Jim Tressel is on the 2014 College Football Hall of Fame Ballot

By DJ Byrnes on March 6, 2014 at 12:01p
56 Comments

Out of 4.99 million men who have played college football over the last 145 years, only 934 players and 205 coaches have been enshrined in the sport's Hall of Fame.

Jim Tressel could soon be one of those men. The former Youngstown and Ohio State strongman will be on the 2014 ballot for induction into the College Football Hall of Fame. His accomplishments are well known:

Jim Tressel-Youngstown State (1986-2000), Ohio State (2001-2010)-Led teams to nine national title game appearances, winning four FCS championships with Youngstown State and one BCS championship with Ohio State…Led Buckeyes to six Big Ten titles and coached 73 First Team All-Americans during career…Two-time Eddie Robinson National Coach of the Year, winning one at the FBS and one at FCS level.

That's a sure-fire candidacy for the Hall of Fame, except for one thing: Tatgate. It will be interesting to see how voters weigh the scandal that deposed Tressel. It may cost him the honor of being a first-balloter, but ultimately, his jacket is too venerable to stop from being enshrined. 

56 Comments

Comments

Go1Bucks's picture

As Tressel was more or less the scapegoat for the weak willed Heads at OSU (they know who they are), I believe the voters will see this for what it was.  Nothing to diminish his accomplishments and abilities as a Coach.

Go Bucks!

+6 HS
Scarlet_Lutefisk's picture

No. He wasn't.

I love Jim Tressel and what he brought to the University but he is still solely responsible for the mistakes he made (just as we all are).

+1 HS
Unky Buck's picture

Accountability? What? That's something we need to have?

Seriously, I'm with you. I loved Tressel too but he created that mess (not solely, but he helped the tailspin). It's about time that everyone accepts it and moves on. It happened, it's over, and we still have a bright future.

...

+3 HS
Oyster's picture
+1 HS
Johnny-Shane_Utah-Falco's picture

@ Scarlett, question for you:

How much blame would you place on Gene Smith for "Tat-Gate"?

...0 %? And does Jim Tressel get 100% ?

Curious.

+2 HS
Will in Arizona's picture

Tressel is 100% responsible for his suspension and sanctions - he lied to the NCAA investigators.

 

For Tat-Gate overall, it was a team effort - players, coaches, and administration.

Go1Bucks's picture

I did not say that he didn't make a mistake, but he was setup to die the good death by GS in the end.

Go Bucks!

+2 HS
buckeyeEddie27's picture

I see Mr. Jim Otis is also on the ballot.

I know there's a game Saturday, and my ass will be there.

+5 HS
BuckFly's picture

Jim Otis was a grown-ass man before there were grown-ass men

 

+5 HS
BuckeyeLurker0509's picture

If dirtbags like Barry Switzer got in, Tressel better get in or I'm gonna be salty as hell.

+15 HS
Hovenaut's picture

Exactly what sprang to mind upon reading this.

Five national championships at the end of the day.

I am not very smart, but I recognize that I am not very smart.

+3 HS
TMac's picture

JT gets in with his resume; 5 national titles in 9 national title game appearances.  Not many can touch that.  But I'd imagine that tatgate could stop the first ballot entry that he would otherwise have gotten. 

+1 HS
Oyster's picture

The question is not whether he gets in, but will he be a first ballot inductee.  I say he will.  Why?  Two words:  Johnny Football.  When we look at what was going on at OSU (and I am still in the camp that he fell on the sword to protect those above him, but I digress) in terms of players selling their stuff for money and fast forward a couple of years,  'lil Johnny was doing the same thing (and probably worse).  The national perception of players making a profit off of their hard work has changed.  Even the attitude of the NCAA is relaxing on this issue based on their decision on 'lil Johnny and his actions.  "Did you do it?"   "No."  "Ok then, case closed."  Just look at the discussion going on in the Skully today.  My hunch is that Tat Gate will be overlooked in the greater scheme of things and he will get in the first time.

+3 HS
Furious George 27's picture

Johnny Football is a 20 year old douchebag, JT was 60 something who knew what he did was a violation that included lying to the NCAA. JT had a responsibility to enforce rules and do the right thing based on his position. The infractions commited by players were a joke but his actions made them serious.

Yeah, well…that’s just like, your opinion, man.

-2 HS
I_Run_The_Dave's picture

The difference between the two cases, other than public perception, is that Ohio State and Jim Tressel were forthcoming after the fact.  Texas A&M and Kevin Sumlin deny that violations occurred even when the proof is all over social media.

Which is more egregious?  Hint:  the answer is not Ohio State.

+5 HS
Furious George 27's picture

I think the worst part about tatgate is that JT lied. Had he not lied it would be different IMO.Being forthcoming after being caught is a little too late. In Sumlin's case social media is a lot different than actual info on your work computer... Easier to deny social media.

Yeah, well…that’s just like, your opinion, man.

-1 HS
yrro's picture

But... so does/did everyone else. He was just worse at it.

Furious George 27's picture

I believe it happens elsewhere as well, it also stings a bit when you write books on integrity and character. I appreciate all that he had done prior and no question will he make the CFB HoF the only question is when. And this is a HoF that elected Fitzgerald before Spielman.

Yeah, well…that’s just like, your opinion, man.

+1 HS
biggy84's picture

Read the transcripts furious george. You're believing the media version instead of his own words. The media sensationalized the allegations every chance they got. Selective, distorted persecution. Besides, was the offense really as horrible as the sanctimonious media make it out to be? Me thinks, not even close. Too many pious hypocrites in today's world. 

+4 HS
Nutinpa's picture

Okay.  Furious George.  As you tend to your flower garden this spring, riddle me this:

Go explain your position to Terrelle Pryor.......Reggie Bush......or Jadeveon Clowney's ....Mother....Aunt...Father, Uncle or guardian.

Then.....come back and tell us what you learned. 

Cuz if Jim Tressel had behaved like you wanted him to behave.....in the next five years, Ohio State's football team would not have won the MAC.   

Sometimes, I don't .....never f-ing mind.

+2 HS
Furious George 27's picture

I think all those players you mentioned were complete PoS's for being selfish doing what they did and screwed their teams in the end. But as you make a snarky reply was JT not informed by Cicreo of possible violatons in the spring? Yes, he was since you seemed to have forgotten that. So had he came forward maybe at worse its a 3-4 game suspension. But instead the season plays out the FBI uncovers Rife's involvement with OSU players and the NCAA allows OSU to play Pryor and others because JT said he didn't know which was a lie based on emails.... But please Nutinpa go on about how its not JTs responsibility to come forward as a coach when he first learned about this or tell the truth when first asked by the NCAA. Sorry guy, JT got paid a lot of money to run a program and that includes enforcing the rules no matter how stupid we think they are. I am not saying JT is a bad guy, just saying he failed to do his job that ended with us having a vacated season, the fickell season and the probation seasons. By my count that makes 3 seasons lost. But by all means you continue to call this a media conspiracy or what not but the evidence was there sorry that you cannot accept that like most other people.  BTW a bit much with the not winning the MAC comment, was that to insinuate that it would be ok to lie and let star players to get away anything I am not sure... But it was pretty stupid.

Yeah, well…that’s just like, your opinion, man.

-3 HS
Nutinpa's picture

I hope you feel better now that you got that off your chest, 27.   The bottom line for me is this....and why I made my "stupid" comment with regard to the MAC just to make my point that you had a hard time following:  Do you remember a big hue and cry from coaches and ADs across the country when all of this went down? Other than a snarky comment from Bret Bielema, there wasn't much said, now was there, from coaches, that is?  That is because Tressel, like every other coach has to make decisions every day as to what he enforces and when he looks the other way.  Tressel made a huge, career-ending mistake, no doubt about it. Had he turned in Terrell Pryor, he most likely would have violated a promise I am assuming he made.....like many coaches make....to mothers across across the land that "I will treat your son as if he were my own."  I can't prove that JT ever said that, but I presume he said something similar. Considering he was Pryor's meal ticket to the NFL, flagging him for the tattoo infraction would have labeled him a snitch-- or worse in the eyes of high school players and their parents and guardians.  He made the mistake of thinking that what was going on was, in the grand scheme of things, pretty harmless and never to be discovered.  To say he was wrong about that is obvious. 

Your math is suspect.  2011 was the lost season. 2012 was the freebie Meyer was given, with a full cupboard of JTs players who extended into 2013...which was to be their NC or bust season that turned bust in the end.  

So....we'll agree to disagree.  Yes, in the absolute scheme of things, JT was sanctioned (severely) for looking the other way and treating Pryor and a small core of kids differently than everyone else.  That was his undoing.  Many...the majority of coaches do it, including the guy who is in charge now when he was at Florida. It would have been better for Tressel for him to admit to Mark Emmert that he had been sleeping with his wife....vs. lying about the Tattoo cover-up.  Talk about irony.

Furious George 27's picture

Wow, you just have so many excuses.... "What to enforce and when to look the other way" WTF are you talking about? I am glad you are ok with allowing violations to take place so as long as no one gets caught right? Guess what he got caught and here we are so again dumb. I am sorry that I did not take some made up promise into account like you did... I mean it makes total sense now. Lets preach integrity and honesty to everyone outside OSU and say we do things the right way.... But Mrs Pryor its ok I will let Terrel be a total jerk off behind closed doors because I am no snitch right..... Being a good leader is also doing the unpopular thing and in this case suspending players.... But I guess you believe that people shouldn't be held accountable for their actions right? Not very good mentorship by a person that is supposedly treating someone like one of their own. Bottom line is, I don't care about what happens elsewhere because I am an OSU fan and we said before this we hold ourselves up to a higher standard and still win. Yes I am sure that players are treated differently than others, but the job is also look out for the well being of the program as well. To date only JT has allowed violations hurt the Program to where 2010 was vacated (lost season win wise) 2011 lost season due to best players being suspended several games and inept coaching staff 2012 is a probation year in which we probably could have went and won the NCG under Meyer so yes that makes 3 seasons where OSU missed out. All to save the star player from a 3-4 game suspension at most. Sorry dude, not trying to be a dick you pretty much initiated that. Sorry I am not all about giving him a free pass like you are because everyone else does it which is the lamest excuse.

Yeah, well…that’s just like, your opinion, man.

-2 HS
AngryWoody's picture

JT and Pete Rose are two guys I would like to see in their halls of fame

Our Honor Defend!

+12 HS
Oyster's picture
+1 HS
OvalBeachBum's picture

The fact that Charlie Hustle isn't in is a travesty...

 

"In the words of the late great Colonel Sanders, I'm too drunk to taste this chicken" - Ricky Bobby

+7 HS
Kyle Rowland's picture

Tressel will be enshrined, there's zero doubt about that. The year is the only thing in question. Plenty of people who cheated or were involved in scandals are in the College Football Hall of Fame. 

BME_Buckeye's picture

So tressel should be even though he went through tatgate because others have gotten in for similar or worst offenses? 

Look closely, because the closer you think you are, the less you will actually see.

 

-5 HS
Deadly Nuts's picture

Yes, that is exactly what he just said.....

LEBRON

+3 HS
Johnny-Shane_Utah-Falco's picture

Jim Tressel has greater character than about 98% of the coaches in college football.

+3 HS
BME_Buckeye's picture

Right and how many of those coaches lied to the NCAA or got their respective schools in trouble? Now tell me about how a person could know this for a season, not say anything about it and have better character than the other 98%. I'll hangup and listen.

Look closely, because the closer you think you are, the less you will actually see.

 

-4 HS
ibuck's picture

IMHO, it wasn't just Tressel's signing a form that got OSU in trouble. It was the perception, fueled by ESPN & others, and supported by a few other violations that Ohio State had achieved quite a lot during the BCS era (Jim's tenure) and was CHEATING. Like the memorabilia for tattoos, the supposed overpayment of OSU players in temp construction company jobs and excess expense money for a charity appearance were blown out of proportion.

Our honor defend, we will fight to the end !

If you can't win your conference, just quietly accept your non-playoff bowl game.

+1 HS
Firedup's picture

Time heals all wounds. Scandals come and go.  Tatgate will soon be only a footnote for JT and the Buckeyes

"Making the Great State of Ohio Proud!" UFM

+1 HS
jumbo_shells83's picture

Unky Buck, its "nice dots, chief". That's well-earned time as an Army Chief Warrant Officer prob doing something cool like flying helicopters over Iraqi shitholes/cities.

I had the pleasure of working with football for a short time while he was there, and holy shit, that dude cared about EV. ERY. ONE. That may have been his very problem. He cared too much about the dudes in trouble, especially for the POS they call TP. No question he screwed up. Its also not a question that he deserves to be in. I hope the voters get it right.

The American people sleep peacefully at night because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf.

+4 HS
osu07asu10's picture

I had the pleasure of working with football for a short time while he was there, and holy shit, that dude cared about EV. ERY. ONE.

Agreed. I worked for the Athletic Department (primarily football) from 05-08 and it was a joy to see Tressel. He was friendly, engaging, treated everyone with respect. He remembered names, remembered specifics about the 30 second interaction you had with him weeks/months before. You would be in a room full of importance and Ohio State "royalty" and Coach Tress would still shoot you a friendly hello and smile.

I'm not making excuses for the missteps he took as a coach, just confirming the guy was/is as genuine and as caring as they come.

"They don't know what they don't know." - Coach Mick

+4 HS
Doc's picture

Tress is a Hall of Famer with or without the votes.  Period.

"Say my name."

+12 HS
Johnny-Shane_Utah-Falco's picture

Great for Coach Jim Tressel....great coach, but an ever greater person!
 

 

+5 HS
Doc's picture

I got to "meet" Coach Tressel in Toledo way back in the winter of 2002.  By "meet" I mean I was in a line of people filing past him as he signed autographs next to Hop Cassidy and Archie.  I cherish that signature.  This was between his first and second seasons.  We all know what he did at the end of the second season.  Years later I e-mailed him stating the fact he needed to shake my hand again to see if the "magic" would work again.  I never heard back from him, but I will always remember getting to shake his hand and tell him good luck "next year".  JT is a treasure.

"Say my name."

+4 HS
nburns18's picture

Tressel deserves to be in. No doubt about it

"You win with people." -Woody Hayes

+3 HS
Earle's picture

I will shed real tears when Coach Tressel receives this richly deserved honor.

Just say no to italics abuse.

+7 HS
acBuckeye's picture

Was just thinking the same thing, Earle.

+1 HS
Barnsey69's picture

He stood at mid-field and was acknowledged with thunderous applause last year, as well as carried of the field. If Buckeye Nation can forgive him, then the voters should too. His accomplishments far outweigh his one transgression.

All hail the Senator!

Go Bucks!

Thank the Maker that I was born in Ohio, cradle of coaches, US Presidents, confederate-stomping Generals, and home of The Ohio State University Football Buckeyes!

+5 HS
ShowThemOhiosHere's picture

Tressel should be there.  First ballot.  Tatgate was a mistake made in a bad situation, and hopefully the voters are smart about that.  At least he should be in the Hall of Fame before Randy Savage.  OOOOOOOOOO YEEEEEEEEEEAUH! 

Class of 2010.

+2 HS
GoBucksOSU's picture

Tressel messed up during tatgate but he still deserves this honor.

+1 HS
BME_Buckeye's picture

Given that the HoF is based on works and no moral standings for who should and shouldn't be in, besides personal judgements of those voting, Tressel will get in. Under the list of accomplishments Tressel has attained as a coach he should be in but if morality were involved,  no. 

Look closely, because the closer you think you are, the less you will actually see.

 

-7 HS
Johnny-Shane_Utah-Falco's picture

So you're saying Jim Tressel doesn't have morals?

Those who actually know the man would tell you different.

Downvotes deserved for you, BME.

 

+2 HS
BME_Buckeye's picture

Interpret it as you want, just like you strongly interpreted another comment above. My point is Tressel has achieved a lot in his career and will get in for his works. But Tressel lied to the NCAA when asked about players role in the Tatgate when he should have told the truth. Now spare me the Gospel of they sold their own stuff, the NCAA is crooked, he did it to protect the players and look out for them after what happened to Clarrett because in the end Tressel was wrong. Now before you ask the question you ask above, how much blame goes on Tressel,  I would say not all of it but as a leader of young men, the coach at a prestigious football school, and an adult,  you have an obligation to be honest in all phases of your job and to comply with rules.  And if not for that reason and other transgressions others claim in the past (Is the stuff about what happened at YSU even true, never looked in to it) I would say no he shouldn't be in. However,  the NCAAF hof, a place I've been to before,  is not based on morality or principal but what works otherwise a few other things would change.  Sorry if it seems like I'm nailing Tressel to a cross but that's my opinion on the situation. 

Also down vote me, I give no fucks even if they aren't for reasons that violate 11w rules. Do you think I give a damn? 

Look closely, because the closer you think you are, the less you will actually see.

 

-3 HS
Go1Bucks's picture

My guess to this day is that he wanted to go in another direction with this, but the powers in charge convinced him.  You don't think that he wasn't told to take the hit because they would support him no matter what?  Then they backtracked on him.  GS deserved to be fired, and now he got a raise.  SO YES, he deserves to be in.  

Hell, you could eliminate the decade at OSU and he easily deserves to be in. 

Go Bucks!

+1 HS
ScarletNGrey01's picture

Great coach and a better person who made a mistake in judgement, and I sincerely believe it was to protect the kids, but of course more cynical folks will disagree.  Hell of a resume, man, makes me feel like an underachiever.

The will to win is not as important as the will to prepare to win. -- Woody Hayes

+5 HS
buckeyestu's picture

Who among us fellow Buckeyes have never lied? Who among us has never made a bad judgement, a mistake intentional or otherwise? Based on Coach Tressels' accomplishment, he belongs in the HOF, immediately. I will admit I am not happy with  Coach Tressel  lying, but so be it. I have moved on from the incident. Love ya Coach Tressel. GO BUCKEYES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Nutinpa's picture

If Urban Meyer had chosen to coach at a program other than Ohio State, even though he never violated an NCAA rule, the commentary toward him in this Forum for how he ran his program at Florida would be ten times more scathing of him and his character than anything Jim Tressel ever did.or was accused of. 

Isn't it ironic that Jim Tressel was condemned for lying to the NCAA....arguably one of the most inept and corrupt institutions in our land. I don't seem to recall too many complimentary posts in this Forum when the NCAA told Christian Bryant and Ohio St to fuck off when he requested reinstatement for a medical redshirt. 

Selective memories abound sometimes.

-1 HS
Furious George 27's picture

Tressel got caught in a lie by the NCAA  when asked if he knew about multiple violations... It doesn't matter that the NCAA is inept or corrupt. They had more than enough evidence to get him. Lets not forget that he also had his name on books such as The Winners Manual preaching integrity and doing the right thing this also hurt his image. Believe it or not, some people believe that people should be held accountable for their actions. JT F'd up and then made it worse by lying, he condemend himself. Why not use Saban in the anology? We already rip him on how he runs a program.

Yeah, well…that’s just like, your opinion, man.

-4 HS
Johnny-Shane_Utah-Falco's picture

Sorry, Furious Georgey, but the premise of your knowledge is wrong.

Tressel was indeed the scapegoat for the incompetent Gene Smith.

Smith should have been long gone by now, but we know how PC some powers-that-be are at OSU.

It seems you're just like many liberal cynical blowhards in the media (see Bob Ryan) --- they just can't wait to bring a great man down because of his public endorsement of Christianity. Don't think that has nothing to do with it, especially in today's "Gotcha" style of journalism.

+2 HS
acBuckeye's picture

His fantastic football accomplishments aside, Tressel should be in the HOF on the basis of being an extraordinary and selfless gentleman to so many young people alone.

What a great man. Damn I miss him.

+1 HS
osubuckeye4life's picture

I think he makes it on the first ballot.

The on the field accomplishments outweigh the off the field stuff. 

+1 HS