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ESPN Going Easy On Tressel, OSU? Uh, No

From across the SEC — and especially from Tennessee and Alabama — they pour in… emails telling me that ESPN isn’t going after Jim Tressel and Ohio State with the same gusto with which they pursued UT’s Bruce Pearl and/or Auburn’s Cam Newton.

But just to set the record straight, ESPN’s Pat Forde has now called for Tressel’s head on a plate.

ESPN’s Ivan Maisel has also made it clear that the writing is on the wall.

Meanwhile, former Buckeyes Kirk Herbstreit — video here — and Chris Spielman — video here — are showing some serious backbone, too.  The two ESPN analysts aren’t holding back in their assessment of the situation:
Spielman: “I’m a good friend of Jim Tressel’s and if my son’s ever good enough to play for Ohio State I want him to play for Jim Tressel.  That being said, I do believe his intention was to protect the players first and foremost.  However, he still lost sight of his contract and what he’s obligated to do. … I think he probably, if he had it all to do over again, (would) get up, grab the emails, walk 10 feet down the hall, take a left and hand them over to the compliance office.  Every college football coach is put in this situation on a daily basis and they are trained — according to the college football coaches that I’ve talked to — that anytime they get a phone call or email of player misconduct, they hand it over to compliance.  And that’s where he went wrong.  I think his intent was pure, but his actions justify the punishment that’s coming his way, in my opinion.”

Herbstreit: “The fact that he was vague or not forthcoming with information initially with the NCAA… I mean when you get into that area, that’s a danger zone when it comes to coaches and their involvement with the NCAA.  And there are countless examples of coaches — that when they’ve decided to do that — they are no longer staying onboard as the head coach. … It’s just a real black eye on the entire university.”
Considering those fellows played at OSU, those are some pretty strong comments.  And then there’s this from Herbstreit:
“The Ohio State fanbase, blindedly, are just supporting Ohio State and Jim Tressel.  I mean, it’s almost gotten to the point (where) he beats Michigan, he wins 10 games, he goes to BCS bowl games… they’ll support him no matter what he does, as far as the fanbase. … It goes to show you — when you win games and you win championships and you beat Michigan then a lot of fans… they’ll find a way and a reason to twist any kind of story to try to be pro-Ohio State.”
Hmmm.  Sounds like some Tennessee fans with Pearl, Auburn fans with Newton, Kentucky fans when it comes to questions regarding John Calipari’s reputation, etc, etc.

We all see things through our own lenses.  That’s why fans of School X never understand why anyone would ever dare question School X.

It’s also why many fans of School X always believe School Y is getting off easier than the ol’ School X did.

But in this case — if Ohio State is School Y — the Buckeyes and Tressel are getting wall-to-wall coverage just like Pearl and Newton, Tennessee and Auburn.  The only difference is Tressel’s case broke just two months ago.  Give it time and you’ll find that the national media won’t let up on OSU any more than it has let up on Auburn or did let up on Tennessee prior to Pearl’s dismissal.

I’m not the world’s biggest fan of ESPN.  As I’ve written previously, I think it’s dangerous for a network that own various leagues, bowls, and games to also act as the largest news source covering those leagues, bowls and games.  But in this instance, any objective viewer can see that the four-letter network is covering Ohio State just as it covered UT and AU… right down to the infamous timeline graphics.

A friend of mine from Cleveland emailed me last week to say how sick she is of ESPN’s non-stop, anti-OSU coverage.  I just smiled.  If she and other OSU fans could only hear how some folks outside of Ohio believe ESPN is actually going easy on their Buckeyes.

It’s all about perspective.

 


8 comments
johnmrsec
johnmrsec

brandon...

Okay. All fans except Kentucky fans see things through their own lenses. We all have a perspective... but not Kentucky fans.

Got it.

John

HoustonVol
HoustonVol

There was chatter after the press conference, but not wall to wall coverage. When the story broke, Tressell had the luxury of being able to hide behind Pearl and basketball coverage in general. Now that the Letter has arrived, and we are in a slow news period, people are starting to take a first, second and third look at what actually happened at TOSU. People do not like the way it smelled. Just like at UT, when it first happened people were rationalizing keeping Pearl; he came clean, it was just a bbq, etc, etc. Then when the layers kept being pulled back exposing more dirt, and then UT got the letter, the majority of UT fans accepted that Pearl had to go. Tressel is now in the same boat. The more people look at it, the more that they will accept that he has to go. The first actions (not turning over the info) is not what will doom Tressel. It is the contact the mentor, signing off in August that he knew of no issues, and then lying again in December that will have him "retiring" this summer.

adam
adam

Really, Well they just now started after the letter arrived. With TN it started as soon as press conference was over and never stopped until Pearl got fired. You are either bias or a idiot. You decide I already have.

johnmrsec
johnmrsec

adam...

You're the one who tosses around ugly names, so I'll let the other readers decide about you.

But if you haven't seen the timeline graphics on Tressel or the numerous calls for his head until this week, you haven't been watching. And that's out of season. Pearl's issues -- and Newton's -- began IN season. More games, more coverage. But the message has been the same.

But since you haven't been watching -- or paying attention -- you should probably refrain from commenting.

John

Matt
Matt

Im glad ESPN isnt in bad with a school or conference. Take note mainstream media

JDoug
JDoug

Huh??? There is wall to wall coverage on Cam Newton??? I must be viewing different web pages than you. How is that investigation going? How is the investigation at Oregon going? I hear crickets.

johnmrsec
johnmrsec

JDoug...

I don't even follow what you're saying.

If you don't think the Cam Newton story was the most covered story of the past 6 months, then NO, you're not paying attention. Newton has been a lightning rod for months.

As for Oregon, what are the allegations? So far there has been one regarding Willie Lyles. No coaches lying, no players' parents admitting to asking for cash.

John

Trackbacks

  1. [...] Latest Bama News 4/26/2011 ESPN GOING EASY ON TRESSEL, OSU? UH, NO clicky Reply With Quote + Reply to [...]

  2. [...] Some believe that ESPN’s coverage on Jim Tressel has been light. John Pennington doesn’t. (MrSEC) [...]



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