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Monday, January 22, 2007

Do other schools do this?

Eight players from the 2006 Ohio State football team, including recently declared juniors Anthony Gonzales and Antonio Pittman, will be signing selling autographs at an event in Zanesville, Ohio next Saturday.

Besides Pittman and Gonzales, the event's promoter said Antonio Smith, Roy Hall, T.J. Downing, Stan White Jr., Justin Zwick and Jay Richardson will also be signing autographs. Purchasing a $100 Super Ticket will net one autograph from each player. Pittman and Gonzales autographs will cost $20 each and other individual autographs will cost $15 each.

Now, while there's nothing technically wrong with this from an NCAA standpoint since the players are finished with their eligibility, something just doesn't feel right about it. Disagree if you want, Buck fans, but less than three weeks after the season ends, to have some promoter out there hawking autographs, makes one wonder. Did the promoter book this 1,700 seat auditorium well in advance then just hope some of these players would agree to participate once they were allowed? Or did he put all this money down the day after the BCS game on January 9th, risking what is probably a sizable investment by throwing this thing together in just a couple days?

I mean, from an NCAA standpoint, I'm assuming this guy couldn't approach the players in, say, November and say, "Gonzo, if you declare after the season, I have a sweet cash gig lined up for you," could he? The same promoter held a similar signing event last year, thus is there a - wink, wink - understanding that OSU players can do this once their eligibility ends?

The whole thing just raises a lot of questions. Most notably: who the fuck would stand in line to pay for Justin Zwick's autograph?

(HT: DW)


cvillebuck said...

I think the reason it feels wrong is because these guys are still considered, by the fans, as college athletes. Sure they'll never play college athletics again, but the only reason people want their autographs, and are willing to pay for it, is because they are (were) Ohio State football players.

To assume this event took months of preparation is a little far fetched. This could have just as easily gone down with a simple phone call last week. "Hello, Pittman? Whatcha doin' next weekend? Uh huh... uh huh hey shut up a minute. Wanna make a few grand? Cool. Meet me at such and such at 8:00am. What? Ok, fine... Zwick can come too."

Yost said...

"Ok, fine... Zwick can come too."

LOL, cville.

Lovin said...

hey go easy on zwick, he'll need the money, it's not like he's going pro or anything

TitleIX said...

I hereby rescind Yost's photoshopping privileges.....

until you can play nicely, you cannot have your toy back.

I'm sure that I speak for all of us when I say:
IIIICCCCHHHHHHH, or, in the words of my Grandmother....

surrounded in columbus said...

i agree it looks/feels funny but it's pretty common across the state.

in a lot of cases, the dates and places get set in advance, but the actual players are typically more "last minute" decisions.

see, there's almost no chance that someone (zwick?) won't come sign autographs. and i've seen tosu fans line up to get autographs from punters and kickers, second stringers, neutron man, and the guy/gal that wears the mascot costume. hell, we even have some guy who dresses up and does an impersonation of woody (not half bad either) that people hire to entertain at parties or speak at business meetings.

also, you gotta realize this gig is in zanesville- i'm going out on a limb and guessing you've never been to zanesville. take my word for it- if they announced the ushers from tosu stadium were coming to town, people would show up to see it- just for somehting to do.

this promoter had very little down side to planning this in advance w/ out player commitments.

David said...

i'm a big michigan fan so just in case some buckeye brings this up i'll do it first: michigan did almost the same thing with braylon and AC during one of our spring practices... but it was for charity since the money went to fund scholarships for UM athletes. just so everyone knows.