Ohio State’s players not stupid, but they are selfish

Hope everybody had a great Christmas! So what did we miss while we were gone spreading the Holiday cheer? Where in the world do you start?

1. Ohio State’s players aren’t stupid, but they are selfish: So a bunch of  Ohio State players, including quarterback Terrelle Pryor, will miss the first five games of the 2011 season because they sold and exchanged stuff for money and services. That’s a pretty stiff penalty and it’s likely a bunch of those guys will just turn pro and never serve the suspension. But please spare me the hand wringing and the gnashing of teeth about how the system is unfair. Two points:

**–It is an unfair system, yadda, yadda, yadda: We know that. We have always known that. There is a reasonable argument to be made that athletes should be able to generate some kind of income based on what they do and the value they provide to the school. But you don’t get to break the rule and THEN make the argument. Then all you’re doing is trying to rationalize behavior that has hurt the team to cover your own butt. Sometimes in life you have to be selfish. But admit that you did it for selfish reasons. Admit that you wanted the money or needed the money or felt you DESERVED the money. Then accept the consequences and move on.

**–I do not want to hear another adult say that the kids didn’t know the rules. Gene Smith is the athletics director at Ohio State. I have great deal respect for him and consider him to be a friend. But I can’t listen to another adult attribute rules breaking to a lack of knowledge of the rules.

Again, there is a good argument to be made about the validity and the fairness of the rule but here’s the deal. My mother just turned 78 years old and she knows a player can’t sell a jersey why he’s still in school. If you let these guys play in the Sugar Bowl because you don’t want to hurt a multi-million dollar game at this late date, then just say so. If the players thought the rule was stupid and felt they deserved something more because of their status, then just say so. But don’t plead ignorance. It just doesn’t fly any more.

 2. Will Georgia Tech run out of bodies against Air Force? Here is another reason why I could not be a coach. Georgia Tech was already short-handed on defense for today’s Independence Bowl with Air Force. Two starters and a reserve on defense were suspended last week for academic reasons. Now comes word that three more defensive players will have to sit out the first half of the game for missing curfew Friday night. Now Shreveport is a friendly town. My CBS buddy Tim Brando could live anywhere and he chose Shreveport as the place to raise his family. It’s a great place. But guys. You miss curfew in Shreveport? Seriously?

3. Is Caleb King destined to become another Patrick Pass? We learn today from Tim Tucker that Georgia running back Caleb King will miss Friday’s Liberty Bowl because he missed five “academic appointments.” I assume that is going to class or study hall. This marks the third game this season that King has missed on suspension. So now Georgia has a running back of modest (at best) ability, who can’t be bothered to do the academic side of his commitment after being suspended once already this season. There have been a lot of great running backs to come through Georgia. There have also been a bunch of running backs  who arrived in Athens with excessive hype and very average hearts. Caleb King is starting to look like the latter.

4. The coaching carousel sure did get quiet:  With much fanfare Florida hired Will Muschamp as its head coach on Dec. 4. Speculation immediately began that Muschamp would tap Alabama defensive coordinator Kirby Smart, his friend and also a former Georgia player, as his new DC. Then it got quiet and it looks like we won’t know anything until after the Jan. 1 bowls. Understand that everybody in the business is waiting for Muschamp to make his move. Then the ripple effect will start through the rest of the coaching fraternity. I wonder if Florida has a rule about the number of Georgia graduates the Gators can have on their staff?

5. Best rumor of the Holiday season: Jim Tressel to leave Ohio State: Something called ChicagoNow.com reported that Jim Tressel would be leaving as Ohio State’s coach after the Sugar Bowl game with Arkansas on Jan. 4. The website said that the Buckeyes recruits had been told that Tressel was leaving and that they should look elsewhere. Ohio State had to respond to knock down the rumors. Two things:

**–If the head coach at a place like Ohio State is going to leave suddenly, the recruits will be the LAST people to know because the school wants to try and hold the class together.

**–Could it possibly be that opposing recruiters were telling players that Tressel was going to leave hoping that somebody would pick up a rumor with no factual basis but run it anyway? Mission accomplished I guess.

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223 comments Add your comment

Tony B ROCKS!

December 27th, 2010
9:13 am

CalGatorBrotha

December 27th, 2010
9:19 am

Welcome back Tony B, yes these players know they broke the rules. The better thing they should have done was give the stuff to a friend or family to sell but maybe that too is a violation.

CrackDaddy

December 27th, 2010
9:20 am

Are you suggesting that Ohio State’s players are in some degree more selfish than than players on other teams? I would say there is no difference whatsoever.

Billy

December 27th, 2010
9:22 am

Ohio state football is very dirty. theyve been paying players and giving benefits since the 90’s

Ed

December 27th, 2010
9:24 am

Glad you are back.. Hope you had a Merry Christmas.

goldwreck

December 27th, 2010
9:26 am

I wonder why the Ohio State players received a 5 game suspension and AJ Green only received a 4 game supension for the same thing.
I think the Tech game will be entertaining and high scoring.I just hope Tech has the ball last.
I agree about the heart of Caleb King.He has the physical ability and before now appeared to have the mental capacity but obviously he lacks the desire to maximize his potential.
Go Jackets!

Dawg_Mike

December 27th, 2010
9:29 am

As I said on Tim Tucker’s blog, cut King and move on. If he isn’t serious enough about his responsibilities, then kick him off the team and see how long he stays to pursue his degree. Yeah right.

'76Dawg

December 27th, 2010
9:30 am

For once I agree with Mark May. Had these infractions been at an SEC school the suspensions would have started with the bowl game. It does look like the NCAA enforces rules differently for some schools.

VOLinATL

December 27th, 2010
9:30 am

Welcome back, Tony!

reebok

December 27th, 2010
9:31 am

Welcome back, Tony! Your crack about missing curfew in Shreveport made me laugh out loud (literally). Let’s play the game quick while Tech still has enough players to field a team! GO JACKETS!

Sandman053

December 27th, 2010
9:31 am

My question is, if a player violated a rule and is deemed ineligible, why does that player not have to serve the suspension imediately? i.e. AJ Green. I am sure Coach Richt would have loved to sit AJ against four opponents of his chosing.

Kevin

December 27th, 2010
9:32 am

They should have gotten Cecil Newton to sell them…then all would have been square with the NCAA.

AuTigerAtl

December 27th, 2010
9:32 am

You’re right X 5.
War Eagle!

AuTigerAtl

December 27th, 2010
9:33 am

Thanks, Kevin. I was waiting for some moron to say something stupid. What took you so long?

Sandman053

December 27th, 2010
9:33 am

I agre with Dawg_Mike..King can EARN his way back onto the team but he would have to show heart and initiative to get there.

Sandman053

December 27th, 2010
9:34 am

lol @ Kevin….that was pretty funny.

T-Bone

December 27th, 2010
9:40 am

Tony, what’s the story as to why the OSU guys get to start their suspension next year and not with the bowl game?

Ryno

December 27th, 2010
9:41 am

Can’t believe any Auburn fans would get butthurt over an obvious joke like Kevin’s. He was dead on, and Aubies start feeling dirty and guilty all over again.

JB

December 27th, 2010
9:42 am

Welcome Back Tony……I don’t think Kirby goes to Florida….He’s pretty close to landing his own gig, but Like Muschamp, he better be careful….. The first job out the box sets the tone for the your whole career…..Muschamp flops at Florida, he’ll end up coaching defense at N C State….or less……Caleb King would be gone if the Dawgs were deep at RB….We are pitiful, unless we can convert one of our 8 TE’s to RB…….

Kevin

December 27th, 2010
9:43 am

AugTiger… given that the NCAA ruled that the sons are not guitly of the father’s sins, what about that is stupid?

Sugg Id

December 27th, 2010
9:43 am

Is that suppposed to be a dis on Caleb? Patrick Pass was known for running out of bounds more than anything else at UGA but he also had a longer NFL career than almost anybody who ever ran the ball for UGA. I’m sure Caleb King would take being Patrick Pass in a heartbeat.

D A Double U G

December 27th, 2010
9:43 am

Welcome back Tony!!! Happy Holidays to you and your family.

There are going to be a LOT of angry Dawgs if these suspensions are overturned or even reduced to less than 4 games.

I hate to take the “eye for an eye” approach to this situation, but that is just the way it is.

GO DAWGS!!!!

Asheville Dawg

December 27th, 2010
9:45 am

King was a pampered athlete in high school and I’m sure at UGA. I sure hope Richt makes him earn his way back on the team, or cuts bait.

ratherBgambling

December 27th, 2010
9:47 am

Welcome back Tony!

UF is going pro-style on offense and it sounds like WM is going to go with a NFL guy. Expect an announcement on that after the NFL season ends Jan. 2. He is in no hurry hiring other coaches with the recruiting dead period in effect for 2 weeks.

UGA football continues to embarrass itself. 6-6 seasons and all the arrests and the players can’t even go to class.

Have and a Happy and Safe New Year’s everyone!

saban

December 27th, 2010
9:47 am

Does anyone know where I can get a little Grantham Choak doll with the red panties and georgia logo?

I was at Richt`s hair salon in Athens yesterday and they had sold out.

Imagine I can get some at the trailor park in Athens.

Joey

December 27th, 2010
9:48 am

AuTigerAtl’s a little touchy!

What on earth is going on with UGA’s recruiting? Have we ever gone 4+ months without a commitment?

Oh, welcome back, TB.

JB

December 27th, 2010
9:51 am

Good question Joey….Dawgs need to sign 28 and we have lot’s of needs ans spots open and not even a rumor floating…….I hope we don’t get left at the altar like last year….We ended up with 18 and already lost two of those. We need bodies…..

bama in ATL

December 27th, 2010
9:54 am

What I cannot understand about the OSU situation is the lack of action against the institution. These violations occurred BEFORE the 2010 season and ALL of these players participated in the full season of games. Should OSU not be asked to vacate wins during this year? The inconsistency of actions by the NCAA makes everyone shake their heads! The NCAA said that OSU gained no “competitive advantage” by selling the jerseys. Did Reggie Bush play better because his family had a nicer place to live? DId the five players from Bama play better because they got extra textbooks? Both schools had to vacate wins. If OSU said THEY did not provide the proper instruction to their players, is this not a “LACK OF INSTITUTIONAL CONTROL”, the worst of all offenses? Seems like now is the time to do what you want! Just plead the case that you did not know! Except for soon to be a millionaire, A.J. Green must be furious!

Mint Berry Crunch

December 27th, 2010
9:54 am

Ask Brookwood people about Caleb King- left for GAC because he would not have been able to pass Ga high school exit exam at brookwood and he absolutely cannot do college work, only at uga to run ball.

Chris

December 27th, 2010
9:55 am

Is Mark May correct? If this had been an SEC school, would the NCAA come out with the hammer so that the kids couldn’t play in the bowl game or is it more of an issue that no matter what conference is involved, the NCAA does not want to ruin a potential great matchup and risk losing TV revenue, fan interest, everything involved with possibly diminishing income?
I’m an SEC homer which I know is silly but I can’t help it. I’m guessing he’s basing his argument on what happened with AJ Green and Marcel Dareus at the beginning of the year but those were not marquee BCS bowls. While I loved May bashing the NCAA…equating the institution with the name hypocrisy, I think maybe no matter what conference was involved, they would have done the same thing since it is their primetime ‘post season’.

College football is the single greatest regular season in all of sportdom in America and yet the post season is the worst. If we can’t have a true four or eight team playoff (and Tony, you have spelled out ad nauseum how many obstacles we are dealing with here), then I would love to go back to the old way when the four/five majors all mattered in some way or other. As it is now, we really don’t have a true number one versus two and the BCS has diminished the other major bowls to meaningless exhibitions. I mean does anyone other than the two schools involved really want to see UCONN v Oklahoma?

Good to have you back Mr. Barnhart.

Sandman053

December 27th, 2010
9:56 am

@ bama in ATL: You know what the O stands for in OSU?

0 for 9 (or however many it is ) against SEC teams….

BULLDAWG BILL

December 27th, 2010
9:57 am

Very good article, Tony. Breaking rules or bending them to fit the athlete has been with these college players since they were in middle school. Just look how many are held back a grade so they can be more physically mature in high school.

The NCAA does not enforce the rules evenly. 4 games suspension for Green, 2 for the Alabama player, lifetime suspension for some North Carolina players, 5 games for Ohio State, but after the Sugar Bowl. The NCAA has set itself up for a massive lawsuiit in the future. The worst decision was the one surrounding Cam Newton’s father trying to sell him to Miss State. Now every parent of an outstanding high school athlete will be expecting a pay off and the athlete will claim he didn’t know anything about it. What a joke!l

Much more of tlhis NCAA bungling and college football will lose a lot of its appeal. It may be time for the big college athletic departments to start up another organization to replace the NCAA. If so, they should make it exclusive for the big guys. Furman U., a great college, should have no say in how LSU runs its football program including how many scholarships it grants, pracice days, recruiting days, etc.

collegeballfan

December 27th, 2010
9:58 am

“Ohio State’s players aren’t stupid, but they are selfish:…”

Correct. And a reflection of the last 30 years of American life, “Me first!”.

Bulldawg1444

December 27th, 2010
10:00 am

Tony, Great article,and I hope you had a great Christmas. My biggest disappointment about the situation at Ohio St. is the difference in which the ncaa can dole out punishments according to their favorites. I truly think Jim Tressel is a man of integrity and a great coach. However I can not buy his explanation of the situation. If this had of been UGA,or Arkansas for that matter the players would have been suspended for the bowl game.That should have been the penalty in this case.Then let Ohio St. barter with the Sugar Bowl on lost revenue,if their is any.Ohio St. fans would have still poured to New Orleans in droves.Uga was given no choice in the ncaa destroying our season.North Carolina,USC, South Carolina,amongst others did not have choices either.It is time for the ncaa to be brought front and center.From the time Oklahoma and Georgia filed the law suit against the ncaa both their programs have been marked. The rest of the country owes the 2 schools with tha ba@@s to challenge the mighty ncaa gratitude every time they cash a TV check. Hopefully you and our other journalistic friends can help light a fire under their feet.Thaanks for all you do

mcg dawg

December 27th, 2010
10:03 am

Time to cut ties with Caleb….enough is enough!

UGA89

December 27th, 2010
10:07 am

goldwreck
The OSU Players sold more things and received services( free TATS ) than AJ did, thus two wrongs versus one, equals one more game out.
I bet there are a lot of bars and stores in college towns taking down items or at least thinking up a lie of how they got team items to hang on their wallsIf OSU players did it I know AUBURN players did it too!
I am pretty sure I same Cam’s Jock strap on the wall of a Zaxby’s in Alabama.

surfdawg

December 27th, 2010
10:07 am

I like Mark May but he is incorrect because an SEC team, ie Auburn, got the biggest gift of all. It’s someone else’s turn now.

JB

December 27th, 2010
10:07 am

I don’t think Mark can or will do anything to Caleb King, because I hear ( From a good source, a current young player on the team) that Ealey is barely staying in school himself. We lose those two and Crowell kid goes to Bama, Murray might set the NCAA record for pass attempts next year.

Joey

December 27th, 2010
10:11 am

I wish AJ could have taken his 4-game suspension in 2011!

The recruiting is scary, JB. I wonder if it has more to do with Richt’s hot seat or the losing (11 in two seasons)?

Whatever it is, we’ve run into a wall . . .

Jake

December 27th, 2010
10:12 am

OSU,, could play in the SEC.

GStateBen

December 27th, 2010
10:13 am

As mentioned on Tomahawk Nation, Texas Tech DC James Willis has resigned. Don’t be shocked if he’s headed to Gainesville to join Muschamp as DC. Very good recruiter and they’ve worked together at Auburn.

Jcatl

December 27th, 2010
10:14 am

I hope Arkansas beats tOSU so badly that the players who broke the rules wish they’d been suspended for that game too, and Tressel decides to make the rumor true and leave.

surfdawg

December 27th, 2010
10:17 am

Oh yeah Arkansas is going to beat them

UGA Insider

December 27th, 2010
10:17 am

2010 has probably been the worst in the history of UGA football. If anyone can name any others that come to mind please let me know……Losses, embarrassments and suspensions have made this a forgettable time. At this point there is so much negativity it’s hard to turn it around. It may be time to start anew and the CMR era end at UGA.

ntr

December 27th, 2010
10:19 am

patrick pass has a super bowl ring. do you tony? that’s what i thought.

Dawgone Hypocrites

December 27th, 2010
10:19 am

Funny to hear Dawg fans on here griping about OSU when their star receiver just got suspended THIS YEAR for selling his jersey!! LOL

JB

December 27th, 2010
10:20 am

Joey, if this years recruiting class is out of the top 20, look for the drums to start beating before the Boise kick off…..Richt could put a lot of this to rest by blowing out Boise on National TV….

surfdawg

December 27th, 2010
10:21 am

Sure INSIDER any of the time between Dooley and lets say, Donnan, just pick a year.

JB

December 27th, 2010
10:21 am

Dawgone Hyp…………………Or just laughing off along with the NCAA Cecil Newton shopping his son……….All’s fair here !

gadawgs

December 27th, 2010
10:22 am

Hey..I think AJ’s suspension should have been the first four games NEXT year just like the players at Ohio State. He could then turn pro before next year and not have to pay the piper just like the five from the Buckeye state. Their transgressions actually occured BEFORE AJ’s yet his suspension came before theirs.