Wednesday Skull Session

By Chris Lauderback on April 19, 2011 at 10:51p
Yo, NCAA. You take cash?

What's that you say? More rain in the forecast? That must explain the buds sprouting from my extremities as spring is nearly in full swing in C-Bus. The one missing ingredient, of course, is the annual Spring Game which is now just three days away.

Naturally, rain is also in the forecast for Saturday (50%) though high temps nearing 70 should be enough to drag your crickity bones out to the 'Shoe so you can draw your own conclusions on the state of the passing game and which players might be primed to breakout come fall, amongst other things.

As a programming note, especially if you won't be able to attend or view on TV, we've got you covered. In between gags like giving Hunter the hotfoot, Jason and I will be doing our best Woodward and Bernstein from the press box.

In the meantime, on to today's skull session...

Mean Gene (Okerlund was awesome). OSU AD Gene Smith met with the AP yesterday and for the first time I can recall, he seemed to almost intentionally come off a little peeved at the Tressel saga. Calling the whole situation "a nightmare", Smith said he expects the cost of the investigation to exceed that of Tressel's $250k fine thanks in part of the need to hire two "expensive" companies to assist.

Smith also revealed that Tressel was supposed to apologize at the train-wreck presser on March 7th but that never materialized. In response, Smith said, "then we got with him and he got better at it. It's an emotional thing."

It was also announced that OSU released a copy of the Vest's NCAA compliance form dated 9/13/10, in which Tressel signed and dated indicating he had reported any violations to school officials. The form itself states:

By signing and dating this form, you certify that you have reported through the appropriate individuals on your campus (OSU President, Gordon Gee; OSU Athletic Director, Gene Smith; Faculty Athletics Representative, John Bruno; or the Athletic Compliance Office) any knowledge of violations of NCAA legislation involving The Ohio State University that occurred during the 2009-2010 academic year through the time you sign this form.

Finally, Smith indicated, like everyone else, he has no idea when the situation will be put to bed saying, "we're in the investigation. Who knows when it will be resolved."

At Least The Investigation Piggy Bank Ain't Empty. The Stanford Daily brings us data outlining the financial implications of playing in a BCS bowl last season and thankfully, only Ohio State came away with a nice haul. The Buckeyes pocketed nearly $289k from their Sugar Bowl trip which should be enough to reinforce Tressel with fresh coatings of a kevlar/teflon hybrid.

Interestingly, Wisconsin was the only other BCS participant to make meaningful bread, netting about $79k from their Rose Bowl embarrasment while Oklahoma and Arkansas made less than $10k each. UConn's $1.8mil loss has been well chronicled and even Auburn lost over $600k with Oregon dropping $312k. As private schools, TCU and Stanford weren't required to release any financial data.

Potentially Perfect Timing? With so many question marks at the skill positions on offense while the defense attempts a reloading of their own, 87% of you still see OSU going at least 4-1 to start the season. Clearly, those projecting an L see that coming at home against Michigan State just prior (see what I did there) to the Tat5's return.

I wholeheartedly agree that Sparty provides the most likely chance at a hiccup but the thought of going on the road in week three with issues at QB and WR specifically is still a cause of personal consternation. Having said that, it's good to see Miami's depth chart also laden with question marks, so much so that Al Golden released a final spring depth chart on Monday only to send out a final-final-no-tackbacksies version a few hours later.

Here's to hoping their lack of a clear starting QB will help offset our own question marks under center.

What About Mark May's Lifetime Contract With Massengill? With ESPN's announcement Monday that all network anchors and reporters can no longer accept endorsement deals from companies tied to sports  ESPN may be 'involved with', an accompanying list of said deals was made public. Interestingly, analysts such as Herbstreit, Corso and Cris Carter (all Nike) are not required to kill their deals while Fowler had to nix his (Nike).

Probably showing my age, I was stunned to see some dude named Chris Burandt (pro sled rider - as opposed to your 10 year old son, who retains his amateur status) has no less than 20 endorsement deals.

Mixtape. Two high school recruits on a visit to UGA stole some iPods and smartly advertised them on Twitter...The General apologized to Kentucky and Calipari after Saturday's blast about 2010 hoopsters not going to class plus some awesome comments about Calipari's shady ways...Here's a vid of all 214 Blake Griffin dunks this season...Stan Drayton's stop at OSU is his 12th job in 19 years...Zombie Food Pyramid...Congratulations to...Finally, Happy 420 to those of you who celebrate it.


Comments Show All Comments

Barney's picture

Brains probably taste like chicken

Set your gearshift for the high gear of your soul!

BuckeyeSki's picture

"Mean Gene was awesome! Ohhhhhh yeahhhhhh!"


Banned from BlackShoeDiaries since 2008. Crime: Slander/Defamation of Character Judgement: Guilty

Bucks's picture

Enjoyed the read this morning. Not sure I like the monetary figures from investigation though... Quarter million or more? That is not an investigation that was focused on this sole issue. If a figure around 85-90k was mentioned, it would jive with me but not this.


I was one of those 87% ' ers with a 4-1 peg. Odd b/c I don't normally fit into the majority. My loss though is to Miami, not MSU. I can see a loss there easily with rebounding. Too many ppl are overlooking this game as a given. I'll just be thankful for JaPicky.

robert goulet's picture

Agreed.  I think the defense, even with the new parts, matches up well with MSU's running game and after that, that's really all they have.  The offense at home should be able to do enough to get by.  The Miami game is much more of a wildcard.

NW Buckeye's picture

Your figure of 85-90K is laughable.   In depth discovery, litigation and such can easily approach 250K on something much more minor than this in the business world.  There is no reason this should be any different.  It would really not surprise me if the final figure was closer to 500K.  What you probably miss in your estimate is that this investigation will not end at the email exchanges.  OSU is going to have to prove that there is no lack of "instituitional control" and therefore will delve into a myriad of other things to prove their case.  To do anything short of that would be neglect on Gene's part. 

Bucks's picture

Not sure why you seem to take exception or enjoy debating my post. I certainly don't believe my figure is laughable, as I'm familiar with litigations/Investigations & Audits. 25-30K would be par for the course as a base, for any business/entity coming in for work. 250k is a much larger mold and at root there is the need to pour through everything beyond just JT interaction with who he says. That figure more reflects entire department audit & would jive more with the potential "more bad" to come.

NW Buckeye's picture

I'm not really debating your figures.  Just am not surprised by the 250K figure like you were.  Heck, some simple divorces end up with atty's pocketing over 50K.  Here we have 2 large firms attempting to uncover anything that may be of interest to the NCAA, as well as the NCAA jumping in.  And, just who do you think is paying for the NCAA investigators to be there?  My guess is that OSU is getting stuck for at least some of it.  Anytime you get atty's involved the sky is the limit for fees and such.  A good friend of mine is knee deep in a simple business suit and the legal fees for both sides combined are now in excess of 100K.  All I am saying is that auditing and atty fees add up quickly and the dollar amount should not surprise anyone.  I would not be surprised if Gene turned around and increased JT's fine to cover the legal/accounting costs. 

One thing that previous investigations at other universities have proven is that the schools are always hit harder when they do not do their due diligence to uncover every possible snafu.  And, given the size of the OSU Athletic Department one should expect to shell out a few $$ in order to adequately define and defend the business standard to the NCAA. 

So, yes, I am agreeing with you that the entire Athletic Department is being audited.  It's just that I would not expect less from what has transpired before this.  Apparently you did, so in that respect your figure was not laughable, and I can understand your shock at the overall figure.  However, I do not speculate that "more bad" will or will not come of this because of the dollar figure.  It is what it is, and hopefully Gene has enough people in place to really get to the bottom of this whole mess. 


Bucks's picture

Just to clarify, I absolutely agree that once people in my field get involved the monetary cost can sky rocket by conclusion. I guess that is my point.


We may not be in preliminary stages anymore & be further into intermediate. If the prelims and/or cursory look amounts to around a 1/4 mil, the final cost will be much higher. A 250k figure to me, indicates a cursory look/audit that then spawned additional "notations," way past the original scope. What that says is unrelated things may have surfaced.


I will venture an estimate that by the time this investigation is concluded & any judgement delivered, the price tag will be in the 1.3-1.5 range. We haven't even begun the phase(s) before the infractions committee where the real $$ pours. 250 will multiply x4 at the minimum.



Bucks's picture

It is way too early to voice this but oh well.


I am getting a picture/feeling that this team may be reminiscent of '02. Not trying to say the same things will happen or venture to the total season, but looks to be a defensive anchor with just enough offense to win, in the first 5. Is that fair?

The_Lurker's picture

If only we had Jenkins and Gamble from that team...and a QB who could make a lightning-quick intelligent read like Krenzel did on "Holy Buckeye" (which was supposed to be a short crossing route or checkdown to the running back).

Bucks's picture

Maybe we should kidnap Nugent as well and force him to take the field =0)

luckynewman13's picture

don't forget Andy Groom

BuckeyeSki's picture

One of my sources has informed me that Jamaal Berry and Mike Adams will not be participating in today's practice, in observation of the holiday.

Banned from BlackShoeDiaries since 2008. Crime: Slander/Defamation of Character Judgement: Guilty

RBuck's picture

Got this from the Buckeye News box on here. This should make everyone feel a little better (at least for a few minutes).

Long live the southend.