go to the Final Four. Don't keep a seat warm for Smith. He is also Ohio State's athletic director, which makes him a bit preoccupied these days.

Friday's revelation  that Jim Tressel forwarded emails to a mentor of quarterback Terrelle Pryor might be the deal-breaker for the Buckeyes coach. Remember, these are the emails that he wouldn't share with his superiors because Tressel was worried about "privacy" issues.

Apparently the emails weren't sensitive enough to keep from a 67-year-old owner of a Jeanette, Pa., glass company. It's hard to envision Tressel lasting any longer as this coverup builds. It's only a matter of time and definition -- when the coach will leave and what it will be called. Firing? Resignation? It doesn't really matter at this point.

Here's why Friday's news is so damning: If you remember at the March 8 press conference, Tressel was asked by Yahoo! Sports' Dan Wetzel if the coach had shared the emails with anyone else. As Tressel started to say yes, Smith intervened saying that couldn't be discussed, that there was an ongoing investigation.

Reminds us once again that the cover up is always worse than the crime.

This particular situation doesn't necessarily reflect badly on Pryor or Ted Sarniak, who was well known during the quarterback's recruiting process as a mentor. It was to the point, according to a source, that recruiters were dealing with Sarniak more than his high school coach. I was in Jeanette during that recruiting process and went to interview Sarniak at his Jeanette Glass Company offices. It was unannounced because I couldn't track him down on the phone. I was never able to find him.

The school vetted the relationship between Pryor and Sarniak, according to the Columbus Dispatch .

"He's [Sarniak] not a bad guy and he's got money," a person close to Pryor told me. "I don't think he did it [mentored Pryor] for the money."

This is more about Tressel. On the surface, he not only withheld information regarding -- let's not forget -- a federal investigation from his superiors. He also went off the reservation in sharing the emails with a person outside the university. Not even a parent -- a "mentor." Let's be clear: A glass company owner in western Pennsylvania apparently knew Pryor's name had popped up during a federal investigation before Ohio State's president or athletic director.

Poor Gene Smith. His basketball team is driving for the Final Four. That Final Four is a week away and Smith is in charge of it, the NCAA's top moneymaker. But those issues probably aren't in the top five in his mental Rolodex at the moment. We'll know for sure if there is an empty seat at courtside Saturday at the Honda Center. 


Since: Jul 26, 2009
Posted on: March 29, 2011 12:50 pm

Is this it for Jim Tressel?

I appreciate you responding in a manner of discussion rather than simply bashing my opinion, which you may not fully share.  I see your point of view in the matter, as you feel more punishment is required because you feel Tressel responsible for the infraction.  My take is that sufficient penalties have been placed due to this being a case where I didn't feel Tressel created the situation, rather it was more of a reactionary role he played.  If the NCAA agrees with your take on the matter than it would absolutely be comparable to Tennessee's situation with Pearl.  In both cases it would show a head coach lied to the NCAA in order to gain a competitive advantage for their team, so whatever sanctions 1 school and coach receives should apply to the other as well.  Again, I'm not sure that is my take on the situation, but it will be interesting to see how the NCAA views it.

Since: Jan 17, 2008
Posted on: March 29, 2011 11:59 am

Is this it for Jim Tressel?

Your schedule is so lame that without the 5 and the vest you might still win - with all your cheatin' ways and  all players playing and the vest coaching - you'd be hard pressed to survive a REAL conference schedule!  ie:  SEC  Ya'll make me laugh - Thanks!.......   GO GAMECOCKS!!!!!

Give me a break, Gamecockrw!  Let's just take a look at OSU's "lame" schedule.  During the 5 game suspension period, OSU plays @ Miami, Colorado and Michigan St.  Yes, the first two games are gimme's (Akron & Toledo), but those last 3 are respectable foes.  Going down to Miami will be no easy task, Colorado is a mediocre opponent that OSU should beat, and Mich St will be a tough one.  To go a step further, when OSU gets the key starters back, they will be facing a tough road trip to Nebraska with no game experience.  Given the circumstances, I would not be surprised if OSU loses 2-3 of it's first 6 games.  The second half of the season, OSU faces tough games vs Wisconsin, Penn St and @ Michigan (just watch...UM will be much stronger this year), plus the game @ Illinois will be no gimme.  By my count OSU faces 5-6 tough games (@ Miami is borderline), a pair of mediocre opponents and 4 easy games.

I'll give S Carolina some props for having a bit more difficult schedule.  By my count SC has 4-5 tough games (@ UGA, Auburn, Florida, Clemson and maybe @ Tenn), 4 mediocre opponents (ECU, Navy, @ Miss St and @ Ark), and 3 easy games (Vandy, UK and The Citadel).  I see this as a bit more difficult than OSU's schedule, but not significantly different.  However, SC's schedule is significantly more difficult than some other SEC schools.  If you doubt me, take a look at Bama's cake schedule (3-4 tough games, 3-4 mediocre and 5 pushovers).

Since: Jan 17, 2008
Posted on: March 29, 2011 10:11 am

Is this it for Jim Tressel?

Dodd is not the guy that pulled all of this cover up crap,  tressel the one that pulled this stunt, how is Dodd leading the lynch mob? the guy is just posting what is going on.

Lsutigers66:  In no way do I deny what Tressel did was wrong, and it is up to OSU and the NCAA to work out what level of punishment is appropriate.  Dodd is not just some guy posting what is going on.  Like it or not (and whether he deserves it or not), Dodd is viewed as a credible sportswriter by the mainstream media.  At times, he does do solid journalism.  At other times (and this is one of them), he writes in a highly slanted manner to support his agenda, with the goal of stirring up controversy which results in hit points on this website.  He is basically a flamethrower.

So you ask, "how is Dodd leading the lynch mob?".  Did you not read his column?  The entire column is nothing but laying out an argument as to why Tressel should either resign or be fired.  Dodd has written several columns on the subject, and never once does he even remotely explore the possibility that Tressel could have been acting responsibly.  Nor has he touched on anything remotely close to a sympathetic view of the situation.  A responsible journalist should explore both sides of a subject.  Instead, every one of Dodd's columns portrays Tressel and OSU in the worst possible light.  Dodd's mind is made up, and as he writes for a pro-SEC network's website, his agenda is to maximize the negative attention on OSU, Tressel and the Big Ten (after all, he was looking for heads to roll in Iowa a month ago).  Why?  Because if this story is grabbing all the headlines, it diverts attention away from any wrongdoing in the SEC (and there is plenty of that too).

Since: Jan 26, 2011
Posted on: March 29, 2011 9:04 am

Is this it for Jim Tressel?

You have a really awesome schedule with the likes of Vandy, The Citadel, East Carolina. You play two teams that finished in the top 25 last year. You'll probably lose to both of those teams. People in glass houses .....

Since: Jan 25, 2007
Posted on: March 29, 2011 2:35 am

Is this it for Jim Tressel?

"For example, lets say you in high school a group gets together and gets drunk.  You were interrogated about it, and when asked, nope nobody was drinking.  What they were doing was illegal, it broke the rules and if caught they could expect punishment.  But you saw it (right or wrong) as no big deal and lied about."

the thing is, is jim tressel is a 50 some year old coach. hes not a teen. yeah when i was a teenager i did alot of dirt myself. but i wasnt a head coach at a major university that parents trusted me with their kids. to not only play football but teach them about integrity. teach them to be young men......i just dont see how this looks so good. teaching kids to cover it up?

spin it how you want. jim tressel knew what he was doing. hes been a coach toooo long. he covered it up and now he has to pay for it.

stop comparing this issue to auburn and USC or michigan. that doesnt make it right just because other programs are supposedly cheating. if emails came out tomorrow proving cam newton and his dad got money, it would be all over the place. then do you think the auburn fans would say..."oh gee dodd why are you writing about us? such and such is dirty also." blah blah blah

all jim tressel did was show that he teaches his kids to lie. cover-up! he is the leader of them kids. he needs to set a better example. there is no thing called snitching or having someones back WHEN YOUR THE COACH!!!!!

Since: Mar 28, 2011
Posted on: March 28, 2011 9:34 pm

Is this it for Jim Tressel?

Dodd, I almost never see eye-to-eye with you because you are the epitome of the typical Buckeye hater, but I find myself unable to dispute you and defend Tressel any longer and while I do not advocate that he be fired, I think it is a real possibility and I won't be shocked at all if is does happen.

Here is my take on the Tressel situation:

Since: Dec 2, 2009
Posted on: March 28, 2011 9:08 pm

Is this it for Jim Tressel?

On second thought maybe you are right, FIRE JIM TRESSEL.  If Tressel is fired, what do you think it'll accomplish?  Do you think the Buckeye program will collapse?  Oh, it may be down a few years but it'll be back in time and very well may not even skip a beat.  So maybe you are right, go ahead and fire Tressel so we can get off the topic of Ohio State and move onto the next scandal so that we can analyze that one ad nausem.  

See...who is missing the point?!  College football is corrupt and the only ones that keeps happy are those like Dodd as it gives them something to continue to write about.  It sells papers and gets web site clicks all in pursuit of advertising dollars.  So its Ohio State now, it was Auburn, Michigan, and North Carolina, not too long ago USC and Tennessee.  Haven't heard from Florida State, Miami, or Oklahoma in a while so it may be their time soon....its not if, its when.  So either get behind cleaning it up 100% (impossible I say) or see it for what it is and cheer your favorite team while they are on the field, hoping that you won't be the next one embarrassed.......

Since: Dec 2, 2009
Posted on: March 28, 2011 8:49 pm

Is this it for Jim Tressel?

Thank you, I will paint it with any brush I choose. 

Let me ask you as question....have you EVER in any circumstances lied on behalf of another human being in order to lessen the punishment that they might receive or avoid punishment altogether IF you felt that the so-called crime was meaningless in the overall context of life?  For example, lets say you in high school a group gets together and gets drunk.  You were interrogated about it, and when asked, nope nobody was drinking.  What they were doing was illegal, it broke the rules and if caught they could expect punishment.  But you saw it (right or wrong) as no big deal and lied about.  Have you ever 'had somebody's back' in that fashion (or something similar). 

Consider many big time recruits want to play for a coach at a big time university that they think MIGHT chunk them under the bus if the road gets a little rocky (consider where a lot of these players come from and the environment from which many of them are extracted).  No coach can survive long gaining a rep for bailing on his players.

Again folks, I am not saying that any of this is right, I am simply asking for some perspective here.  Take off the ole rose colored glasses.  College football is full of rule breakers that, well break the rules.  We enable them.  If ANY of you are serious about following the rules, the next time your favorite team is caught doing ANY rule breaking I expect you to turn in your season tickets, sell your tailgating kit, and spend quality time with the wife on nice fall Saturdays as well as DEMANDING the firing of your coach.  If you won't do that, then you are a hypocrite.  Just admit it for what it is, you want your team to win, you like to believe they are honest (but deep down you don't really care how they get it done just don't get caught) just win baby.  Well OSU caught got, so all y'all who live in glass houses want to start chunkin the rocks....

Tressel was wrong, the players were wrong, they got caught breaking the rules and should be punished.  Should that include Tressel losing his job......considering what is involved and considering it took place in college football no I don't think so.  But if it'll help you sleep at night and make you think all is well in the world of the NCAA, then so be it.....

Since: Dec 2, 2009
Posted on: March 28, 2011 8:28 pm

Is this it for Jim Tressel?

Which point is that?  That Tressel acted in a corrupt fashion in the midst of an utterly corrupted (and corrupting system)?  Is that the point that I missed? 

Since: Mar 28, 2011
Posted on: March 28, 2011 8:21 pm

Is this it for Jim Tressel?

Paint it with any brush you choose, in his leadership role Tressel is supposed to lead by example.  The example he chose to set for his student athletes is that if you get caught......LIE.  Regardless of the severity of the original misdeeds by his players he chose to lie and attempt to cover the matter up.  "Having one's back" is much different than lying and cheating on behalf of members of your team.  "Having one's back" would more appropriately be standing beside them and vouching for them as they took their medicine.  Showing the rest of the team that individual bad behavior is shared by the rest of the team (in this case in the form of sanctions by the NCAA.)
On the original infractions committed by the players themselves, they took items that were given to them as members of the Ohio State football team as an award not eligible to any other Ohio State student.  Those awards were then converted to cash and that cash was not available to any other Ohio State student.  The awards became cash for play and by any stretch is the most aggregious violation of NCAA rules.  The part of the story I'm interested in hearing is how much money was paid to these students for the merchandise sold.  My guess is that there was much more money tendered than the individual items were worth

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