More Ohio State

In trying to track down Ohio State's numbers, which by the way would be 1,000 times easier to do if Ohio State would release them or the B1G office would release them, we decided to see if Kevin Noon, Managing Editor & Publisher at the Ohio State Rivals site Buckeye Grove could help shed a little light on last year's numbers at year end.  Here is his play by play for the scholarship numbers from the end of last year to the addition of this year's class.

The team ended with 80 scholarship players last season... (not including the walk-ons getting the one year).

Players that left:
17 seniors (that adds Moeller back into the mix) (63)

Dionte Allen goes against the count for 1 year (64)
Longo leaves March 9th (63)
DiLillo leaves (can't date it... he had 4 years on schollie, was mutual) (62)

Seven players enroll (Cash, Shazier, Heuerman, B. Miller, T. Brown, R. Tanner, J. Hale) (69)
Jackson leaves (68)
Pryor leaves (67)
Ohio State has 15 more players enroll (D. Smith, Spencer, Vannett, Bobek, Underwood, Carter, Farris, Hayes, S. Miller, Bennett, Crowell, C. Grant, D. Grant, Gambrell, Haynes) (82)

Even if there is a question as to when Jackson and Pryor go into the count there is no way that it goes above 84.. let alone 85... Longo was gone before Spring quarter and DiLillo was out of the program after the bowl game as well... even if we do count him for winter quarter.


Here is our take on the numbers based on what Kevin has provided us,  how we look at rosters, and how we define oversigning:

(Note: the senior class listed above would have been the signing class of 2007 in which there were 15 guys signed.  3 of that 15 were no longer with the team at the start of the 2010 season: Clifford, Scott, and Pentello.  The rest are divided up into the senior and junior classes above based on redshirting.)

We start with the number 64.  That is the number listed above after the 17 seniors leave from the pool of 80 and you add the FSU transfer (80-17=63 + FSU transfer = 64).  That is the pre-NSD number, but that number does not include the departure of Dilillo who was not on the team at the end of the 2010 season despite still being on scholarship, according to Noon.  So that takes the number to 63

Prior to NSD, on January 20th, Sam Longo announced he was transferring. http://www.thebuckeyebattlecry.com/2011/01/breaking-sam-longo-to-transfer/ now the number 62 prior to NSD.

On NSD Ohio State signed 24 (23 for this class and 1 as a grayshirt signee for next year). 62+23 = 85 plus Cardale Jones who was a grayshirt signee.  Technically you could say that Ohio State went over by 1, but the 1 that they went over would not result in forcing anyone out of a scholarship because it technically doesn't count until next year.  The 1 over was clearly for next year -- how you view that is up to you, if you want to call it oversigning you can, by our definition it is, but clearly it doesn't result in anyone being pushed out.  Now had Jones announced at the end of July that he is taking a grayshirt then things would have been fishy.

Update: Cardale Jones signed a letter of intent but with the understanding that he would enroll at Fork Union in the fall and then rejoin Ohio State in January of 2012 on scholarship.  It is unclear as to when his LOI became void, but it had to in order for him to enroll at Fork Union.  This is slightly different than him enrolling at Ohio State for the fall and paying his own way.  With Jones being released from his LOI, he is allowed to be recruited by anyone and can go anywhere he wants should he decide after Fork Union that he doesn't want to go to Ohio State.


After NSD you have Jackson, Pryor, and Price leave the pool of 85 which is why you see Ohio State currently at 82 here:  http://ohiostate.rivals.com/content.asp?SID=917&CID=1176611.

This still leaves Adam Griffin.  He is included in the numbers above, but as we mentioned earlier, he was a walk-on freshman last year that was given the scholarship saved for Seantrel Henderson and when he didn't sign it went to Griffin.  From Griffin:

News of you signing with Ohio State was kind of a shock to most fans. How did the process unfold and how did the opportunity to become a Buckeye come about?  "Things unfolded pretty randomly. I called coach Tressel and asked to walk-on. Then, he called me back with a scholarship."


We don't know the details of Griffin's situation, but it is reasonable to think that he gets to remain on scholarship provided there is always room.  Now technically, by our definition of oversigning, if Ohio State were to go over by one and then release Griffin from his scholarship we would call it oversigning. 

This is as close as you will ever come to getting the numbers nailed down without having the official numbers from Ohio State.  Obviously, Nic Dilillo's status was the missing piece.  Being that he was not on the team at the end of the 2010 season and was not invited to spring ball, it is reasonable that both he and Ohio State knew that his scholarship would be filled by someone in the 2011 recruiting class and that is probably what Ohio State reported to the Big 10 office when they turned in their recruiting budget for 2011.  If Dilillo comes out and says he felt he was pushed out to make room or that he was treated unfairly, we'll certainly report it, just like the James Jackson situation, but to date there have been no reports on Dilillo to our knowledge.

Special thanks to Kevin Noon at Rivals for providing the scholarship chart and the time to bounce emails back and forth.

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  1. The 1 over was clearly for next year — how you view that is up to you, if you want to call it oversigning you can, by our definition it is

    You admit that Ohio State oversigned by 1, yet, you still have them at 0 in the oversigning cup. How do you justify this?

  2. DiLillo leaves (can’t date it… he had 4 years on schollie, was mutual)

    2008-2009 academic year, 2009-2010 academic year, 2010-2011 academic year. That’s 3 years not 4.

    Also, haven’t seen anything saying it was mutual.

    • Also, just curious, is this the same way you addressed the Goode transfre? I don’t recall such leniency, yet not only did Goode actually finish R years before his transfer, he also graduated. No such footnote given in your “March” list, yet it is given to OSU.

      • case in point:

        it is reasonable that both he and Ohio State knew that his scholarship would be filled by someone in the 2011 recruiting class and that is probably what Ohio State reported to the Big 10 office when they turned in their recruiting budget for 2011.

        Do you take this approach with Saban? Counting DiLillo would cause OSU to be oversigned, yet you allow them to “back count” his dismissal to before NSD because they knew he wouldn’t be there. Like Vesper, I haven’t seen anything that says it was mutual, in fact all I have seen on the subject hints at quite the opposite. Also, is it ok if the guy had 4 years on scholarship? You seem to be justifying it that way in the write-up, yet no mention of a degree is there – however when you look at Bama’s “March”, no such addendum is given for Goode, who not only had 4 years on scholarship, but earned his degree as well (how could this be? Why wasn’t he cut earlier to make room for some recruit?)

        If Dilillo comes out and says he felt he was pushed out to make room or that he was treated unfairly, we’ll certainly report it, just like the James Jackson situation, but to date there have been no reports on Dilillo to our knowledge.

        Lack of accusation has never stopped you before, why now?

  3. So, in reviewing the 2011 recruiting year for OSU.

    - OSU oversigns
    - OSU uses grayshirts
    - OSU asked player to transfer due to oversigning
    - OSU uses the sign and place tactic.

    Correct me if wrong, I could be missing something.

    If the list is correct, it shows four practices that this website has preached
    against on several occasions.

    • So, in review of this thread so far: am I to assume that all the posters condemn OSU for oversigning, for using grayshirts, for asking players to transfer due to oversign and especially the heinous sign and place tactic that encourages cohort upon cohort of athletes to view academic standards as a “barrier” and not as a challenge? Or in a perverse way, are posters pleased that OSU also conducts these practices since this fact provides more cover that will allow your schools to continue to conduct these practices? Or is there really no intellectual content girding these responses and it is simply “personal” and a wish to say “gotcha.”

      While writing this response — I had a few questions — what percentage of the scholarship roster of the SEC is comprised of players who joined the school after a stint at a JC or Military Academy? And how does that percentage compare with the percentage at ACC or Big Ten schools? Then, what percentage of athletes who are parked for a year at a Military Academy or JC and then accept a football or basketball scholarship to the SEC are African-American? Is the rate the same for AA players who pursue this route versus who directly enroll? I wonder if there are significantly different participation rates via the two routes for different categories of student-athletes? And if differential participation rates are the same across conferences?

      • I actually believe the SEC has a lower rate of accepting JC transfers in then many of the other conferences.

      • I can only speak for myself, but I do not condemn Ohio State for those actions. My stance all along has been that oversigning, grayshirts, and sign and place can all be used responsibly to manage rosters and account for attrition without screwing over student athletes. I like to point out when these practices are utilized by schools such as Ohio State because there has been such a concerted effort made by Josh and Texas Dawg to portray it as only taking place in the SEC. One of Texas Dawg’s most frequent arguements is that these practices must be unethical because they only happen in the South. Josh isn’t as explicit as Texas Dawg, but attempts to make the same arguement by focusing almost exclusively on the SEC while downright ignoring any potential transgressions outside of the SEC.

        As for the information that you request in your 2nd paragraph, I freely admit that the SEC signs more SA out of JUCO than the Big Ten or ACC. But if you consider this to be an evil that should be stopped, then you should be more focused on the Big East, Mountain West, Pac-12, Big 12, C-USA, Sun Belt, and WAC than the SEC.


        Don’t know about the breakdown by race. I’m sure most who go to JUCO are AA just as most who go to FBS schools to play football are AA.

        • Agreement here… I point to OSU’s oversigning transgressions for the same reasons–to point out the hypocrisy. I don’t believe that oversigning is inherently unethical. But I think that we all agreed that some aspects of roster management is unethical. James Jackson’s case is a prototypical example of what we all agreed is unethical oversigning / roster management.

      • Why the insistence on finding discrepancies between SEC and Big 10 schools and then assigning them some nefarious “meaning” to them? To paraphrase J, what the **** does this have to do with reforming college football for the good of all student athletes?

        It’s obvious that the intent of many posters on this site — a tone set by J – is to create and to sustain a PR war in which one conference is “bad” and the other conference is “always well meaning but sometimes misunderstood.”

        The Big 10 has presented plenty of opportunities over the past year for J to generate broader awareness of the tactics programs across the country use to enhance the level of talent on their roster at the expense of the kids themselves. Teams have oversigned. Kids have been “left at the altar” or “kicked to the curb,” which remains the crux of the ethical dimension to the oversigning debate. And J whiffed on every one of them.

        Don’t tell me it’s not relevant, and don’t kid yourselves that moving this debate forward requires B1G fans, Big 12 fans, and Pac-12 fans to cast a critical eye towards their own programs as well.

        Until that happens, then J’s complaints about OSU’s NCAA problems being off-topic or threads turning into a conference pissing match remain laughable. J’s clearly more interested in being an apologist for tOSU and the B1G than being an issue advocate. Watching him call out other posters for doing the exact same thing for their own schools, or using that as a pretext for shutting down comment threads….

  4. While the following is not directly related to oversigning per se, I believe it is relevant to Josh’s post since it has to do with OSU’s numbers and how they are figured. The reference I will link to is OSU’s response to the NCAA NOV, but I am only discussing section 11, and I initially found the link through Josh’s tweet so I hope this is not viewed as off-topic, etc. I bring this up not to question the honesty of OSU, but rather to show how unclear this information is, even when explicitly requested.

    Josh, as mentioned, I saw the link on your twitter account, and have seen several comments from people about how “open” the information released in the statement by OSU is. Have you read it all, and could you clear up some of this?

    The NCAA requested the following (my numbering) among others:

    1. The average number of initial and total football grants-in-aid that have been awarded during the past four academic years

    2. The number of initial and total football grants-in-aid in effect for the 2010-11 academic year and the number anticipated being in effect for the 2011-12 academic year.

    3. The identities of all football student-athletes anticipated to be on athletically related financial aid as of the first semester of the next academic year who will have four years of remaining eligibility and five years of enrollment…

    4. The average number of football student-athletes during the previous four years who have redshirted and the number who are expected to redshirt during the upcoming academic year.

    5. The number of football student-athletes in each of the previous four years who were awarded athletically related financial aid but who withdrew from the squad for reasons other than graduation or loss of eligibility

    1. They responded with the initial numbers being the number of LOIs signed, and the total being 85 (since they always fill the gaps with walk-ons). The Initials are 23, 14, 21, and 21. This is clear enough.

    2. It becomes less clear with this one, though still understandable: The initial here is 17 for 10-11, and 18 projected for 11-12. I assume the reason that the 11-12 numbers are less than the 23 signed in 2011 is because some of them enrolled early and back-counted, thus creating an imbalance in the numbers. It would be nice if the numbers worked out in line with the previous answer, but thus is my point.

    3. First off, despite the initial request of the identities of the student-athletes, no names are given (and elsewhere in the response all references to students are blacked out – reminds me of somewhere else…) but rather just the numbers. When you add up the numbers of players meeting each of the eligibility categories, you are left with 116 players on athletically related financial aid. How is this? Are there 31 players on medical hardships? Perhaps OSU has something like the Bryant scholarship afterall, I don’t know.

    4. The redshirt numbers are pretty straightforward, though that seems awfully high to me. (they’ve redshirted significantly more players over 4 years than Alabama has signed to LOIs)

    5. Here is another relevant stat, number of scholarship players to leave the program. OSU reported 1, 6, 3, and 6 players leaving over the last four years. This is something I would like to see from all schools (similar to what I tried to look at previously). OSU has some respectable numbers here, and not really out of line with what I found (5 players left the program from the 2008 signing class), but the one listed for this year seems questionable. We’ve discussed Longo, DiLillo, Pryor, and Jackson to have left this year. Which one is this year and how are the others listed as last year? I assume Pryor is this year’s and the others count against last year’s. Would that mean that each of these guys withdrew prior to the end of the spring semester? How else can this work out.

    Again, I bring this up mostly to point out that players leaving is not always an instantaneous occurance. If we just recently heard about Jackson leaving, that doesn’t mean he just left – OSU seems to say he left before the summer. If we just now hear that Goode is transfering, it doesn’t mean that he was just kicked off the team now to make room because of oversigning, it could mean that he has been working on it since before spring (and Bama oversigned partly because of it).

  5. I also like how this site complains that UA hides its records and info that Joshua and others feel should be made available to the public. That since UA or others are not transparant they are hiding something. So I guess now since ESPN is suing OSU now for violating public records law it would only lead us to the assumption that OSU has something to hide and again should not be the standard this sites likes to use to set the bar for all of CFB.


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