As several people pointed out, Braxton would have changed everything. Virginia Tech would never have put that much pressure on because Braxton would just have run forward, leaving 7 defenders behind him. Even JT was able to run for over 20 yards on that last drive. This leads me to the why not Cardale question. Would he have been worse than JT? No way. And he can just run up the middle for 4 yards. Why can't he be Tebow? Why did we anoint JT? Shouldn't Cardale be given a chance?
Those headphones are a few hundred dollars. This is not a car or something. Can someone have a friend who is not a booster? Would the result have been different if the present was a $300 winter jacket or some ties and dress shirts instead of headphones?
Agreed with Brashbuck on the self-policing thing. If OSU and the Big 10 had done nothing in response to this, it would have ended up as nothing.
Also agreed on the inequities in reporting all of this. Last night, ESPN could not get enough of Johnny Manziel. He was the savior of college football and the symbol for all that is good in the world. I don't remember Terelle Pryor being treated the same way. And I doubt Noah Spence will get favorable press for this.
Is there a simpler explanation for what happened this year--Christian Bryant's injury?
I agree that only 2011 was a true failure. Michigan loss and Bowl loss.
Note that we had a lot of Michigan loss/Bowl loss (or no boww) combos in the 1990s: 1990, 1991, 1995, 1997, 1999, 2000. 6 in 11 years. In the 13 years since, only 1.
I still think the Florida loss was the worst in program history. We had a chance to be Alabama-like--the truly dominant program in college football. Had we won that game, the SEC superiority argument would not have much weight.
You cannot blame 2011 on Pryor. He committed an infraction that should have led to a few game suspension. What Ohio State was punished for was Tressel's cover-up.
Pryor was a kid who broke some NCAA rules. The worst case for what he did should have been a partial personal suspension for 2011.
Tressel was an adult who broke some serious NCAA rules. The worst case for what he did is what happened.
And why pick on Pryor? What about Posey or Adams? If there is blame, they share it.
Pryor got screwed in all of this. He is certainly not my favorite Buckeye and I think he has handled this pretty poorly, but it is clear that if Tressel had just reported the infractions, then 2011 would have been a lot different.
All this said, we ended up with Urban and we were undefeated last year. All's well that ends well.
The blame on Pryor is ridiculous.
He has been a money quarterback for OSU--perhaps the best ever. The number of times he has bailed out the team on 3rd and long and 4th and long (Iowa) is ridiculous. Everyone who is attacking him now loved him on all those plays.
He has also been a pretty upstanding citizen. We know every bad thing he has ever done or said because he is so closely scrutinized. And when you look at the list of his sins (Vick comment; feuding with Herby; selling memorabilia for tatoos) it is pretty darn minor. Many a good, respectable, upstanding person did a lot worse from 18-22. And all of this car stuff looks like it is nothing. His mom bought him the darn car on a monthly payment plan. And getting a loaner car from a dealer is common. The dealer was probably more generous with the policy because it was TP but it is pretty difficult to declare this an NCAA violation.
In addition, it is not in the interest of the program to attack Pryor. Why would the next big time recruit go to OSU when he knows the fan base might turn on him for the slighest mistake?
And it is not in the best interest of this season to attack Pryor. We need him back. We need to beat Michigan this year. Maybe Braxton Miller will be better than Pryor or maybe he is the next Zwick.
Let's pull together as a Buckeye family and show TP some love.
Tressel needs to self-impose a penalty of five games. The players are out for five. He should be out for five. As he said, he is not asking for pity, so no one should give it to him. He is expected to hold himself to the highest standards. He didn't. He should face the consequences.
He also needs to be more honest as to why he did not take action. All he had to do was talk to one lawyer or compliance officer at Ohio State and he would have fulfilled his responsibilities. Doing so would not have in any way put players at any risk. Doing so would not have undermined the federal investigation. (In fact, there was a simple solution to the conflict between keeping the investigation private/reporting to the NCAA: (1) call up the US attorney and let him know what OSU knew and (2) ask him if OSU was authorized to talk to the NCAA. If the answer to (2) was no, OSU has a great excuse for why it did not disclose.) The reason he did not talk was he did not want his players to be suspended. He thought he could slide on this.
Also, note that he has provided absolutely no explanation for why he did not disclose what he knew in December--after the investigation had become public. Any concern about confidentiality was gone then.
In sum, while I love Tressel, his speech was Clintonesque. He needs to own up to what he did to get back some respect.