Thursday, December 30, 2010

I Say It Here ...

Did you ever see the movie "Broadcast News" with William Hurt, Holly Hunter and Albert Brooks?

Do you remember the scene where Brooks is on the phone at home, feeding information to Hunter, who, in turn, is feeding that information to Hurt, who says it on camera?

Brooks watches this play out on his TV screen and says, "I say it here, it comes out there."

I've been having that sensation today.

Yesterday, I wrote a blog post about the recent suspensions of five Ohio State players for the first five games of the 2011 season — but I pointed out that they will be permitted to play in next week's Sugar Bowl game against Arkansas.

These Ohio State football players are all juniors, and they could choose to skip their senior years, thus avoiding having to pay any penalty for violating NCAA rules.

It's the best of both worlds — playing in a BCS bowl, then not having to be held accountable for NCAA rules violations. Talk about having your cake and eating it, too.

Anyway, I wrote at length about that possibility yesterday. Then, today, Ohio State football coach Jim Tressel said all five players had promised him they would return for their senior years.

Tressel said he told the players they would have to make their intentions known to him before the team left for New Orleans. The team is now in New Orleans waiting the start of Tuesday night's game.
"Tressel said he told the five they 'have to make any decision based on the future and (leaving early for the) NFL prior to us leaving for our bowl game. It wouldn't be fair if someone was able to participate' and then leave."

Tim May
Columbus Dispatch

I'm not the first person to suggest that some or all of these players might play in the Sugar Bowl, then decide to skip their senior years and avoid paying any kind of penalty.

And I'm skeptical, to say the least, about all of this. Beyond cautioning the players that it "wouldn't be fair" for them to play in the Sugar Bowl and then skip town, I'm not sure Tressel will be in any position to do much if a player goes back on his word once the game is over.

I mean, it's not as if the players made a commitment on paper — like a scholarship.

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