For those of you with lives and more important things to do than sit around watching SportsCenter and reading The Sporting News online all day, you’ve missed a helluva news story coming out of Stillwater. Sports Illustrated have been running a five part series on allege misconduct at Oklahoma State that, if proven true, will at minimum result in the loss of scholarships and up to several years of bowl bans. It’s not something the school is taking lightly. How it breaks down:
Money: Sports Illustrated did a lot of footwork to put this story together, and interviewed eight former Oklahoma State players confessed to having received money under the table during their time on campus. The money came from not only boosters but also staff members via payments and no-show jobs. 29 other players were fingered as well as having taken green in exchange for wearing orange.
Academics: SI was able to get 12 former players on record regarding academic misconduct. 16 other players were named. The improprieties occurred between 2000 and 2011, and the majority of issues appeared to crop up in the first half of the decade. Allegations included having schoolwork performed for players, professors giving unearned grades to keep players eligible, and clustering players in online courses that were easier to pass, easier to cheat in, and didn’t require attendance.
Drug Usage: Speaking of green, apparently there was quit a bit, and in multiple forms. Greenbacks flowed not only from the boosters mentioned above, but the drug running and dealing players on the team were dealing. Then, there was the widespread marijuana smoking before games and wild parties. Now, anyone surprised that players were toking up either didn’t go to college or remained willfully ignorant during their time there. This isn’t a forum to discuss the merits of current drug law or acceptability of substance abuse, but several college kids would fail a drug test and college football players are no different. The bigger problem lies in the allegation that usage and dealing was ignored among elite players while negligible ones were punished. Cherry picking enforcement is almost worse then turning a blind eye.
Sex: Oh yeah – college kids are having sex to. Not all of them, but particularly if you’re a football player and your options are wide, it’s happening. The question is, can you get girls whenever you want? That’s the implication Les Miles attempted to implant in recruits when they visited (allegedly, of course). When Miles was in charge of the team, the football program’s hostess group “Orange Pride” tripled its membership. The girls would sleep with recruits to encourage their decision to choose Oklahoma State.