Once again we find ourselves in the middle of the week, eagerly making weekend plans and lamenting that we are still 70+ days away from football season’s kickoff. That doesn’t mean that the largest athletic department in the country was devoid of news. Quite the contrary, actually. We’ll talk lawsuits, important plays, and the newest blog on the block.
I guess this is as good as any spot for my official introduction. Many of you already know me from my extensive work as a quasi-clandestine male model. What you were unaware of is that I also hold three PhDs from Harvard, Yale, and North Dakota State in Humanities, Romance Languages, and Applied Quantum Physics, respectively. In all seriousness though, I’m pretty awesome, and modest to boot. To the four readers following me from UnScripted Ohio, I say thank you and hope that you enjoy the ride.
That said, Ring The Damn Bell.
ESPN is largely without merit
I think we can all agree on the above statement and that it applies to most all things ESPN. Whether it be the daily exercise in vocal volume control failure on First Take, the hilarity of one Tony Kornheiser (see below), or the laughable way in which their “ombudsman” has handled the Craig James affair, we can all agree that ESPN has largely swayed from their original purpose and has swerved into the absurd and hilarious. Of course, our opinions on the WWL only matter to advertisers.
Except when ESPN tries to throw their weight around in the courtroom.
As many of you are no doubt aware, the Supreme Court of Ohio issued their final decision in ESPN’s lawsuit against Ohio State with regards to the documentation they requested on former Quarterback Terrelle Pryor and his mentor, Ted Sarniak. The Supreme Court sided with tOSU on most points, agreeing that the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) covered most of the documents that ESPN requested and Ohio State declined to provide.
The victory was a little hollow, as the court still ordered the University to turn over the remainder of the documents, after the pertinent information has been redacted to comply with FERPA. This is a small victory for the four letter network, but it has to sting after the panel of esteemed Judges told ESPN that their claims were “largely without merit.” This is the legal equivalent of telling ESPN that their arguments were bad and they should feel bad for making them.
The real kickers, however, were the farcical way in which ESPN’s lawyers chose to file their suit. In at least two counts, they make no plea for relief, so even though the court ruled in their favor, there was nothing to award ESPN other than the knowledge that they got the court to admit that Ohio State was being very, very bad. Add in that ESPN’s legal counsel tried to curry favor with the court by citing one of the court’s own decisions. One problem. That decision was, at the time of filing, largely outdated, having been clarified by the District Court. Now, I’m no lawyer, but that right there is funny.
As for our response, I’ll let Ryan from the Dark Side present it, because he does it better than I could imagine.
Punters have to eat too
Jim Tressel is famous for calling the punt “the most important play in football.” When I talked to Jon Thoma about the subject, he made the statement make so much more sense to me. Which made me understand that much more why Ohio State would extend a scholarship offer to a Punter when it seems like everyone else opts for a preferred walk-on for the special teams positions.
However, when the guy you are targeting is a two sport star, can play ironman football, and is from Florida, you can’t let that guy walk on to Alabama. Saban might try to turn him into a placekicker because Lord knows he needs one. Badly. So Urban went out and offered Johnny Townsend from Orlando, FL. Townsend, a 2013 commit, has stated that Meyer told him he will start day one. This makes a ton of sense. Ben Buchanan, last year’s Team MVP, will be gone after 2012. Rather than let a guy like Frank Epitropolous take snaps at Punter, Meyer identified and obtained the guy he wanted.
Urban is no stranger to the concept of the punt. It’s why he chooses to coach Special Teams personally. For Townsend to have such high praise for the coach is a testament in and of itself. Highlight video is below. Just don’t pull a Hagerup.
ESPN launches BuckeyeNation
I won’t get into the conspiracy theories about why ESPN chose this day of all days to launch BuckeyeNation, the newest “blog” on ESPN. Apparently Rittenberg and Bennett aren’t doing enough, so ESPN hired three people with tenuous ties to Ohio to write articles you need a subscription to read. This must put ESPN in a hard spot. The amount of negative attention they levied upon Ohio State during the TatGate scandal was unmatched, even by George Dohrmann. Now they have to play nice with the fanbase if they want this new endeavor to succeed. Pardon my disbelief, but I just don’t think that an Empire as large as Ohio State has that short of a memory, ESPN.
Also, I need an Insider subscription to read most of the articles? Are you TRYING to fail miserably from the get go? Every single article you posted behind your paywall was already written and posted on a free site by better writers with closer ties to Ohio State than your motley crew. Lrn2Blog, ESPN.
I do appreciate the almost instantaneous trollery that happened, however. Kudos to you sir and/or madam.
Little known fact: Each time you tweet/email/text a recruit, Brady Hoke eats a kitten. You really want that on your conscience?