1.Ohio State quarterback Terrelle Pryor sold the trinket of gold pants he received after the Buckeyes’ 2008 victory over Michigan. For 75 years, those pants have been awarded to Buckeyes who beat Wolverines. John Hicks, the Ohio State offensive tackle who won the Outland Trophy and Lombardi Award in 1973, called the gold pants “a badge of honor.” Hicks is the exception. Most modern players believe tradition is something for the people in the stands. Pryor may have lost the Buckeye fans forever. But he got his money.
2.The NCAA tries to give the benefit of the doubt to the student-athlete, which is how five Ohio State players remain eligible for the Sugar Bowl despite being suspended for five games next season after selling autographed gear and getting tattoos in exchange. But where’s the logic in the Buckeyes being able to play in the bowl game? The NCAA said the players didn’t know they had broken a rule. How tough is it to know you can’t trade for stuff because you’re a student-athlete?
3.As fall semester grades arrive, players are holding their breathing from Seattle to Coral Gables. Four Georgia Tech players are academically ineligible for the Independence Bowl. Three West Virginia players will miss the Champs Sports Bowl, including two-year starting center Joe Madsen. More to come. The NCAA used to not apply the suspension until after the bowls, which meant nothing to seniors. Let’s hear it for a rule with teeth.