Over four months after appearing in front of the NCAA’s Committee on Infractions, Ohio State will learn how big of a hammer the NCAA will lay down on its football program.
According to the Associated Press, OSU athletic director Gene Smith confirmed that the NCAA’s COI will hand down its final sanctions at 3 p.m. ET. A release from the school/governing body of collegiate athletics is expected at some point after that.
The sanctions will stem from impermissible benefits received by football players and ultimately led to the firing/resignation/retirement of head coach Jim Tressel. After appearing in front of the COI Aug. 12, the school’s compliance department also discovered players were given cash by a now-former booster at a charity event as well as being overpaid by the same booster who provided the players jobs.
OSU has already self-imposed several sanctions, including vacating all of the wins from the 2010 season; stripping itself of five scholarships total over a three-year period; returning BcS bowl money received following the ’10 season; and probation. The NCAA can either accept the self-imposed sanctions and add to them.
The fact that the NCAA also levied a failure-to-monitor charge on the university has led some to believe that the NCAA will slap the football program even harder. Others insist the fact that Urban Meyer agreed to take over as head coach was a sign that there aren’t likely to be many if any additional sanctions imposed.
Tressel, incidentally, fully expects to receive a multi-year show-cause penalty from the NCAA for his decision to lie and coverup the initial information he received on potential violations committed by at least two of his players. Such a penalty would effectively end The Vest’s collegiate coaching career, at least for the foreseeable future.