Forecast the OSU penalties !

Submitted by rockydude on June 8th, 2011 at 3:42 PM

We seem to yaw into this topic in every other thread, so why not give it a dedicated discussion? What do you boarders think the OSU penalties will be, given the limited information that we have at the moment?

Despite the gravity of some of the newer allegations, I am going to say the death penalty is off the table. Not because the NCAA has sympathy for OSU, but simply for pragmatic reasons involving other teams, the conference, and dollars and sense. Taking the OSU game away from Michigan would be penalizing us. Possibly more importantly, OSU is too much of a cash cow. Those tv contracts don't happen because people are going to tune in to see Indiana play Minnesota. Were it not for the real world fallout, I think the NCAA would actually consider the death penalty, should some of the more serious charges be substantiated. 

My prediction then, is that while OSU will survive, they are going to get hit pretty darn hard. I am going to say that they get five years probation, a three year bowl bid, and a loss of 10 scholarships per year.

Give me your alternative theories, if you will . . . 


EDIT: Tressel is gone, Pryor is gone. Anyone else on the horizon? Give your thoughts on any heads that might find their way to the chopping block. If you really think you're smart, tell me in what order they to. Popular candidates include, but are not limited to: Gordon Geek, AD Smith, Coach Fickell, and the other members of the Tat 5. (Tat 5 guys would probably leave as opposed to being removed, but that is pretty much the same thing.

One final question - are they just the Tat 4 now ? ? ? 



June 8th, 2011 at 3:50 PM ^

The two big punishments by the NCAA in the last 15 years were Bama and USC. Both involved a 2 year bowl ban and close to 10 scholarships over 3 years.

Given that this scandal seems to run much deeper, and involved a coaches knowledge, and ignored internal audits, I would imagine the punishments would have to be at least as bad.


June 8th, 2011 at 4:42 PM ^

Right, but at the time, people were saying Alabama was lucky to avoid the death penalty.  21 scholarships and a 2-year bowl ban was evidently the harshest thing the NCAA could come up with short of nuking them SMU style.  But then the USC/Reggie Bush scandal happened, and the NCAA issued even worse penalties (31 scholarships + 2 year bowl ban) for frankly less-egregious violations.  The OSU scandal is shaping up like an opportunity for the NCAA to define a new "harshest non-death penalty sanction."

It only makes sense.  OSU saw what the NCAA did to Alabama and USC but violated the rules anyway.  If (and when) they replace Fickell, they might want to look at coaches who are experts in rebuilding programs from the ashes.


June 8th, 2011 at 3:52 PM ^

has begun taking a real no non-sense stance as of late. My prediction is that they will hit OSU  deep and hard simply because if they do not, they will be sending a message that it's okay for your program to cheat so long as it generates sufficient dollars for college football. Death Penalty? No. Last season gets vacated sans the bowl game, 2 year bowl ban, 10 schollies lost per year for 4 years.


June 8th, 2011 at 3:54 PM ^

Lose 10 scholarship for 3 years, 3 year bowl ban. No TV ban. Lots of vacating of pervious wins, including the 2010 Rose Bowl, but strangely not the 2011 Sugar Bowl.


June 8th, 2011 at 4:01 PM ^

I have been waiting to ask this question but I believe the NCAA ruled the players eligible to play in regards to Tatgate.  However, they didn't have any idea of TP receiving money for autograph signings or gifts from "boosters" or cars from dealerships.

Would this change the NCAA stance on Pryor's eligibility for the 2011 Sugar Bowl game?


June 8th, 2011 at 3:53 PM ^

Probably more than 10 scholarships total. I would think closer to 15-20ish total. And a 3 year bowl ban.

This also is assuming some more concrete things come out. If nothing else comes out then probably a little less severe.

Indiana Blue

June 8th, 2011 at 3:55 PM ^

which includes B1G championship games (no title appearance) because if they won, they couldn't represent the B1G.

at least 12 schollies over 3 years ...

and at minumum on probation for 5 years ...

also remove all of 2010 games from the record, including the Sugar Bowl (which also takes away their B1G co-title) 

Go Blue !


June 8th, 2011 at 3:56 PM ^

4 year postseason ban.  15 scholarships over 4 years. Vacated wins of the 08, 09 and 10 seasons.  Vacated Sugar Bowl and Rose Bowl wins.

If they investigate further back:  Possible vacating of 02 national championship.

U of M in TX

June 8th, 2011 at 3:56 PM ^

Where the closest prediction gets a shirt?

My vote is for vacated wins for all of 2010, including the Sugar Bowl, an 8 scholarship penalty for 5 years (40 total) and a 5 year bowl ban for duping the NCAA before the Sugar Bowl.


June 8th, 2011 at 3:59 PM ^

is still pending. I wonder if the NCAA will even look into more or will just issue a blanket punishment on principal. They also have to look at the other kids added onto the tat-5 and see about suspending them for this year, or lumping them into revoking last year, then they have to look into former players who were named as receiving benefits and rule on revoking past seasons, then they have to look at extending the statute of limitations to go after the Clarret years. LOIC is a guarantee. TSIO said "we've conducted a painstaking search and there's nothing wrong going on," then they had that press conference, then they gave compliance the best possible review they could. If a few reporters could find all this dirt then the AD and Compliance could have. The ban and scholarships will be bigger than u$c, though. u$c was for one player, this is for more than 40 over a decade, and Tressel embarrassed the NCAA royally with the Sugar Bowl fiasco to top it off. They're doomed.



June 8th, 2011 at 4:03 PM ^

If any more comes out I predict: Death Penalty. 

Let's not forget that Ohio was on a 3 year probation 2006 to 2009 and the death penalty legislation is clear.

In 1985, in response to rampant violations at several schools, the NCAA Council passed the "repeat violator" rule. The rule stipulates that if a second major violation occurs at any institution within five years of being on probation in the same sport or another sport, that institution can be barred from competing in the sport involved in the second violation for either one or two seasons. 


Picktown GoBlue

June 8th, 2011 at 9:07 PM ^

can help us out here (Jim O'Brien's entry):

In September 1998, Coach O’Brien was recruiting Alex Radojevic, a foreign national from Yugoslavia. Coach O’Brien sent $6,000 to Radojevic's mother. Radojevic ultimately did not play for Ohio State after signing a contract to play professional basketball, and Coach O'Brien did not share the facts of the loan with Ohio State’s athletic director, Andy Geiger, until April 24, 2004.[2]

At 8:30 a.m. on June 8, 2004, without any prior discussion, Mr. Geiger handed Coach O’Brien a letter notifying him of his immediate termination. The conduct that the University identified as justifying its conclusion that he had violated an NCAA rule and thereby materially breached the Agreement was his provision of financial assistance to the Radojevic family. The letter did not address the rules violations involving another player on the team, Boban Savovic, which were not known at the time but would eventually lead to the severe NCAA sanctions and O'Brien's ban from coaching.

Savovic was also from Yugoslavia, but actually played for the Buckeyes from 1999 to 2002. He was later found to have received improper benefits and to have committed academic fraud. The NCAA in 2006 gave Ohio State three years' probation and ordered it to pay back all tournament money earned from 1999-2002 when Savovic was on the Buckeyes' roster. In addition, Ohio State was forced remove all references to team accomplishments from those years and vacate all team wins.

However, in November 2004, O’Brien brought a lawsuit against the Ohio State University in the Ohio Court of Claims and was awarded $2.4 million for Ohio State’s wrongful termination of his contract, because he was fired prior to any NCAA finding. Ohio State appealed the decision to the Ohio Court of Appeals and the Ohio Supreme Court and the decision was upheld.

The NCAA banned O'Brien from coaching in 2006. On January 31, 2008, an NCAA appeals committee lifted all restrictions on his hiring.[3]

and the current Notice of Allegations already states

Inasmuch as your institution was previously found in violation of NCAA rules in Infractions Report No. 256 decided on March 10, 2006, your institution is subject to the penalties set forth in Bylaw

So, tsio is already familiar with:

  • every win and loss vacated that the affected players played (113 games disappeared)
  • pay back all tournament money earned by playing the affected players
  • length of probation equal to almost as long as the vacated games
  • coach banned from coaching (had to appeal ruling and it took 2 years to get this to a finite timeframe)

Hadn't noticed it before, but one of the death penalty items ( is 4 years of removing school officials from NCAA committees, so even if Smith survives (which I doubt) they could kick him off everything.


June 8th, 2011 at 4:08 PM ^

because the letter ofthe law is plain, but I think the NCAA will interperet things differently. They invented that law because of SMU and they were much much worse. They were caught having a huge payroll, were hammered, then were caught again doing the exact same thing a year or two later. TSIO did get caught twice, but once in Basketball, then once in Football, and I believe under  2 different ADs. They probably wont get a total football ban that would hurt the teams they play against just the same as a TVban, but they are looking at having multiple seasons revoked.

Indiana Blue

June 8th, 2011 at 4:14 PM ^

I am almost certain that tsio will be spared from the "death penalty", though you are most certainly accurate that this is what the "rule" reads.  In the end, the NCAA will say that the statement is more of a ... "guideline" than a rule.

just  a guess ....

Go Blue !


June 8th, 2011 at 4:10 PM ^

I think the NCAA might use a graduated punishment as far as scholarship reductions are concerned: 3 years of 10 ships per season (max 75 players total/15 per class) followed by 3 years of 5 ships per season (max 80 players total/20 per class). I'm going to guess 3 year post-season ban and vacating wins in all games in which Pryor played.


June 8th, 2011 at 4:08 PM ^

I had started a diary on this but then the new allegations about TP getting $20K or more for signing autographs broke and, well, I may not finish it.  But in a nutshell, here are the five most similar infractions I could find and the associated major penalties:

1. The USC/Reggie Bush scandal:  Two-year bowl ban, loss of 10 scholarships for three years (30 total), four-year probation in football, plus forfeiture of wins and championships; one-year post-season ban, loss of 3 scholarships over two years, and recruiting penalties in basketball

2. FSU Free Shoes U. scandal: (Resembles tatgate only, w/o the cover-up): 1 year probation only

3. Michigan hoops/Ed Martin Scandal:

One year post-season ban, four years’ probation, loss of 4 scholarships over four years,

4. Alabama pay-for-play + pay-H.S.-coaches-to-steer-recruits scandal:

Two-year bowl ban, five years’ probation, loss of 21 scholarships over three years

5. Miami Pell Grant scandal:

One-year bowl ban, loss of 31 scholarships over three years

Based on these and just looking at the OSU information already available, I think they are already looking at the first-ever 3-season bowl ban (not counting the SMU death penalty) and approx. 35 scholarship losses, in addition to the forfeiture of wins and titles and disassociation with TP and the various offending boosters.


June 8th, 2011 at 4:17 PM ^

Please no death penalty. I want 10 scholarships a year for 4 years and a 3 year bowl ban. And then in a couple of years everyone will be standing in line like in the movie Airplane, to kick their ass.


June 8th, 2011 at 4:30 PM ^

Danny Sheridan (USA Today, I think) just said on the Finebaum show that his source has told him that the penalties will be "very serious" and similar to USC, but will likely also include a TV ban. He did not say who his source is. I sort of took him to mean a source within the NCAA, but I might be reading too much into his statement. He also could have a source within OSU or it might be just someone's opinion. However, the way he said it, it did not sound like he was just passing on some unrelated third party's opinion.

My predicition:

1. Vacate all of 2009 and 2010 wins (including bowls);

2. Loss of 30 scholarships (with 75 total cap), just like USC;

3. 2-year post-season ban;

4. 1-year TV ban;

5. Special OSU-only compliance reporting requirements regarding extra benefits; and

6. 5-years probation.


June 8th, 2011 at 4:32 PM ^

I doubt a TV ban. I don't believe that has been one instituted since the ABC regional/national broadcasts dominated the landscape and were pretty much the only non-local tv.

Nowadays most BCS conference games are broadcast and taking TV away from a team has more detrimental widespread affect to other teams (imagine impact if M-OSU was not on TV). It would also affect huge conference TV contracts.  

Being able to be on TV isn't as big of an advantage to a team as it used to be.



June 8th, 2011 at 4:42 PM ^

Technically, I don't think it affects revenue much. The Big Ten's TV contracts are for fixed amounts. Unless ABC/ESPN has some sort of out clause or sought to renegotiate the deal, it they pay the same amount regardless of whether they televise OSU or Indiana. I suppose it could reduce BTN advertising revenues on the margin and/or the Big Ten's renewal rates 4-5 years from now, but if it is only a 1-year TV ban the impact should be extremely limited (especially when spread over all 12 teams in the conference).

At the same time, you are correct that it has not been done in a very long time (20 years???) and I am not an expert in knowing what the NCAA thinks is TV "banworthy". One thing: I sort of remember when the USC sanctions being handed down that there was some discussion that the NCAA told USC that a TV ban had been discussed and that USC should feel lucky the NCAA decided against it. I will poke around the interwebz and see if I can find any more definitive discussion of that.

Six Zero

June 8th, 2011 at 5:13 PM ^

Plus, as obscene as it sounds, the last thing the B1G wants is a TV ban.  They lose OSU games for even an entire year and the BTN might suffer backlash, pull threats, or even breach of contract from potential advertisers.

If there's one thing Delany knows, it's that you don't mess with RoTel.

Seriously though, imagine you're a national advertiser and you drop a six fig contract with the BTN, only to watch them drop Minnesota and Indiana games week after week b/c OSU's schedule shortens the fall-back list after ABC's finished with the conference?  Yikes.

Go Blue Eyes

June 8th, 2011 at 7:13 PM ^

It does seem that a TV ban hurts not only OSUI but everybody else in the conference that they play.  I wonder if it is possible for OSU to be penalized by losing television revenue instead of an outright ban?  That way the games are still shown but OSU is not deriving a financial benefit off of the game.


June 8th, 2011 at 4:43 PM ^

"his source has told him that the penalties will be "very serious" and similar to USC, but will likely also include a TV ban"

Not sure who Dan Sheridan he is either full of shit or he needs to get better sources.  The NCAA is still investgating.  I doubt that anyone in the know is up to the phase of discussing punishment when they don't know the full extent of the violations.


June 8th, 2011 at 4:24 PM ^

The USC punishment was encouraging, but I still feel like Ohio State will get off lighter than many think. I think they get the same punishment as USC, even if what they did was probably worse. After the joke of an investigation they did last time they were in Columbus, I'm not getting my hopes up.


June 8th, 2011 at 4:28 PM ^

Are starting to realize how bad this is.

I think 2-3 year bowl ban, 30 schollies over 3 years, and vacating all 2009 and 2010 wins are pretty much the baeline.

It could be even worse if any digging turns up anything else.

I don't believe for a single second there will be a TV ban.  Look at how the NCAA folded to OSU with the bowl game last year.  It is all about the dollars.  OSU is a huge draw for the Big 10.  There is no way a TV ban will happen.  Everything else, short of the death penalty, is on the table. 

Alvin Wistert

June 8th, 2011 at 4:38 PM ^

3 year bowl ban, 4 years of 10 scholarship reduction, vacating all games ineligible players played and 5 years probation.  That would be my guess based on what information that is available at the moment.  I really think by not self reporting that it is going to cause worse punishment than USC received.