Bruce Pearl: Why His Exit Is a Bad Sign for Jim Tressel

Big House BobSenior Analyst IIMarch 21, 2011

CHARLOTTE, NC - MARCH 18:  Head coach Bruce Pearl of the Tennessee Volunteers reacts in the second half while taking on the Michigan Wolverines during the second round of the 2011 NCAA men's basketball tournament at Time Warner Cable Arena on March 18, 2011 in Charlotte, North Carolina.  (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

Let's just discuss the facts and how they are similar:

Sept 10th: Bruce Pearl admitted he lied to the NCAA about recruits being at his house for a BBQ.

Sept 13th: Ironically, Tressel signs an NCAA Document stating he did not have any prior knowledge of his players selling their gear for extra benefits. (For some reason, not a good week for high profile coaches telling the truth to the NCAA.)

March 8th, 2011: Tressel admits to lying to the NCAA and making mistakes




University or Conference Penalties


Pearl: $1.5 million fine from his salary over five years, no off campus recruiting for a year, his contract was terminated and an eight-game suspension by the SEC.

Tressel: $250,000 out of his contract, two-game suspension against two MAC Teams and his suspension has been increased three more games to five games for the 2011 season.

Pearl had some other secondary recruiting violations, and so does Tressel and staff.   Tressel also misled Ohio State investigators in December of this year about knowing who he got the tip from and if any items had been seized. 




Pearl had recruits to his house for a BBQ then lied to the NCAA about it and tried to cover it up.  The ironic bug keeps popping up as one of the BBQ recruits is Aaron Craft who now plays for Ohio State.

Tressel gets tipped off his players are selling gear by a former player in April 2010.  Tressel responds to the email but never lets anyone know about the issues.  He then signs a document from the NCAA that states he had no prior knowledge of this in September 2010.  He then misleads Ohio State investigators in December before the Sugar Bowl regarding the situation and then admits to the mistake in March of 2011.  Also, his players played the entire 2010 season and in the Sugar Bowl, when he knew they were ineligible.  A case could be made he lied at least three times. 

The NCAA is further along its investigation with Tennessee and the Volunteers are scheduled to meet with the NCAA in June.   The Notice of Allegations has yet to be sent to Ohio State, but expect similar language and allegations (don't forget Jim is now a two-time offender with a similar situation at YSU).

Pearl was fired today after getting beat by Michigan by 30 points.

Tressel remains the head coach of Ohio State because he has only lost to Michigan once in 10 years. 

That's the difference isn't it?  At some point, Ohio State will not be able to talk themselves into keeping him.  Tressel being fired or resigning is inevitable.  It has to be.