Are Pryor’s violations correlated with last year’s gear thefts?

The recent allegations against Terrelle Pryor are more interesting when viewed in the context of another, apparently forgotten story from last year.

On the day before the Iowa game, university administrators announced that someone stole several pairs of shoes from the OSU football team’s locker room.

From the 10tv news report on the matter:

“School officials said 10 pairs of shoes were stolen from the locker room, including some belonging to Terrelle Pryor, Daniel Herron, Cameron Heyward, Chimdi Checkwa and Devier Posey.

“The thief stole four pairs of shoes belonging to Pryor alone… The university said the thefts were likely an inside job.”

Consider that information against one of the allegations contained within the SI article:

“Ellis estimates that Pryor alone brought in more than 20 items, including game-worn shoulder pads, multiple helmets, , the Best Futsal Shoes, Nike cleats, jerseys, game pants and more. One day Ellis asked Pryor how he was able to take so much gear from the university’s equipment room. Ellis says the quarterback responded, ‘I get whatever I want.'”

And, finally, an interesting few sentences from yesterday’s ESPN article:

“[The Former Friend] said Pryor would get the merchandise to sign from Talbott, who would ‘bring it to TP, and he would sign it and he would bring him cash…’ He said he witnessed the transactions occur about three to four times a week at Pryor’s apartment.

“The former friend said Pryor would spend his money lavishly at times, that the player had a ‘shoe fetish…'”

I want to be clear: I’m not accusing Pryor of anything. I’m only pointing out an interesting circumstantial correlation in the stories, and wondering if anyone else has investigated this.

And if not, why? Don’t tell me that we’re the first ones to bring this up.

Comments

  1. Nice job Monkey! Asking the tough questions.

    I had completely forgotten about the thefts.

  2. Jay Roubini says

    Likely to remain just allegations especially since it doesn’t appear Pryor wants to talk about anything. Some sources say the focus was shifted to TP from inside the administration as some sort of scapegoat to take the heat off of Gene Smith, blame the greedy player. Who wants the focus on the administration when it was only months ago E. Gordon Gee was publicly making fun of the football programs at Boise St and TCU.

  3. Jay Roubini says

    Nobody wants to focus on the administration, it’s all about TP, funny how everything was hunky dory after their short 10 day investigation in December when Smith was in hurry-up mode maybe not wanting to spoil his Sugar Bowl seating plans. OSU wants to keep around this guy who said back then “we’re very fortunate we do not have a systemic problem in our program.” Now a short 5 months later it’s pressure the kid out. The whole AD bunch are rats, presiding over a culture of dishonest bafoonery.

  4. @jay – thanks for stopping by.

    I’m confused about your Gee-Pryor-Boise argument; not sure how they’re related to each other or how Boise had anything to do with tattoos.

    In all seriousness, if you objectively look at the circumstances there’s no “systemic problem” unless you re-define what a systemic problem is. To the NCAA, a systemic problem implies documented pervasive wrongdoing through an entire athletic department. There’s none of that here.

    E.g., you brought up Boise – _their_ current violations are the definition of ‘systemic’: men’s football, track, and tennis; and women’s tennis and track. All players, coaches, and department heads involved. The coaches gave out thousands of dollars’ worth of free meals, housing, and transportation for several summers in a row.

    Again, OSU’s situation is not similar at all… what role exactly did Smith or Gee play? You mention a “10-day hurry up mode investigation” but we’ve learned nothing over the past couple of months that changes anything that we learned then – with the one glaring exception of finding out that Tressel lied. But he was forced to resign for that.

    Everything else that has been alleged since then has either been completely exaggerated and falsified (e.g., cars) or just plain made up (e.g, pryor’s 40k per year in memorabilia sales).

    Also, how exactly did they “push out” Pryor? The kid was suspended for five games, and only stayed on the team in the first place because of a public promise he made to Tressel. Once Tressel resigned, he was released from that obligation. So he left. Everyone would do the same thing.

    I do agree with your “buffoonery” comment though. This whole situation is definitely handled by buffoons.

  5. Jay Roubini says

    @ sportsmonkey~ “how exactly did they push out Pryor”? you got your answer today didn’t you? ended with the Fickell snub!!!!! Don’t you think it was odd moments after JT was forced to resign it was leaked that TP was the focus of the NCAA investigation? It sure wasn’t the NCAA revealing that info, it had to come from the AD.

    Why? to deflect questions surrounding it’s own investigation in December that hadn’t uncovered a more systemic problem within the football program. Do you think the OSU athletic dept. was that inept it hadn’t informed it’s players not to sell autographed memorabilia? then to have the audacity to petition to reinstate players because “they were not properly educated” with that issue? Only a 10 day investigation after being informed by the U.S. Attorney’s office that several star players were linked to a federal drug trafficking investigation? ridiculous how could it not be a coverup- Bowl money was at stake, not to mention a win-able SEC game. (Barely win-able.)

    Do you see the hypocrisy now? Maybe the AD didn’t know what JT knew then but they knew enough about the gold pants, Rose Bowl & Big Ten rings, autographed jerseys, helmets, cleats, gloves, footballs and possibly the stolen equipment you mentioned that a 10 day investigation was certainly sweeping it under the carpet mighty quick.

    So now who benefits from TP becoming the focus of fan as well as media scrutiny? the OSU AD. Also it wasn’t like Big Ten commissioner didn’t know what a hurry-up joke that all was back in December. He as well lobbied for reinstatement of the star players. Then you got this clueless Gee dogging other programs and acting like Tressel was untouchable, buffoons, at least we agree on that. Interesting to watch how the wheels of manipulation turn, hoping to watch Fickell evolve and become his own man leading this beloved program back.

  6. @jay – “it was odd moments after JT was forced to resign it was leaked that TP was the focus of the NCAA investigation…”

    I’m honestly not sure what you mean, here. There was nothing new that focused on Pryor after JT’s resignation other than the false ’40k-per-yr’ allegations that Pryor’s former roommate alleged to the media.

    So you’re implying that the OSU AD conspired with the roommate to create a lie for the media, in order to distract them from the dept? Wow.

    Re: “to deflect questions surrounding it’s own investigation in December that hadn’t uncovered a more systemic problem within the football program.”

    Again, what they didn’t uncover in December was that JT lied. What else did they miss? Seriously, tell me: what specifically did they miss during that investigation, other than the fact that JT had lied about not knowing?

    And what did they “cover up?” Other than your allegation that the AD is in cahoots with Pryor’s old roommate.

    “Do you think the OSU athletic dept. was that inept it hadn’t informed it’s players not to sell autographed memorabilia? then to have the audacity to petition to reinstate players because “they were not properly educated” with that issue?”

    Again, not sure what point you’re trying to make here. Neither I, nor anybody else, thinks or claims that the dept. didn’t educate the kids that it was wrong. There’s no question that the athletic and compliance depts properly informed those players – all of them said “they told us it was wrong” – proving that (1) there’s no question the players were told, and (2) that the players understood what they were doing was wrong. So not sure what you’re getting at. Sometimes kids do bad things.

    “Bowl money was at stake, not to mention a win-able SEC game.”

    You’re absolutely correct about this – but remember:
    (1) The decision to allow the kids to remain eligible for the Sugar Bowl WAS MADE BY THE NCAA, NOT the OSU AD.
    (2) We know now that the Sugar Bowl Executive Committee were the ones who pressured the NCAA to allow the players to play. And no doubt they did that on behalf of Allstate, who was sponsoring the bowl and didn’t particularly like the idea of losing 1 million viewers. The myth that ‘Smith lobbied the Sugar Bowl’ is nonsense – OSU and the B10 make the same money from the Sugar Bowl whether or not they win or lose or Pryor & Herron play or not. The only issue at hand was a monetary one – and only the Sugar Bowl and Allstate would have been hurt.
    (3) Even after being granted eligibility, JT only allowed them to play on the condition that they publicly apologize and promise to return the following year.

    I’ll grant you the hypocrisy angle – this whole situation is filled with disgusting hypocrisy on every angle. The OSU athletic dept actually sells player-autographed memorabilia for profit, for instance. WHICH REMINDS ME ABOUT HOW STUPID AND TRIVIAL THIS ENTIRE ISSUE IS. Grr.

  7. Jay Roubini says

    “roommate” what the…I’m sittin’ here trying to explain things to a double talkin’ Monkey…somebody shoot me please… let me spell it out YOUR BEING MANIPULATED…the focus was shifted by OSU AD to PRYOR… http://undergroundsportsnetwork.net/site/2011/05/31/a-day-after-jim-tressels-resignation-ncaas-prob-now-focuses-on-pryors-cars/

    I’ll be the last to defend Pryor on anything, I was right about him years ago, let the Johnny Utah’s defend that moron but I won’t be hood winked by some overpaid AD who wasn’t doing his job in the first place. There will be more coming out on the effort going on here by OSU officials to conceal how the school even first discovered the emails between JT and the attorney Cicero and that my friend appears significant enough that we may be facing crippling NCAA penalties.

  8. @Jay – Ah, OK… you answered my question. (Well, one of them, anyway.) You’re still specifically talking about the CAR investigation.

    Even though:
    (1) the link you provided says nothing about Smith shifting focus to Pryor at all. Yeah, I guess the media would have completely left Pryor alone following JT’s resignation, if it hadn’t been for the meddling AD. Whether or not the starting QB for the Rose Bowl stays or leaves for the NFL is clearly not a newsworthy item worth the media’s time, but I guess it seems conceivable in some universe that the media would have gotten a call from Smith encouraging them to demonize Pryor so that he can keep his own job. Sure… *rolls eyes, whistles, backs away*

    (2) the whole ‘cars’ thing has been debunked and dropped. It was an invention of the Columbus Dispatch, who later ran a retraction. Still, OSU, the NCAA, and even the independent state of Ohio BMV conducted an investigation and also confirmed there was nothing. I’m not going to waste time explaining this, but some interesting reading for you: http://tinyurl.com/3qorxth

    So not only is there zero evidence to back up your allegation that Smith is responsible for the focus change in order to draw attention away from himself, but there’s zero motivation for him to do it anyway. And that leaves just one possibility – the media started focusing on Pryor because his decision to leave the school and go to the NFL was just plain NEWSWORTHY.

    I’ll have mixed feelings about Pryor. Maybe it’s the fact that I’m getting older now and have kids who make dumb mistakes too. I’m disappointed in him, I shake my head, I feel bad about his selfishness. But he’s paying for that and then some. I hope he does well. I know that if he does, I’ll enjoy watching him play.

    “There will be more coming out on the effort going on here by OSU officials to conceal how the school even first discovered the emails between JT and the attorney Cicero”

    A-HA. And that is where we realize that you’ve been reading Sports By Brooks. Which you really shouldn’t do. Seriously. Ever. Or at least, if you do, don’t admit it to your friends. Think of SBB like it’s a terrible faked reality show, like “jersey shore” or something, where you may watch, but are too embarrassed to let anyone know you go there. Because they’d look at you and say, “Oh. That’s all I really needed to know.” You could say something insightful and awesome and deep and meaningful about the artistic quality of an Oscar-winning film and your friends would be thinking in their heads “yeah but he watches Jersey Shore.”

  9. Jay Roubini says

    hey sportsMonkey~ We can just disagree for now. Sometimes things don’t need to be spelled out, media manipulation is a powerful tool. Maybe new information will come to light that reinforces my suspicions but it isn’t a stretch for me to see that it had been predetermined that Pryor would never take another snap at OSU. A decision likely planned by officials well in advance to commence with the Memorial Day resignation of Tressel. The article I enclosed was only to refresh the notion that OSU officials (doesn’t have to spell out Smith diverts attention) quickly “released” information directing the media focus to Pryor and we assume included instructions to Fickell to stop contact with and not to return calls from Pryor “The Snub”. You see even at that late hour Pryor was still planning to complete his senior year.

    As fans we should hope some of the details do get swept under the carpet so we can get on with next season and rooting for the team but there’s also the part where we want accountability, to know the truth of the matter, how it all went down.

  10. I agree, this whole issue is stupid and trivial.

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