SIAP: Pryor Admits that Sarniak gave him money after he enrolled at OSU

Submitted by WilliSC48 on August 16th, 2011 at 5:37 PM

I didn't see anything on the front page about this. I don't think I've seen anything in the media about this even though he apparently admitted to it in May.

Pryor had met confidentially in May with the NCAA and provided financial records in response to follow-up requests from those investigators. Pryor had acknowledged that confidant Ted Sarniak had provided him and his mother with cash after he enrolled at Ohio State over and beyond the memorabilia scandal that created the five-game suspension. These violations all took place before Jan. 15, the deadline for underclassmen to declare for the April draft, not after.



August 16th, 2011 at 5:45 PM ^

this makes the NCAA's decision not to level a charge of lack of control/failure to monitor even more puzzling.  Of course the NCAA has left the door open somewhat with their letter saying they are still investigating, but it makes you wonder why they just did not put off the August hearing and expand those charges with this other information.


August 16th, 2011 at 5:49 PM ^

It's a little more complicated.  The NCAA eventually ruled that Sarniak was not a booster at the time of Pryor's recruitment, however, OSU did inform Sarniak that he could no longer provide Pryor with any money.  I think that's all the NCAA really cares about, in terms of FTM or LOIC.  OSU was monitoring the Sarniak situation.  If Pryor still took money from him, that's on Pryor, not OSU.


August 16th, 2011 at 6:19 PM ^

I think you're taking "monitoring" a little too literally.

The university can tell the booster to back off.  They can tell the player to stop.  What else do you expect a university to do (change OSU to some other random school in your head)?


August 16th, 2011 at 6:51 PM ^

Keep track of money coming the Player's way, and if there's any hint of wrong-doing AGAIN, make him come clean and/or dump him.
<br>Remember CRex's story about all the paperwork just to get a car repair done? Don't tell me when you're actually watching a player who got in trouble you can track what's going on in his life. Unless your Mitch Albom Fab Five head in the sand level of denial.


August 16th, 2011 at 10:38 PM ^

The NCAA issued the current NOA in March or April (can't remember the exact date), which is before Pryor is supposed to have met with the NCAA and disclosed the Sarniak violations. The NCAA and OSU have been very clear that the letter OSU received from the NCAA a couple of months ago stating that no LOIC/FTM had been found and the recent hearing only cover matters in the current NOA. The NCAA has no doubt been investigating whatever Pryor disclosed to them in May and will, eventually, issue a second NOA covering those violations.

The NCAA is almost certainly still investigating many of the reports of additional violations surrounding Pryor that surfaced late this spring and early this summer, including all of the automobiles Pryor drove during his time as a student at OSU and the Dennis Talbott relationship. Those investigations likely explain the delay in issuing a second NOA covering whatever violations Pryor disclosed to the NCAA in May. But, regardless of whether the NCAA can ever prove any violations related to the automobiles or Dennis Talbott, the fact that Pryor has admitted to additional violations involving Sarniak guarantees that the NCAA eventually will issue a second NOA at some point. The NCAA is not just going to let those violations pass because Pryor is now gone from OSU.

Second NOA = BOOM!!!

[Note: The above assumes that Chris Mortensen's ESPN story is true insofar as it states that Pryor met with the NCAA in May and admitted to additional violations involving Sarniak. This is the first I have heard anything of the sort, but I assume Chris Mortenson and ESPN have a firm basis for what they've reported.]


August 16th, 2011 at 6:33 PM ^

Wait, so technically isn't Pryor ineligible as of the first moment he received illegal benefits?

Meaning that nearly all of Pryor's career would need to be vacated, similar to what USC had to do with Bush?

I know vacated wins don't mean much in the grand scheme of things, but it would have to sting buckeye fans to have to pretend like the last 3 seasons never happened. 

Is it possible that the NCAA will require OSU to vacate those wins when the verdict finally comes down?


August 16th, 2011 at 9:36 PM ^

Based on the NCAA's findings they submitted to OSU in July, I suspect that they were already going to force OSU to vacate the 2009 season.

On page 4, about half way down the page there is a bullet point that states that six OSU players who had received impermissible benefits from Rife's tattoo parlor participated in football games in the Fall of 2009.


August 16th, 2011 at 6:38 PM ^

Since you cannot prove a negative--like a faiure to monitor--it seems to me that OSU has the burden of proving that they were adequately monitoring the situation---especially given the fact that Tressel's previous AD told him he did not adequately report NCAA violations.


So where is the proof that Smith was adequately monitoring Tressel?  Did Smith talk to TP and Sarniak regularly? 

DId Smith ask Tressel about his communications with Sarniak?   If so, he should have known at an early stage that Tressel was continuing to spend hours phoning and text messaging Sarniak--even after the NCAA indicated that Sarniak's relationship with TP and the university needed to change.  Smith could claim that Tressel lied to him, but where is the proof that Smith even asked? 

Smith kept no written records of the JT evaluations.

Finally, given the frequency of Tressel's comuniations with Sarniak, isn't it also likely also that Tressel knew all too well about the continuing improper relationship between Sarniak and TP?  Why didn't both Tressel and Smith cut off ties with Sarniak?  Why did Sarniak continue to get free tickets from players?  Or were those tickets not really free but paid to players who sought improper benefits?


August 16th, 2011 at 8:33 PM ^

He doesn't have to prove anything, and that's his point.

The point he was attempting to make was that YOU can prove those things. Of course, there are stipulations, such as being in the physical vicinity of him.. corroborated photographs, etc.

I could have ben all reading comprehension derp derp, but I hate that. No big deal here, but I do like his point.


August 19th, 2011 at 12:49 PM ^

The stipulation of being in my presence, of couse, would go a long way in proving any of those negatives I posted. 

If SysMark were to be in my presence today in order to prove those 4 negatives, I would allow him to prove that

a)  I am NOT dead


b)  I am NOT the moon

However, with respect to proving I am NOT a female and that I am NOT carrying a gun -that was yesterday.  Today, I just might be carrying my gun.  So, proving that I am NOT a female will occur only over my dead body.

Nevertheless, it is still logically possible to do.



August 16th, 2011 at 8:48 PM ^


Why axiomatically of course.
First off, that's axiomatically wrong, because the best pudding is chocolate.
Secondly, the organic structure of tapioca makes it a jiggling bowl of potential death. Tapioca is extracted from the root of the plant Manihot Esculenta. Due to a high concentration of cyanide, it is poisonous in its raw form and lethal if prepared improperly! [takes a drink of water]
So if we assume Euclid to be correct in his fifth postulate we can conclude:
I am NOT dead
I am NOT a female
I am NOT carrying a gun
I am NOT the moon


August 16th, 2011 at 9:19 PM ^

That is, how do you prove that an event , such as the monitoring of athletes, did not happen?  You would, in theory, need to have sampled the behavior of all the personnel at OSU at all the intervals of time between now and some time in the past.

Statistically, I suppose that the lack of a finding of monitoring could, in theory, establish the "lack of monitoring" if your study had sufficient power (ie using a suffiient number of intervals).  But someone at OSU could still claim you neglected to observe the periods of time or the people who did the monitoring.   Also, statistical arguments usually are insufficient in the type of legal reasoning used by the NCAA.

I hope that helps and does not unnecessarily complicate my argument.


August 16th, 2011 at 6:40 PM ^

with how long the alleged "booster" has known the individual? Something similar to the Ed Martin thing - how Jalen and Chris and some other players were able to get "smaller" amounts of money because he had been a long time acquantaince. (of course, when he gave cwebb and others large amounts of money that flew out the door, but, Jalen admitted to getting small spending cash and no harm was done to him)

Of course, i want all this to go as terribly as possible for Ohio, just playing devil's advocate i guess. 


August 16th, 2011 at 6:59 PM ^

He was considered by Pryor -- and maybe by OSU and the NCAA -- to be a longtime benefactor of Pryor's, almost a parental figure. Or a generous "uncle." If he's not an OSU booster and is considered a family friend then he is allowed to give Pryor gifts.

The NCAA knew about the gifts and, to allay any concerns, OSU apparently asked Sarniak not to continue giving Pryor money.

This seems like a non-issue to me. The signature-selling, if it took place -- was way more serious.


August 16th, 2011 at 7:09 PM ^

It's a very slippery slope though. Would Sarniak cared about Pryor at all if Pryor wasn't a highly-recruited player coming out of high school? If it's okay for Sarniak to give money to Pryor, why wouldn't it be okay for some wealthy person to become an "uncle" to some other highly touted recruit?


August 16th, 2011 at 7:11 PM ^

Am I mixing up my scandals or was there a rumor that "real" OSU boosters were sending Sarniak "business" for placing Pryor at OSU. If Sarniak was in turn paying Pryor and they say he isn't a booster, I guess he's just a money launderer


August 16th, 2011 at 9:31 PM ^

Mark Emmert is not going to punish his mentor, Gordon Gee, any more severely than he is forced to.  He really needs to be removed from the process for a conflict of interest.


August 16th, 2011 at 9:46 PM ^

Pryor had acknowledged that confidant Ted Sarniak had provided him and his mother with cash after he enrolled at Ohio State over and beyond the memorabilia scandal that created the five-game suspension.

Apparently my Sports Mgmt & Comm degree does not allow me to decipher this long ass sentence.  Does that sentence means that he received cash that amounted to more money than the memorabilia for tats scandal?  Or did they mean he talked about Sarniak and the memorabilia for tats?  Online editing is an epic place in tons of places so I'm often left confused.


August 16th, 2011 at 10:09 PM ^

it will be able to nail OSU twice, thus allowing them to impose stiffer penalties.


They nailed USC on much weaker evidenc and slowplayed them to bigger penalties.