College Football Notebook
Published 12:00 am Wednesday, June 15, 2011
The college football notebook …
CLEVELAND ó Sharks, including a big blue one up north, are circling the troubled waters around Ohio State’s maimed and maligned football program.
As the school anxiously awaits potential NCAA sanctions and further public shame from the tattoo-for-memorabilia scandal that has already claimed coach Jim Tressel and quarterback Terrelle Pryor, schools like rival Michigan, Big Ten newcomer Nebraska, and reawakened Notre Dame could be poised to tear a few chunks off the battered Buckeyes.
Recruiting, you see, is a bloodsport all its own.
Though it’s too early to fully assess what impact Ohio State’s present problems ó and any future troubles it may face once the NCAA has its say ó will have on recruiting, it’s clear the Buckeyes could take some major hits.
They may have already.
On Friday, Tom Strobel, a 6-foot-6, 245-pound junior defensive end from Mentor, Ohio, committed to the Wolverines, who under new coach Brady Hoke figure to benefit from Ohio State’s mess more than any other school. Although Strobel said Michigan’s academics ultimately swayed him to choose the Big Blue over the Buckeyes, the team he’s cheered for since his childhood, threatening storm clouds enshrouding Columbus certainly didn’t help Ohio State’s cause.
“When I filled out Strobel’s evaluation card after talking to him, I wrote down, ’95 percent going to Ohio State,'” CBS College Sports recruiting analyst Tom Lemming said. “I thought he was a lock and I thought the Top 10 recruits in Ohio would all end up going to Ohio State.
“But now, with Tressel gone and so much uncertainty hanging over the program, I’m not so sure.”
MONTGOMERY, Ala. ó Coach Gene Chizik says in his upcoming book that Auburn would never have let Cam Newton play if the Tigers had any concerns about the quarterbackís eligibility and described a star player with high character and ěincredible focusî who used football as an escape.
ěWe knew we had done nothing wrong during the recruiting process,î Chizik wrote in ěAll In: What it Takes to Be the Best.î
ěIf weíd had any level of concern regarding Cameronís eligibility, we would not have put him on the field and risked forfeiting games for playing an ineligible player.î
PORTLAND, Ore. ó Oregon Ducks coach Chip Kelly has suspended Cliff Harris indefinitely after the cornerback was cited for speeding while driving with a suspended license.
Harris, 20, was cited Sunday morning after police said they clocked him driving at 118 mph on a suspended license in a rental car.
The car Harris was driving had been rented by a university employee.