Mt. Vernon Register-News

Z_CNHI News Service

September 17, 2013

OSU hires investigator to look into football team

STILLWATER, Okla. — Oklahoma State University is asking a former NCAA official to look into allegations that its football players were paid, given no-show jobs, allowed to use and deal drugs, and passed through classes they barely attended.

Charles E. Smrt, former enforcement director for the NCAA, will investigate findings of a Sports Illustrated expose, "The Dirty Game," which was based on a 10-month investigation and interviews with more than five dozen former Oklahoma State players.

The five-part SI series focused on the team's rise to prominence, from 2001 through 2011, under former coach Les Miles and assistant coach Mike Gundy, who took the program when Miles left for Louisiana State in 2005.

The university announced its investigation as the final part of the report was posted online, describing a parade of players who had been cast aside by the football program once their best days were done.

The story describes how players, many of whom were at-risk when they arrived in Stillwater, were dismissed or forced to quit once they were injured or didn't live up to expectations. Many left school and are "damaged and downtrodden," according to the report - in prison, paroled, addicted, homeless or unemployed.

Between 2002 and 2010, SI reports, 43.5 percent of Oklahoma State players left school before using all five years of their playing eligibility - a turnover rate it calls "staggering" but that OSU disputes.

Previous installments of the report rocked Stillwater with allegations ranging from rampant drug abuse on the team to stories of recruits enticed to play for Oklahoma State by sex with hostesses in the "Orange Pride" hospitality program. The NCAA has said

“We must determine, based on credible sources and confirmed facts, whether the claims made in a series of Sports Illustrated articles have any truth to them,” said Tucker Link, chairman of the Oklahoma State Board of Regents. Link jointly announced Smrt's appointment with OSU President Burns Hargis.

Text Only
Z_CNHI News Service
  • Lindley, Tom.jpg Is this a commercial for batting gloves or a baseball game?

    Major league baseball desperately needs to speed up the action. Here's a place to start: Nix the mind-numbing ritual of hitters who first adjust the right batting glove, then the left one, after every single pitch.
     

    August 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • Does Twitter need a censor?

    Twitter decided last year to make images more prominent on its site. Now, the social network is finding itself caught between being an open forum and patrolling for inappropriate content.

    August 21, 2014

  • sleepchart.jpg America’s sleep-deprived cities

    Americans might run on sleep, but those living in the country's largest cities don't appear to run on much.

    August 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • Lindley, Tom.jpg Another stumble begs questions about Notre Dame

    Notre Dame's vaunted reputation for formidable athletics and serious academics is again sullied by a cheating scandal. Maybe the high standards of the Fighting Irish are just too good to be true.

    August 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • Five myths about presidential vacations

    In the nuclear age, presidents may have only minutes to make a decision that could affect the entire world. They don't so much leave the White House as they take a miniature version of it with them wherever they go.

    August 15, 2014

  • taylor.armerding.jpg Debate filled with 'hate' gives Hamas a pass

    Political invective is dialed to the max, and everyone who disagrees is a "hater." But the hate police, who are so eager to cast labels, are ignoring the real wells of contempt in the Middle East.

    August 15, 2014 1 Photo

  • Lindley, Tom.jpg OU player's suspension shows pitfalls of addressing sexual assault on campus

    The University of Oklahoma's leading tackler is suspended for the season - or maybe not. Frank Shannon is still practicing with the Sooners amid a court battle over whether OU can discipline him after a sexual assault investigation. The tough issue of addressing assault on campus isn't just OU's problem.

    August 15, 2014 1 Photo

  • weightloss.jpg The scales of injustice: Weight loss differs between men, women

    You're not imagining it: There really are differences between the way men and women diet, lose weight and respond to exercise.

    August 13, 2014 1 Photo

  • Drug dealers going corporate

    A top federal official on Tuesday said that 105 banks and credit unions are doing business with legal marijuana sellers, suggesting that federal rules giving financial institutions the go-ahead to provide services to dealers are starting to work.

    August 13, 2014

  • Lindley, Tom.jpg College sports upended by NCAA vote, judge's ruling

    Big-name conferences have leave to write their own rules, and a federal judge is forcing colleges to share television and marketing royalties with players. The guise of amateurism is gone from college athletics. What's next is anyone's guess.

    August 12, 2014 1 Photo

Twitter Updates
Facebook
Stocks