JEFF PEARLMAN

Coming October 2022: "The Last Folk Hero: The Life and Myth of Bo Jackson"

Ohio State!!!!!!!

So Susan, my mother in law, went to Ohio State. As did Chris Berman (the other one), my little sister-in-law’s boyfriend.

Hence, just got a call a few minutes ago from Jessica (the sis), screaming, “Ohio State, baby! Ohio State! You have to blog about Ohio State!”

OK, I will. Love all the involved family members. But the Ohio State football program, as well as the NCAA, should be ashamed. Yes, Buckeyes, you won a game. You’ll win games next year, too. And the year after. And the year after that. But how did you win? By pathetically using five players who were suspended for selling championship rings, jerseys and awards. In addition, the “student-athletes” (a term dripping with irony) also received improper benefits a from the tattoo parlor and its owner.

Because the NCAA loves money, and bowl games generate millions (especially bowl games featuring high-level quarterbacks like Terrelle Pryor), the players were suspended for the first five games of 2011. Which is pathetic and sad and yet another indictment of an organization that warrants no genuine respect. But where, oh, where, was Jim Tressel, the respected Ohio State coach? Where was all that blather about running a clean program and holding players accountable and standing up for what’s right?

Pryor, of course, is now going to bolt for the NFL—and why shouldn’t he? So, I’m guessing, will some of the four other players (leading rusher Dan Herron, No. 2 wide receiver DeVier Posey, All-Big Ten offensive tackle Mike Adams and reserve defensive lineman Solomon Thomas). To me, it’s just example No. 633,233,221 of how messed up college sports really are.

I’m sure they’re cheering wildly in Columbus tonight.

But they’ve got little to celebrate.