Sexual Predator was just the Tipping Point for Anzalone

Submitted by Buzz Your Girlfriend on May 4th, 2012 at 8:08 PM


This article has some very, very interesting quotes from Dr. Anzalone (Alex's father). Seems like a decommitment was coming even before the events of today/yesterday and they are biting their tongues as to what really "wasn't right" at OSU.



May 4th, 2012 at 8:16 PM ^

"You don't want your son to go to a place where there's a potential issue (like this)," Sal Anzalone said. "You expect the (football) staff to have some sort of control on how things are handled with recruits when they visit. This is ridiculous.
"I was concerned with what recruits do, and with them being allowed to visit these kind of places where it puts kids at risk. That's the issue. You entrust people (at the school) to do the right thing."
While he said he doesn't believe the Buckeyes coaching staff was aware that a sexual predator had access to its recruits and players, Sal Anzalone said he is upset at what transpired.
"Of course," he said. "Who wouldn't be? I'm outraged."

turd ferguson

May 4th, 2012 at 8:20 PM ^

If I were a parent and I felt that a school wouldn't/couldn't keep my kid safe, there's no way in hell that we'd consider that school (especially considering all of the other options available).  This story has the potential to do some major, major damage if OSU made any mistakes in how they handled this.

turd ferguson

May 4th, 2012 at 8:17 PM ^

Wow, it looks like this story just might blow up.

At this point, I think it's pretty clear why Lewis Neal decommitted, too.  From The Silver Bullet (…):

Why did you de-commit from your verbal commitment to Ohio State?

LN: It's too personal, I can't tell you because then it'll end up everywhere. If everyone knew the real reason, then some of the fans wouldn’t be coming at me like that. Because my reason is legit, and you would clearly understand. It has nothing to do with football trust me!

Did the offer from LSU contribute to your de-commitment?

LN: My decision was nothing to do with football so no, the LSU offer did not contribute!


May 4th, 2012 at 8:47 PM ^

"Sal Anzalone said that his son had expressed his concerns that "something wasn't right" about his visit shortly after returning from Ohio last month." - from the OP's article

When you have 17 year-old recruits that are noting serious cultural shortcomings at your institution, you would hope that this would serve as a kick in the pants for some serious re-evaluation, not just there, but everywhere. These are still kids, football or not, and you would hope that any program is putting their safety first and foremost. If that isn't happening in their mind, there is  a HUGE oversight occuring at your program.


May 4th, 2012 at 9:06 PM ^

do you think a good chunk of the team would have been spending all its downtime at Rife's tat parlor?

Maybe when you drop your kids off at school the first time you want to think they'll hunker down and keep their noses clean, but you also know they're finally away from home and they're going to let go too, do the things kids do, some of them stupid. When you get the call about the underage drinking bust or the bar fight or the weed he was seen smoking, well, that's just part of the deal.

The call you do not expect is the one about the feds busting the place where your son and his friends call home. From a parental perspective, the real story at Ohio wasn't whether or how they were cheating; it was that the football team spend their time not in the dorms or the library or any of the other places you'd expect to find students but hanging out with a major drug dealer who's wanted by the FBI.

I would never have expected it to take this particlar turn, but there's a sense in which this is more of the same. There are some exquisitely unsavory characters hanging around the Ohio athletic department, and the school and maybe more importantly the community doesn't seem to particularly give a damn. Maybe this incident will push them into caring.


May 4th, 2012 at 9:50 PM ^

Even reading the comments on  Eleven Warriors, many of focused not on how it could possibly come about that a sex offender could be seen in photographs with recruits, but how this would affect the larger recruiting picture, I was pretty stunned that it seemed like "business as usual" inside the fanbase at least. There were some more enlightened replies here and there, but rants about Urban and recruiting were prevalent, not this story per se. 

It also seems like the athletic department isn't doing enough to change the culture if you have  Neal and now Anzalone decommiting for reasons which they indicate are larger than the programs themselves, and I start to get the feeling that perhaps it may be something even more substantial than what has happened here. Obviously, safety being a good fifth or sixth (possibly) on the list is not new at Ohio - I hope something like this makes them reconsider that too. 



May 4th, 2012 at 8:17 PM ^

As was the case during the Penn State... happenings, Sexual Predator jokes will not be tolerated. Please be good everyone.


May 4th, 2012 at 8:51 PM ^

But once this is over we can resume the jokes, right? I'm no use to this board without jokes.

In regards to the actual topic of discussion, how long has this Waugh guy been around the program? If he's been giving out illegal benefits such as meals, drinks, etc. to recruits for a while, the NCAA might have to investigate again.

turd ferguson

May 4th, 2012 at 9:44 PM ^

I'd imagine that they will investigate this.  This is serious stuff, and in the wake of the Penn State scandal, this will be in the front of the NCAA's mind.  That doesn't necessarily mean that they'll investigate with an eye on how to punish OSU, but at the very least, they should investigate to try to figure out if there are ways to keep today's student-athletes safer.


May 4th, 2012 at 8:27 PM ^

But that it is in NO WAY related to this current situation. Like, Luke Fickell has uncontrollable flatulence, or Urban Meyer kept calling him "Tom."

Anyone hoping there's more to the sexual predator piece of the story needs to reevaluate some stuff.

turd ferguson

May 4th, 2012 at 9:08 PM ^

Come to think of it, Fickell having uncontrollable flatulence is completely consistent with Lewis Neal's explanation for why he decommitted:

It's too personal, I can't tell you because then it'll end up everywhere. If everyone knew the real reason, then some of the fans wouldn’t be coming at me like that. Because my reason is legit, and you would clearly understand. It has nothing to do with football.

Are we breaking news here?

Leaders And Best

May 4th, 2012 at 8:18 PM ^

Most telling quote in the article: "Something's just not right at Ohio State," Sal Anzalone said. "It's not for him."

Urban Meyer should put that up the next time he wants to make a poster comparing Ohio to Michigan.


May 4th, 2012 at 8:20 PM ^

You people need to seriously sit back and check yourselves. Some of you are getting WAY too carried away with this whole football rivalry thing.


May 4th, 2012 at 10:48 PM ^

Is someone from Ohio actually saying that people in Ann Arbor are getting "WAY too carried away with this whole football rivalry thing?"  That's like Sean Payton saying that your team needs to pay more attention to sportsmanship.  

"Owl:" I know you didn't mean it that way, but your post is the funniest one I have seen here all year. 

As for the actual subject of the thread, it looks like this could gut Meyer's class if he doesn't "circle the wagons" quickly.  It doesn't surprise me much, either.  A lot of shady people have been allowed into the "inner circle" of Ohio's football program the last few years.  

Then again, 14 players convicted of misdemeanors didn't sway many recruits from Michigan State, so Ohio might not lose too many more.  We'll know shortly.


May 5th, 2012 at 12:42 AM ^

A sick human being unaffiliated with OSU took pictures with some football recruits. That is odd, I grant that. However, to extrapolate from this that Urban Meyer is a terrible human being who runs a dirty program is premature and irresponsible. Furthermore, to take glee in this happening to a rival (which some seem to be doing) is extreme. I am here because I love Michigan football/ hockey. That doesn’t mean that I have to be unreasonable about it to the point of comparing Urban Meyer to Sandusky, as someone in this thread did. It is the realm of Mlive, not mgoblog. That sort of behavior should hardly be emulated, and I want it nowhere near my University. That you’d prefer I conform to it is disheartening.


May 4th, 2012 at 11:38 PM ^

It could be (and I hope it is) that circling the wagons won't be enough for Urban.  Think about this... Tressel had a shady program with the same shady fans and characters involved in the program that are still fans of the program.  The difference is that Tressel recruited the vast majority of his players from Ohio, where they have the same mindset of "Buckeye victories at all costs," and like that all the fans are so "involved" because it's a basically a religion.  Meyer is now recruiting the vast majority of his players from outside of Ohio, where they haven't been brainwashed into loving Ohio more than their mothers, so when they see the weird cooler pooper behavior there, some of them see it for what it is- weird.  Maybe this is an indication that Meyer opening up the walls around Ohio has broader ramifications than are obvious initially.


May 5th, 2012 at 1:06 AM ^

Dude, the issue is that this campus is WAY too overrun with people of "poverty". You go down to 4th and 5th off High St., and it's like a "mild" corner from South Chicago. That's a very impulsive comparison, but you can hopefully understand the message in my words. The veracity of this situation is that the University should be more wary of the precarious situations people could find themselves in if they're from, say, Pennsylvania. You know as well as me that if YOUR seventeen year old son (one of the nation's top recruits mind you) was wandering around campus AT NIGHT, you might lose some sleep.

I live right by Lane. Am I safe? Well, let's look at recent events you may recall:

1.) Nov 11'

2.) Mar 12'

Anzalone is a minor, correct? OSU should take full responsibility for his official visit. Stop deflecting the blame.


May 5th, 2012 at 6:51 AM ^

really sum things up nicely. I expect my kid, on his official visit, would be supervised. If the coaching staff isn't supervising him, then you can't expect they will later on.

This is not a dig on OSU, as this is how I assume most programs do things. The idea of in loco parentis went out a generation or more ago. Any regular college kid isn't going to be supervised, but might not be as big a target as these athletes.


May 6th, 2012 at 5:35 PM ^

I thought it was an official. Third total, no? Well, in any event, I'm not sure that I know if my brash response was due to the general nature of this topic itself, or the general nature of the heartland fan shown above. IMO, University officials should take more action into making this campus a safer place. Anzalone felt uneasy about his encounter with what seems to be a common, unnerving, profiled person...

I don't know. But more supervision was obviously necessary here. And if not, I'd just like to see less rationalizing from Coumbus as a whole and more measures to make this campus - safer. To put it simply, safer.

To say: "This could've happened anywhere. We're just unlucky" is a very...perfunctory statement.

Now when I say; "I read this in the Lantern and it doesn't surprise me" is similar to the above statement and is what I think he meant to say. Not good.

Not good for recruiting, for Urban, for the program, and the University in general.



May 6th, 2012 at 7:12 PM ^

Campus is safe, I don't know what you're talking about. If you expect areas of off-campus housing in a major city to be as safe as a place like Ann Arbor, then that's unrealistic. You'd have to move the campus to a new town. What more can OSU do? Provide a campus officer to every one of the 55,000 students walking around at night?


May 6th, 2012 at 7:08 PM ^

Columbus is a major city. There's poor poeple there, what is your point? That OSU shouldn't have people go there because poor people are nearby? The picture shows the kid in a bar or a restaurant, not some back alley off King Ave. and finally it wasn't even an official visit. I don't understand what OSU should have done differently?


May 5th, 2012 at 8:57 AM ^

I don't even disagree with most of what you're saying, but why do you have to be such a condescending douchebag about it? "You people"? Relax buddy, it's an Internet message board. 

Also, you just finished your sophomore year. Go get drunk.


May 4th, 2012 at 8:20 PM ^

People need to be sensitive about this. OSU aside, there really isn't anything funny about this. This is, even on the face of it, a terribly serious issue.


May 4th, 2012 at 8:32 PM ^

Sensitive to common human decency. We are, at the end of the day, a sports faction. Granted. We despise our aversaries. Granted. But this is, apparently, about a sexual predator who had access to children, and the fallout. At the very least, it seems to be about ths.

Do not crow about this. Do not celebrate this. I guarantee you I hate OSU as much as the nect man, but as is not about the Wolverines against the Buckeyes. This is not a Shadenfreude situation.

So again, I implore my comrades, be sensitive about this.


May 4th, 2012 at 8:40 PM ^

I think we all agree that the stuff with the sexual predator is deplorable, and (hopefully) no one is taking glee in that part of things.

His point, I think, is that it seems like there whatever else is under the surface is unrelated, and may just involve generic things in Ohio that we would normally feel comfortable laughing at. Those things are fair game.


May 4th, 2012 at 8:45 PM ^

I don't think it's really about the creeper, though.  These players are "children" in a technical sense, but they're not helpless little innocents either.  By that I mean, I doubt they'd decommit from a place they really wanted to go to school and play football over a couple chance encounters with a creepazoid.  There has GOT to be more to it than just a pissant sex offender.  There's something else about Ohio State causing these players to decommit.

P.S. - I'm not the one downvoting you.  Your point is fair, I just think it's missing the rest of the story.