Fort Myers Miracle to Host Jim Tressel ‘Rest the Vest’ Night

At one time associated with unrivaled success and a five-star football school, the name Jim Tressel will now likely become permanently attached to what turned out to be a dirty program.  You could certainly argue that most of what Tressel and his players were caught doing is commonplace across NCAA Division 1 athletics, but with the help of Sports Illustrated Tressel and company have become the microcosm for rule-breaking.

While there is still a lot of uncertainty surrounding who will be the next coach at The Ohio State University, we know one thing for certain: he won’t be rocking a sweater vest.  For that reason, the Twins’ minor league affiliate Fort Myers Miracle has decided to host a “Rest the Vest” night to acknowledge Ohio State fans and the disappointment they have been dealing with.

The Miracle — the same team who brought us bullpen hazing via the Justin Bieber backpack — is encouraging fans to bring their sweater vests to Hammond Stadium on Monday, June 6 and place them in a retirement bin near the front gate.  Those fans who participate will be given the opportunity to test drive a sports car from Classic Cars of Florida.

Promotions are always a good way for minor league clubs to draw a crowd, but this seems like a bit of a stretch to me.  For one thing, they’re in Florida and closer to Gator country.  I understand there are Ohio State fans all over the country, but I’m skeptical many of them would go to a minor league game for a chance to test drive a sports car.  More importantly, sweater vests aren’t cheap.  With the exception of an actual Ohio State sweater vest, why would you just give a nice piece of clothing away because Tressel happened to wear one?  I certainly wouldn’t, but I guess you can’t blame the Miracle for trying.

Chest bump to Darren Rovell on Twitter for the story.

Sports Illustrated Article on Ohio State Football Exposes Jim Tressel, Program

Jim Tressel resigned from his job as head football coach at Ohio State Monday morning, knowing fully well neither he nor the university would be able to face the media after the contents of Sports Illustrated’s report were revealed. SI had reporters George Dohrmann and David Epstein collaborate on a special that digs deeper into the existing issues we knew about Ohio State (read the entire report here).

The Buckeyes were already punished for having six players trade memorabilia for tattoos — a violation of NCAA rules. On top of that, the hookups players had with a car dealership had come under scrutiny based on Terrelle Pryor’s driving record. The words of former Ohio State basketball player Mark Titus corroborated the reports that Buckeyes football players were getting hookups at a dealership (also a violation of NCAA rules). Now we’re left with a more in-depth look at the blatant rule-breaking going on at Ohio State.

In short, SI refutes in such indisputable detail the notion that the merchandise-for-tattoo trades were limited to a select few members of the football team. That defeats Ohio State’s first defense argument where they tried to pin the actions on an isolated few members of the team. Additionally, they expose Jim Tressel as a fraud. Tressel built a reputation as a man of integrity over his ten years at Ohio State. He was someone who preached religious values and respect. Yet this is the same coach who lied to the NCAA and lied to school investigators.

On top of that, SI mentions the story of Tressel lying to a school investigator when he was at Youngstown State, something Sports by Brooks reported last month. The SI report also says Tressel fixed raffle drawings while he was an assistant coach at Ohio State in the ’80s so that prizes at a football camp went to elite recruits.

Not only does SI’s report show us that trading memorabilia for tattoo (and weed) was prevalent throughout the football program, it also destroys Jim Tressel’s individual character by showing how hypocritical he was. Here are some more of the juicy details they uncover.

[Read more...]

Michigan Fans Buy Jim Tressel ‘Liar Liar, Vest on Fire’ Billboard

Things are looking up for the University of Michigan. Not only did they part ways with Rich Rodriguez and bring in a new coach, but their rival Ohio State is under fire for a tattoo-merchandise scandal. The most controversial part of the scandal is that Ohio State coach Jim Tressel covered up the violations committed by his players and lied about it to authorities. In light of this, some Michigan fans decided to take a shot at Tressel by purchasing this billboard on I-94:

That picture comes to us courtesy of Douglas Ray Williams on twitter via Kegs ‘N Eggs. If anything, I would consider it revenge for this billboard put up two years ago in Columbus. Whether it’s flyover airplanes or billboards, college football fans love tweaking their rivals. I can’t complain.

As for Tressel, we’re learning that lying to school officials is a pattern for him dating back to his Youngstown State days.

Jim Tressel Lied Again: Forwarded Emails to Terrelle Pryor’s Mentor Ted Sarniak

The more the saga of Jim Tressel covering up for his Ohio State players goes on, the more the clean-cut sweater vest look seems to be a facade. To recap, five Ohio State players were suspended five games in 2011 for exchanging athletic merchandise for free tattoos — an NCAA violation. Inexplicably the players were allowed to participate in — and help Ohio State win — its Sugar Bowl game despite the NCAA knowing about the violations.

Later it was discovered that Jim Tressel was tipped off about the tattoos yet he elected not to do anything about it. Furthermore, he made matters worse by lying to his school and NCAA officials about his knowledge of the situation. Now, the Columbus Dispatch reports that Jim Tressel actually forwarded the emails to quarterback Terrelle Pryor’s mentor, Ted Sarniak.

If Tressel in fact forwarded the emails to Sarniak as the Dispatch reports, it would confirm the suspicion Sports by Brooks had based on this video, in addition to destroying Tressel’s defense that he didn’t address the emails because he wanted to keep things confidential.

And if you’re wondering who this mentor Ted Sarniak is, MGoBlog has you covered. According to their research, he’s a Pittsburgh businessman who owns a glass company and who has bribed police in the past. He represented Terrelle Pryor during his recruitment period and was likely involved in his recruiting visits. Oh yeah, he may or may not have also loaned a corvette to Pryor at some point during his life. It’s one nice, clean circle, isn’t it?

Jim Tressel Covered Up His Players’ Violations Multiple Times, Emails Show

Ohio State coach Jim Tressel knew about his players’ involvement in exchanging team merchandise and autographs for tattoos back in April of 2010, email records posted on NBC4 in Columbus via Sports by Brooks show. Tressel was tipped off on April 2nd by an attorney who knew the tattoo parlor owner was under investigation by the government for alleged drug trafficking. Responding to that email, Tressel said “I will get on it ASAP.” A second email on April 16th detailed the extent of the Buckeyes merchandise found in the tattoo parlor, including conference championship rings, cleats, and jerseys. In response, Tressel wrote “I will keep pounding these kids hoping they grow up.”

READ: Terrelle Pryor tattoo and loaner car controversies

Tressel claims the reason he never reported these emails to the school’s compliance officers is because he believed the information was confidential and that the federal trial superseded NCAA penalties. Say we buy that, what you can’t get past are the numerous occasions thereafter that Tressel was devious.

[Read more...]