Dazed and Confused

By Chris Lauderback on July 23, 2011 at 8:00a
Meeting with the NCAA clearly wasn't JT's finest hour

I know we’re all still totally perpendicular in the mid-section (the men at least) following the NCAA’s statement that Ohio State will not face any new allegations nor a failure to monitor charge in the wake of “Gate’s” Tat and Tressel - and we have every right to be - but there’s still part of me completely dumbfounded by the whole episode.

The taste of knowing no school has ever been hit with a post-season ban without first being tagged with failure to monitor is as sweet as Tupelo Honey but after reading the transcript of Tressel’s February 8th interview with the NCAA, I’m still miffed at how our beloved coach could be so cavalier in his handling of the situation and how poorly he came off when responding to certain questions posed by investigators.

To be clear, all things considered, I’m still incredibly thankful for the Tressel Era of Ohio State football.

It brought the first national title of my lifetime and saw the Buckeyes rise to a level of national prominence that I fully consider worth the fallout. Right or wrong, that’s just the way I feel. That said, I’m not in the camp thinking Tressel committed a righteous act by falling on the sword to save the school increased punishment. If anything, he clearly risked increased punishment and was very well aware of it.

Reconciling his actions against the senatorial public persona we saw in pressers and on gameday is pretty difficult and from reading the interview transcript, it's evident he was far from the confident and comfortable coach we’ve come to know.

We joke about the “and so forth” count and whatnot but even when he was in a  post game presser speaking a bunch of words without really saying anything, he was still in control of the situation. Reading the interview, it’s easy to picture him as the complete opposite.

As an example, here’s coach upon being asked to give an instance of when he took a situation to Gene Smith or compliance:

...and I guess the other one would be when we get those calls and messages left, you know, at the secretary’s desk of, “I saw your student athlete at such and such with so and so,” you know, we’ll always called, you know, and say, “Hey, Doug,” you know, either, “I’ve never heard this name but there seems to be some alarm,” or, “I’ve heard this name, and it might be time to disassociate.” We use that phrase a lot. When does that moment come where you, “Hey, I’ve heard that name, you know...“– too frequently.” And then usually that’s probably the last I have to do with it because they end up taking it and calling people in and talking to ’em about people and calling student athletes in and so forth. You know, very few times – you know, I guess another example I’d use is so and so calls in and says, “Hey, I’ve seen Johnny driving this certain kinda car.” And so we’ll call and say, “Hey, what’s the updated vehicle registration form,” because it’s – you know, that’s one of the things we chase. And, you know, so Doug and his office are forever on the phone, you know, trying to – you know, so anytime, you know, something from that standpoint comes up, you know, we, you know, we try to help the cause.

It’s easy to feel for any coach at a football powerhouse with regard to all the noise that comes their way via a “concerned public” that bombards the office with potential allegations of wrongdoing, so much so that taking them all serious is next to impossible. Here’s Tressel adding a little color to such goings on: 

They love to call the names of the guys they know, you know? Certain guys are everywhere. Well, they couldn’t a been in the same place – you know, six different places at the same time, you know? So I can’t tell you that every time every little thing is brought up. But I remember one about two-three springs ago, we got a call from a little gal that worked at a golf course hot dog stop at the ninth hole. And she called and was all distraught, Doug, remember, that someone bought one of our guys a hot dog, you know? And, you know, that seems a little frivolous, if you will, but still it was, you know, a young person using a name. I said to Doug, you know, “Hey, this happened at this golf course. And, you know, we should probably check it out,” you know? Which, if I recall, we did and his roommate or whatever, you know, was the guy that bought it, you know, so forth and so on? But so I guess that, you know, have to feel it a little bit because people love to, you know, be in the know.

Moving on to the line of questioning regarding his reaction to Cicero’s initial email that players might be involved with a shady character caught up in a federal investigation, Tressel was clearly shaken: 

But probably the thing that knocked me off my socks was at the bottom when there was a little description of this criminal. And, again, I didn’t emblazon in my mind his name. I just emblazoned in my mind, “Oh, my God. There’s a homicide. There’s drug trafficking. There’s possession of criminal tools. This is a bad situation. This is, you know, this isn’t like the girl that called from the hot dog stand. This is not like the guy that calls from the bar and says they might be getting a drink. This is frightening.”

Obviously confused as to what he should do next, Tressel talked of his inner struggle and of what he would do if given a do-over:

And so those next couple weeks, in my mind, I spent a lotta time, you know, pounding, pounding, pounding, and also wondering, “Where do I – you know, where do I look for some help with this?” ’Cause to me, it wasn’t simply an NCAA rule. And I’m not belittling the importance of an NCAA rule. But it was way beyond an NCAA rule. I mean, it was a security issue. It was a federal criminal issue. It was a narcotics issue. You know, it – you know, where do you turn? Knowing what I knew – not knowing who all was involved with it – I mean, I knew one name. So you sit there saying, “Oh, my God. Do I got 25 guys drug trafficking? Do I got, you know, X number of people selling their stuff so they can feed their drug habits?” You know? I mean, you go through a million things. If I fastforwarded to today, I think I have the answer to what I would do. I would go to the university legal counsel because it’s a federal issue. I wouldn’t go to the athletic department legal counsel. I wouldn’t go to the compliance office. I wouldn’t go to – I would go right to the level of, you know, the extreme part of the situation and ask for some help. I say that because since this has all been started to get discussed, I’ve asked that question, and that’s kind of the response – not kinda. That has been the reflective thought of after the fact, you know? Not during the fact, you know, but after the fact. You know, knowing – you know, after the fact, we know that there wasn’t criminal activity and that there wasn’t drug trafficking and all that. But I didn’t know that, you know, at the time I was, you know, deciding...

With that, the questions turned to his decision to not escalate the issue to university officials, instead choosing to inform Sarniak. Why did Tressel, scared and frightened, turn to Sarniak instead of administrators?

My response would be my biggest fright was the one guy named, you know, from my responsibility in that e-mail. I have a strong working relationship with the XXXX figure. I have a high awareness of the vulnerability of the young person, and that I felt from a safety standpoint that I needed to alert Ted to the gravity of that, that I would have a hard time – you know, I don’t wanna be dramatic, but I would have a hard time having a second guy murdered or a second guy get incarcerated. That’s – I don’t wanna, you know, over-dramatize, but that’s why I felt like that was, you know, what I needed to do.

This is the part where you can start flaming Pryor since JT’s desire to protect his QB is what drove the decision to try and handle things sans the university.

A little later, proving he’s still in coach-mode, Tressel says the following in response to being asked if he wants to take a five minute break:

I don’t know. We’re rolling. Are you guys hurting?...Well, I’ve got – I mean, I hope, and you do to, too – I hope you have a lock into what’s going on...I don’t wanna go and half a halftime, and come out and play a bad second half.

Agreed. The last thing we needed here was a 2nd half reminiscent of the Sugar Bowl. 

Focusing back on Cicero’s emails and why Tressel didn’t take those to someone at the school, coach implied he was caught up in the fact the emails were supposed to be confidential and that if Cicero had instructed him to escalate, he would’ve:

I guess that was my only reach for help, maybe. I guess, you know, as I think about it because, you know, if he would have said to me, “Hey, here’s what you need to do.” “Go to your legal counsel at the university level, ’cause this is, you know, federal,” or if he’d a said, “Hey, you need to go to Gene,” or, “You need to go to your compliance office,” you know, that would have I guess made my life easier. And that wasn’t necessarily the response I got, you know, as you, you know, turn forward. But, yeah, that was probably the one spot I reached out.

I suppose that’s possible but I’m having a hard time thinking he would’ve done as instructed by Cicero, if only because he willingly sent the info to Sarniak without any instruction from Cicero.

In the between time, Tressel says he met with the players individually but only in a vague fashion and for incredibly short timeframes (“two minutes max” ?), often not even in a “sit down” type setting. And when they did meet, he never brought up Rife’s name or the tattoos, he just generically advised the player to stay away from the wrong people and places. If for not trying to keep things under wraps, why else would Tressel be so vague when trying to get kids to keep themselves and the program out of danger? Was this a strategy to protect the university? I just can't bring myself to that conclusion, as much as I want to.

Further, though at least one player interview from the case summary suggests Tressel stated specifically that he “didn’t want to know” what the players were doing, Tressel indicated he would’ve instead used a phrase like, “I don’t know” what you guys are doing when trying to scare them straight. Now, he did at least advise the players to be honest if/when questioned more specifically by law enforcement, university or NCAA officials.

Later, when asked whether or not he was aware the Tat5 would likely be ineligible to participate in 2010 football, Tressel offered up a response that is a little hard to believe:

No, I didn’t think of it like that. You know, I didn’t take that progression of thinking. I mean, I knew that inevitably they were gonna have a problem. I don’t – you know, I can’t sit here and say I thought, “Oh, these guys are ineligible.” I didn’t think it of it that way.

Pressing further, Chuck Smrt specifically noted emails that indicate potential eligibility issues for a couple players with the season fast approaching and inquired if Tressel, at that point, considered whether or not he’d be fielding ineligible players. Tressel’s reply:

I was thinking that when the situation is resolved, that they will certainly have penalties. And whoever else because, you know, the inference is in there where there were multiple, you know, X number of jerseys and, you know, stuff. So that, you know, whether it be those two or those two and anyone who was involved, you know, there’s gonna be – you know, as I pointed out when I got off of my rambling thing there, is that, you know, we had to prepare for the inevitable, and there was gonna be an inevitable.

Another stunner for me comes when Tressel is asked why, after the players were reinstated for the Sugar Bowl, why he didn’t then bring up the emails from Cicero. Tressel stated it was because he promised Cicero confidentiality. He also stated he couldn’t even remember Cicero’s name at that point and basically had to scroll through his cell phone on December 23rd as Ellen was driving them to Cleveland, at which point he stumbled across Cicero’s name his phone’s directory.

Now, I’m sure Tress has conversations with thousands of people but I don’t know how to reconcile that he could possibly forget the name of a former player, now attorney, that sent him mind blowing emails about four of his most valuable and high profile players being involved with a drug trafficker under federal investigation.

Bottom line, Ohio State received some great news from the NCAA yesterday. The bad news however is that the Woody of my lifetime doesn’t appear to have fared as well.

Prior to this transcript, I felt Jim Tressel had coached his last game but only because that would be his choice. After reading his responses to some of the questions outlined above, I’m more of the opinion that such a decision will no longer be his to make. And for that, my heart feels a little like Charlie Bauman’s throat did on that December night in Jacksonville. Dazed and confused. 


Comments Show All Comments

BuckeyeChief's picture

I feel bad for Tressel; it's easy to say he f'ed up (which he did), but let me ask you guys and gals something: How many times, as a leader, have you been in a situation where you had to make a choice like that? How many times have you been in a f'ed legal situation where someone's life or past time is in your hands?

It ain't fun, and it ain't easy. We can all throw stones, but when you've been there, ket me know.

(Jason, Irricor, Toledo Buckeye and a few others may know what i'm saying).

And YES I am of the opinion he f'ed up.

"2014 National Champions...deal with it!!!"

Is it Saturday Yet's picture

Being a former Marine and in leadership positions in the civilian world I completely agree with you. There are others who never even bend the rules regardless of the situation.

BuckeyeChief's picture

imho that's the hardest part, knowing when you can bend the rules, or just completely drop the hammer in certain situations.

"2014 National Champions...deal with it!!!"

buckeyedude's picture

I agree with Chief wholeheartedly. I've personally made some bad decisions in my life, as I'm sure everybody has, and have to live with those decisions. Life is not easy or fair, sometimes. But I believe Tressel is a good man. He is paying for his bad decision. I don't believe like 99% of the folks that post on mgoblog that Tressel is a lying, no good, mafia king pin, and that Ohio State should pay for his sin. 

BTW, I thought we already debated this to infinity and beyond?



doodah_man's picture

Buckeyechief is EXACTLY right...been there, done that.

Jim (DooDah_Man)

Attorney, USAF Retired...

Jim "DooDah" Day

"If I were giving a young man advice as to how he might succeed in life, I would say to him, pick out a good father and mother, and begin life in Ohio.” --Wilbur Wright, 1910

helloheisman's picture

Great Coach, bad choices....

Hoody Wayes's picture

Why do people want to lead? Because it comes natural to them.

But, the best leaders know leeading is a full-time job. They know themselves, know what's right and wrong and know that tough decisions must be made.

The best leaders know they are accountable.

Jim Tressel won games. But, Jim Tressel was not the best leader.

Don't worry about Jim Tressel.

Let's focus on Ohio State, now.

OHIOinME's picture

I don't get what you are saying above.

  Tressel admitted he is accountable.  He isn't asking for sympathy nor his is trying to blame others.  He didn't blame the kids and is still trying to protect the University, the team and current and formal players. 

Don't confuse getting in trouble and making bad decisions wrong choices on occasion with being a bad leader.  JT is a great leader.  He was taking care of his troops realizing they could be in bigger trouble than NCAA regulations.  He didn't take appropriate actions at first, but when time came to pay the piper, he took blame and took it like a man.  All great leaders, all great people screw up and sometimes the screw ups cause pain.  JT wouldn't have had the the success and such an outstanding reputation if he wasn't such a great person and leader. 

All words you describe above associated with being the best leader is what is Jim Tressel does is.  Great leaders are the best leaders and Jim Tressel of what I know of him so far is a great leader.

madhatterhater's picture

ESPN is pissed and I love watching it.

go bucks

Lucys Daddy is a Buckeye's picture

Best.  Weekend.  Ever.


Watching those asshats whine and carry on like a bunch of caterwauling babies is priceless.  Their tears feed and nourish me.


Suck it, ESPiN.

...And when we win the game, We'll buy a keg of booze....And we'll drink to old Ohio til we wobble in our shoes...

madhatterhater's picture

I will have to admitt after all of the false reporting that has been taking place through out this event, I will not jump on other teams so quickly!

go bucks

Dr. Kenneth Noisewater's picture

Great point....maybe we should all be learning something here about patience and not jumping to conclusions....but, uh, I doubt it...ha ha...and I will probably be the first to blast the next school that has some negative rumors...

The Vest-er's picture

Maybe if we had some kind of mat that told us when it was okay to jump to conclusions. Someone get on that.

Fundamentals are a crutch for the talentless.

cronimi's picture

+1000 for the Office Space reference.

Hoody Wayes's picture

Open post to 11W staff and readers:

It was my honor - but also - my privilege - to have served America, as a member of its military. I wore the uniform. I did my duty. I was honorably discharged.

I am mindful that political discourse on this site is frowned upon. This is a good thing. We're here to talk about football.

And it's necessary and proper to acknowledge our veterans on Veterans Day and Memorial Day, especially.

But, let's refrain from waving our military credentials in the air. It's past the point of being holier than thou.

It doesn't just misappropriate this privilege. It cheapens it.

My fellow veterans...just be glad you served and come here to talk football.

BuckeyeChief's picture

Wow. Just wow.


I am not one to openly wave my credentials. I was stating my opinion that others on here, SUCH AS veterans, police officers, coaches, educators, managers and so forth have had to face;

If you wish to believe that's what I am doing, fine. I won't get worked up about it, and I am pretty sure there are at least few guys on here who I have discussed things with in private, and others who I have been able to pay it forward to, (without discussing to the board at all), would agree that I don't go about "waving our military credentials in the air. It's past the point of being holier than thou".


"My fellow veterans...just be glad you served and come here to talk football".

Exactly what I was doing.

"2014 National Champions...deal with it!!!"

Jason Priestas's picture

I think that's a personal choice best left up to the veteran. If they're proud of their service, they've more than earned the right to talk about it. If they would rather not, then that's fine as well.

JozyMozy's picture

agreed. In this case, there's even a perfectly relevant contextual reason for the mentioning of one's service record. I appreciate the extra bit of insight that BuckeyeChief brings to the table.

BuckeyeChief's picture

Thank you, Sir.

"2014 National Champions...deal with it!!!"

buckeyedude's picture

Hey Hoody, if your comment was directed at Chief, I can attest to this man's character. Can I e-mail you?

Would you also criticize someone who was a little boisterous in his or her support of The Ohio State Buckeyes? I just think your comment is way off. And thanks for your service, also.



BuckeyeChief's picture

Thank you, too, Sir.

"2014 National Champions...deal with it!!!"

Johnny Ginter's picture

wait a minute, exactly what kind of car has he seen me driving?

NW Buckeye's picture

What seems painfully evident by JT's responses is that this whole affair was really out of character for him.  He was not comfortable discussing it at any level.  This is not the testimony of a seasoned liar and cheat.  This was someone who was really stumped by the entire situation.  And knowing that JT is his own toughest critic I really think he will regret this whole incident for the rest of his life. 

TheHumbleBuckeye's picture

“Because we have to chase him. Because he’s the hero Columbus deserves, but not the one it needs right now. So we’ll hunt him because he can take it. Because he’s not our hero. He’s a silent guardian, a watchful protector. A dark knight in a sweatervest.”

GoBucks713's picture

that is the best/worst shop i have ever seen. It is fantastic!

-The Aristocrats!

TheHumbleBuckeye's picture

Three minutes on paint brush! Probably more time than SI put into their shitty "investigation".

GoBucks713's picture

This assuredly deserves a pulitzer.

-The Aristocrats!

buckeyedude's picture

That is so funny, I'm going to actually spell, "Rolling on the Floor."



Lucys Daddy is a Buckeye's picture


Sir, in the future when you decide to post such items again, please issue a spew alert so I can make sure my mouth is not full of Mountain Dew.  Now I will have to clean off my monitor and desk.

Thank you for your consideration.

BTW...that was effin' funny.  Well played, old man.  Well played.

...And when we win the game, We'll buy a keg of booze....And we'll drink to old Ohio til we wobble in our shoes...

tampa buckeye's picture

It will be interesting to see the impact this has on recruiting.

Denny's picture

I'm amazed at the extent to which he rambled in the interview - there were a couple of points where he talked for three or four full pages of text.


Bucksfan's picture

I find it extremely difficult to follow the transcript.  His responses are so unclear and poorly answered, littered with vague examples and "you knows" every other word.  To me, it doesn't come off as if he's trying to be sincere, direct, or cooperative.  If I were the NCAA investigator, I'd be banging my head into the table.

Normal Buck's picture

Same here.  Reading through that, it almost seemed like he was completely unprepared for the interview - as in, he had not prepared with counsel or anything of that nature.

Brutus's picture

According to someone who sat in on the entire interview between JT and the NCAA, it was more painful to listen to than it is to read. This person could not believe that JT could possibly have come off so badly, especially after having such a positive public image. He didn't give the impression that he was lying, just completely clueless. It was evident that he was not used to having to defend himself or answer for his actions.

50 Eggs's picture

At one point in the interview, i think, after Tressel is discussing what he would do in hindsight, someone in the room makes some sort of comment/insinuation that he wasn't supposed to recieve advice or councel prior to the interview..  at least that's how i interpreted it.  Plus, isn't that part of what Ga. Tech got hit so hard for?  Paul Johnson allegedly giving his players a heads-up that the were going to be interviewed?  Seems like the NCAA doesn't like 'em prepped.

Abe Froman's picture

Okay, I like JT and all.  I tremendously respect the job that he has done with 18-22 year old men who have been coddled almost all their life (to the point of being a demi-god in some instances).  But one of the key things a coach has to do with these guys is teach them how to interract with the media.  How to answer questions without saying, "You know."  Do you know what I mean?  Now, I would love to see the heandlines on ESPN be more than "Ohio State Good News" or the Dispatch's "OSU Dodge's a Bullet."  All headlines seem to infer that OSU got away with one.


Also, I'd give a side of bacon for Gene Harris to have the balls to say that "No, we are not vacating the win against Arkansas, since the NCAA allowed the players involved in TAT Gate to play in the game with full knowledge of the supposed infractions."


Additionally, the time is nigh that we talk of August....

Basking in the wake of mediocrity.....

Bucks43201's picture

hahaha Mark May's twitter page --- this guy has lost it. Love it.

Yes, Coach Tressel may have not handled this the best way, but I still stick by the claim that he's probably in the top 1% of the cleanest coaches out there when looking at the big picture ... esp. when it comes to recruiting --- in his 10 years, I've never heard anything about negative recruiting or any other kind of garbage they try in other parts...i.e. Hokester-ville. Tress is a class act.

"You win with people." - Woody Hayes

RBuck's picture

About an hour ago on espin radio:

"30-40 players hanging out at a tattoo parlor selling memoribilia.....Terrelle Pryor driving a new car every week....no lack of institutional control.....unbelievable!"

They got the unbelievable part right..

Long live the southend.

iball's picture

Why is everybody being so hard on JT? Everyone kills people and murders people and stuff.

“There’s one thing I have learned through all my adventures and conquests - it’s that some people are just wired for success. I had no choice when it came to being great - I just am great.” – Kenny Powers

BuckeyeChief's picture

Well, at least I was able to engage in some good ol' shit talking with a scUM fan on Thursday.

Funny how the court of public onpinion has changed since Jan 2003; kinda like when Duke beat UNLV, huh?

"2014 National Champions...deal with it!!!"

GoBucks713's picture

i just joined twitter, just so i could post 72 - 0 @mark_may


-The Aristocrats!

Bucks43201's picture

well, done sir!

"You win with people." - Woody Hayes

Chris Lauderback's picture

I'm in the 43201, myself...

RBuck's picture

The segments of the interview that Chris posted above reaffirmed three things that I still believe:

He's just a man like most of us.

He's a father figure to his players.

He fucked up royally.

Long live the southend.

Riggins's picture

Yea, that interview is hard to read.  Tress just rambled in parts.  I felt bad for him because I know that interview room is probably the last place on Earth he ever wanted to be.

And I don't think the military comments were out of line. They were commenting on leadership and their military service was a past example of leadership experience in their life. It fit with what they were talking about so...carry on.  It's not like they were dropping their military experience in to their argument on why Ann Arbor is a whore.

toledobuckeyefanjim's picture

Oh, man...the Buckeye haters on ESPeeN's website are literally going insane over the Buckeyes not getting hammered with failure to monitor and lack of institutional control. They are so whipped into a mental frenzy, they all may need to see a shrink next week. I'm laughing just thinking about all the intellectual laziness posted there. No, Ohio State didn't get away with anything. Tressel made a bad choice and OSU is paying for it. So is Tressel. But to knock him isn't right. As head coach, the thought of my players associating with thugs like Rife would scare me too.

Bucks's picture

I'm especially enjoying some of the delusional scUM posters. The things coming out of their collective brain power are hysterical.


Some of them talking about "It's just time for us to stand them up like we do, and whoop their ass!" ... Uhm because that has happened recently for sure! :P

Also like seeing the true nature of their fear starting to slip to the surface "We need to be all over our current verbals, hopefully we don't lose a ton of power now in recruiting, damn there goes the recruiting."

BuckeyeChief's picture

ot, but any accountants in Ohio on here?

"2014 National Champions...deal with it!!!"

GrayDay's picture

This made me feel better about Tress, actually, precisely because it shows he was how confused he was.  Its been hard all along to buy how his actions were not at least in part attempts to skirt the rules, since the right, rational actions seem clear to us.  How wouldn't that challenge your belief that he's an honorable guy? 

But here it finally kind of makes sense.  He was confronted with a tough situation - one that awoke painful ghosts from his past - and he kind of froze.  He's always been an inarticulate rambler, even when he knows what he's talking about.  But its clear here is still struggling to figure out he should have done.

It's interesting that he never seems to say that he "knew" the players were ineligible at the time, but did know that eventually they'd pay the piper - which in December, he saw that they did.  Appears he felt that he really didn't ever know what the facts were, but was sure justice was taking its course.

He made a big mistake, but I for one can believe his concern and fear for his kid's lives, and assumption that the justice system would take care of the rest, were driving his limited and curious actions.

So he's human and imperfect.  And he is good and honorable guy.  A lesson in that somewhere.


Maestro's picture

The interview was not a blast to read by any means, but there are some things that I did glean from it.

1. Coach Tressel is a vault if he wants to be or needs to be.

2. Coach Tressel wasn't just dealing with this issue and the rest of his life just stopped.  The man was dealing with this, a situation that clearly disturbed him deeply, while leading the Ohio State football program to yet another tremendous season.  He was on the road recruiting, he was coaching Spring ball, he was meeting with players, and prospective players, and families, and doing all the incredibly time consuming things that come with his job.

3. Coach Tressel is very close to Terrelle Pryor.

4. Coach Tressel is in fact a football coach, not a lawyer.

5. Coach Tressel never changed his story, and never will, because it is the truth.  It is what went through his mind and how he dealt with it, NCAA rules be damned.

6. Coach Tressel believes in paying for your "crimes".

7. Coach Tressel will always be a great man with firm beliefs that you reap what you sow, and this entire situation will haunt him for the rest of his life.

vacuuming sucks

50 Eggs's picture

Agreed 100%.   Anybody catch the part, heavily redacted, but it seems to imply that Pryor was telling Tressel he was going on a recruiting visit to a school because they had promised his friend, "a high school 2nd teamer", would get a scholly, as well?  Tress says something to the effect of "that doesn't seem right to me", Pryor says something dismissive and hangs up the phone.  Sarniak then talks Pryor down and he calls back to apologize. 

A) I'm kind of interested what school that was.  B) Another example of Tressel classiness vis a vis recruiting. C) I think it sums up, pretty well, the relationship between the three

JozyMozy's picture

excellent analysis, Maestro. 

741's picture

Totally agree with this analysis. I would add that it was truly eye opening to read of the degree of Pryor's apparent need for attention and coddling (from both JT and Sarniak).

I still believe that JT is a good man who tried to do what he believed was right in an effort to protect Pryor from himself.

The way he went about it clearly was wrong, and he is paying the price for his own mistakes.

What is perhaps the saddest aspect of this whole godforsaken mess is we have been provided a glimpse behind the curtain and we now see JT is probably not the great and powerful mastermind we sometimes imagined him to be, and some of the realities of the college coaching profession are things we'd rather not know about.



billjones's picture

I am not going to try to justify what Tress did.  He lied and brought dishonor on our Dojo.  I thank Tress for all the ballgames that he won, but I am glad that we are moving on. 

Having said that, has anyone checked out the message board on MGOBLOG?  To hear them tell it, Tress won all the games against them by cheating!  One thing that I do know about Tress is that he knew how to get his ballclub up for games against Michigan.  He didn't need to cheat to do that.  I think 2001 and 2002, when he was playing with Coop's recruits, make that very clear.  If one follows their logic to its conclusion, then Tress was responsible for UofM  losing to Appy State! 

As the state of Michigan contracts, Michigan will become more of an irrelevancy.  It will be a slow erosion that will eat into the souls of each and every TSUN fan for years and years!  Enjoy being the University of Chicago of the 21st century, losers.


Brutus's picture

Harsh dude, harsh.  As a Chicago alum, i'm insulted that you would compare the two schools on any level.  U of C didn't just get bad in football while they were in the B10.  They intentionally decided to give up sports to focus on academics. Michigan has no such excuse for becoming irrelevant in football.  Their shittiness happened organically (or at the hands of JT, whichever you prefer).

billjones's picture

My apologies.  I didn't mean to besmirch U of Chicago.  Um...how about Minnesota? 

Notre Dame?

Brutus's picture

I'd say Penn State just to piss off their trolls but i think they'd take being compared to scUM as a compliment.

741's picture

Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain.

Qujo's picture

Can't wait to come up for a home game and punk the F out of channel 10. Amateurs! If they are smart they will not show their asses, er faces on campus this fall. Really did they really think they were going to raise their "national audience" with a false breaking story on the eve of the NCAA that they won't hammer OSU? Or are they just that stupid that they think they are going to make a difference in anyones lives? I can't wait to see those jackasses on campus, I am going to punk this F out of them!

Our arch rivals.... 11 National Championships, 10 before 1949 - eight of eleven shared. Trying to respect them... trying.... Ugh!

GoBlu's picture

You guys are getting ahead of yourselves.... There is still the matter of Aug 12 and repeat offender status.

buckeyedude's picture

So there's still hope for Michelin yet?



Pam's picture

And you guys aren't proclaiming dominance in recruiting in Ohio?

Nappy's picture

The only date you should be worrying about is November 26th.  

I never saw a football player make a tackle with a smile on his face