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Posted on Thu, Mar 10, 2011 : 3:51 p.m.

Former Michigan coach Rich Rodriguez offers some support to Jim Tressel

By Staff

Amid a firestorm of criticism, Jim Tressel received some backing from one of his former rivals. Rich Rodriguez never beat Tressel during his three years as coach of the Michigan football team, but offered the embattled Ohio State coach a little support on a national radio show earlier today.

Rodriguez, while admitting he didn't know every fact behind Tressel's recent suspension and fine, told ESPN Radio's Colin Cowherd that while "there are some guys out there that bend the rules a little bit or they get around the rules and try to get a competitive advantage," he doesn't think Tressel is part of that crowd.


Former Michigan coach Rich Rodriguez, right, talks with Ohio State coach Jim Tressel before their teams' meeting at Ohio Stadium last November. file photo

"There's coaches out there that are trying to get a competitive advantage the wrong way, a handful, and they seem to get away with it," Rodriguez said. "And there are other coaches that are really trying as hard as they can, doing everything in good faith, and they seem to get nailed. I think that's the thing that frustrates coaches, like, 'Geez look at what these guys did, and they're winning and they did all that.'"

Later, Rodriguez said that while there's plenty of shady recruiting practices in college football, he never heard of any coming from the Wolverines' most bitter rival.

"In my experience in three years of recruiting against them, we didn't sense that, 'Hey, Ohio State is one of these schools that are on the edge,'" Rodriguez said. "There were others we thought were doing that."

Rodriguez wouldn't name the schools he thought were guilty of negative recruiting, but said "some of them are getting looked at right now. So that will come out here pretty soon."

Find the full audio of the interview at



Mon, Mar 14, 2011 : 5:03 a.m.

At least we can still say that football at OSU is waaay different than football at Michigan - and be very grateful.


Sun, Mar 13, 2011 : 11:32 a.m.

Rodriguez spotted the reporter approaching. So he turned to one of his personal assistants and said, "Go tackle that reporter and keep him from getting to me and forcing me to say something." His personal assistant dutifully went to execute the tackle. But he tried to do an arm tackle and missed.


Sat, Mar 12, 2011 : 11:06 p.m.

Who gives a rip about RR any longer? He just needs to GO AWAY, or better yet, AA dot com needs to stop "reporting" on his ludicrous statements in this online "newspaper." RR is history in AA, he was fired from UM, and I would guess that few people, if any, who are reading AA dot com care about what he says or thinks about anything. If other coaches like him and respect him, as cutty240 suggests, then fine. Just stop keeping his name alive in this online newspaper. Other big time coaches are not likely reading AA dot com if they are interested in keeping up with the latest antics of Rich Rodriguez.


Sat, Mar 12, 2011 : 9:05 p.m.

The coach's comments go in the category "things you shouldn't say", similar to the category "things you shouldn't write on this page".


Sat, Mar 12, 2011 : 2:13 a.m.

Rodriguez and Tressel sitting in the Tree. C-R-Y-I-N-G. First comes love. Then comes marriage then comes the NCAA. with a fine and sanctions. Sorry, I am not THEO212....


Sat, Mar 12, 2011 : 2:07 a.m.

Interesting article in an OSU student paper: <a href="" rel='nofollow'></a> Verdict: Fire the Vest

Lorain Steelmen

Fri, Mar 11, 2011 : 9:42 p.m.

PortageLkBlu....I agree that osu will have 'image' problems going forward, even IF they beat this rap. But they are not one bit different, than they were, two weeks ago, or ten years ago. The Tressel regime, has been 'dirty' since the day he walked in there. The key here is, that the good folks in Columbus, are perfectly Ok with that. As far as Tress being a liar, there is an episode, when Carr brought his 2004 team into the Shoe, and had to go through the 'search 'by drug dogs, getting off the bus. (I was down there.) It upset that team (Henne/Hart's freshman year), and they stunk up the place that day. Later when Carr cornered Tress about it, Tress lied to Carr's face, and said that osu did that all year. He never thought that Carr would have that checked out. Carr did, and it was a lie. Result...Carr had zero respect for Tress from that point on. (All other opponents that year, were checked at their motels before they left for the staduim.) As far as Rodriguez goes, he has as much to do with Michigan as Carr, Moeller, and Elliot, and befoere they died, Schemebenchler and Crisler. Some posters on here, need to get over it. He dodn't say anything that Hoke hasn't said, this week. No one at UM is going to go on record, attacking another conference coach. The league office will have to do that.


Fri, Mar 11, 2011 : 10:22 p.m.

In one capacity yes, RR was a former coach at Mich. and that will be entered in the record book but, I don't think your going to see RR keeping an office on campus in fact, I doubt your going to see much of RR around Ann Arbor and I can't guarantee he would get a very warm welcome say if, he was presented to the fans at halftime during say, homecoming. I liked the guy and I will go on record saying that, with that said, you are right he has something to do with Michigan, that's a fact.


Fri, Mar 11, 2011 : 9:02 p.m.

Very simply, I call this the &quot;two peas in a pod&quot; phenomenon.

Terry Star21

Fri, Mar 11, 2011 : 8:28 p.m.

Although I liked Rich Rod and fully supported him - there comes a time to just be quite. This is especially true regarding ones old job/settings and concentrate on ones new endeavors and life.


Fri, Mar 11, 2011 : 5 p.m.

The way I see it, pure entertainment, I couldn't have written a better script myself. Means nothing to me whatsoever. Think about it boys and girls, Rich Rodriguez has absolutely nothing to do with Michigan anymore and let me predict the future for the Michigan vs Ohio State rivalry. From this point forward Jim Tressel hence Ohio State will be the villain and Michigan will be the savior of the big ten as Michigan rebuilds into what we all think Brady Hoke will bring. As long as Jim Tressel remains at ohio state in the capacity of head coach he will be the butt of all villain jokes. Michigan fired their villain. From now on, every game ohio state wins people will say, sure they won cause they cheat.


Fri, Mar 11, 2011 : 5:54 p.m.

It wasn't like they were cheating by playing ineligible players every game they won last year, so there is no reason to think such a thing, but of course people will! Completely unfair.

Edward R Murrow's Ghost

Fri, Mar 11, 2011 : 4:29 p.m.

Ya can't make this stuff up. One cheater, albeit an amateur one, vouching for a cheater extraoridnaire. Are we certain that this isn't something that George Lucas or Gene Roddenberry dreamt up? Good Night and Good Luck


Fri, Mar 11, 2011 : 1:44 p.m.

Okay, I'm going to play doctors advocate today, eat a good breakfast and don't forget your juice, take your vitamins and for gods sake, don't forget your anxiety pills, there now isn't that better. You boys and girls have a nice day. Get over it, it's a new season, new coaches, a new stadium and the future looks bright for Michigan. I think you boys and girls need a game.


Fri, Mar 11, 2011 : 1:59 p.m.

I feel better, Portage. Thanks!


Fri, Mar 11, 2011 : 1:06 p.m.

Bill Snyder came back to coach Kansas State. Billy Martin came back multiple times to manage the Yankees. Therefore, title of this article should be &quot;FUTURE Michigan coach Rich Rodriguez offers some support to Jim Tressel.&quot; Long Coach Our King! (Let's continue to hope that Hoke and Borges don't ruin things for us). CoB!


Fri, Mar 11, 2011 : 5:43 p.m.

whatshisname..... coach or king please relent that man crush thing


Fri, Mar 11, 2011 : 5:14 p.m.

&quot;Bill Snyder came back to coach Kansas State. Billy Martin came back multiple times to manage the Yankees.&quot; And they found Nemo too in that movie ... keep living in fantasy land.

Edward R Murrow's Ghost

Fri, Mar 11, 2011 : 4:30 p.m.

Billy Martin and the Yankees. Yeah, there's a person and an organization worthy of emulation. Good Night and Good Luck

1st Down

Fri, Mar 11, 2011 : 4:43 a.m.

Enough of this RR guy ok? His comments above on Tressel being &quot;clean&quot; clearly show that he is cluess and just part of the good o' boys coaching network with the high powered agents and million dollar deals.... I dont want to see his face anymore AA! He killed Michigan football. Im not alone in my position on that guy.


Fri, Mar 11, 2011 : 5:39 a.m.

Actually, I think in clearly shows he knows enough to give a diplomatic answer when he'll be looking for work soon.

Lorain Steelmen

Fri, Mar 11, 2011 : 3:15 a.m.

Tater; I think you got it exactly right. This is just 'coach speak', and RR doesn't want to make a mistake here. His comments are fine. Having said that, RR's biggest problems came because he worked the kids 'too hard!' He had them doing calisthetics on THEIR time, rather than on the university's time. There's quite q bit of difference here, between him and Tress. I wonder if Justin Boren still thinks Tress display's superior 'family values' now. By the way, I'm hearing a buzz in the Toledo area already, about Urban Meyer, as the next osu coach. He isn't any cleaner than Tressel was....but then, that's never been a concern in Columbus!


Fri, Mar 11, 2011 : 12:52 a.m.

I see someone in editing is still stirring the pot on RR. RR gets mentioned more now than he did when he was coaching at Michigan. RR didn't &quot;offer support&quot; to Tressel; he simply used coachspeak to avoid making a controversial statement about him. There is a huge difference between the two. But it is really cute of the Michigan MSM to try and create yet more negativity around RR. I understand when ignorant fans still do this, but you would think the media would give it a rest.


Fri, Mar 11, 2011 : 12:29 a.m.

&quot;There's coaches out there that are trying to get a competitive advantage the wrong way, a handful, and they seem to get away with it,&quot; Rodriguez said. Here is a college coach (a member of the faculty), who does not know that he should say, &quot;There are coaches out there ...&quot; I am very pleased that I no longer have to wince when listening to his ungrammatical babble.


Sat, Mar 12, 2011 : 8 a.m.

Perhaps you mean: &quot;... so do 3/4 of college football players...&quot;


Fri, Mar 11, 2011 : 9:03 p.m.

RR may speak like a snapping turtle --- but so does 3/4 of college football players, so I think it's a good match.


Fri, Mar 11, 2011 : 7:50 a.m.

Hoke comes across as a football coach; he doesn't sound like an uneducated idiot.


Fri, Mar 11, 2011 : 5:37 a.m.

So you haven't heard Hoke speak, then?


Fri, Mar 11, 2011 : 12:17 a.m.

BorninA2, Thank you for nailing it down so I don't have to post that myself :) whatshisname &amp; whatshisvest'sname certainly have a bright future as co-owners of a chain of used car dealerships. Here is a photo of whatshisvest'sname in disguise and with new contact lenses and more: <a href="" rel='nofollow'></a>


Thu, Mar 10, 2011 : 11:26 p.m.

&quot;There's coaches out there that are trying to get a competitive advantage the wrong way, a handful, and they seem to get away with it,&quot; Rodriguez said. What he didn't say is that he's upset that he got caught doing just this sort of thing. And the more he can rationalize and make okay Tressel's behavior, the more he can do the same with his. They both cheated. Tressel got a paltry two-game suspension and RR got an even more pointless written reprimand.


Fri, Mar 11, 2011 : 3:44 p.m.

Playing organized sports is a whole different set of rules than what the teachers, professors and mommy and daddy taught at home. In the military in the K-9 Corps while training in the desert our dogs were issued water first then we got what was left, sometimes not much left for us. Do you think I complained about that, Never and I didn't tell my mommy that the Air Force was violating my rights. These coaches are human and I say slap them around a bit and knock them off their high horse and then get on with the game. This is not murder or rape these things are forgivable after the correct punishment. Jim Tressel is probably a decent man but he is guilty of one major crime, Jim Tressel is human.


Thu, Mar 10, 2011 : 11:36 p.m.

You never played any organized athletics in highschool? You don't remember your coach telling you about &quot;voluntary summer conditioning&quot; that you had better show up to or you weren't going to play?


Thu, Mar 10, 2011 : 11:09 p.m.

whatshisname is just trying to lobby for an OC job, just in case a D3 team doesn't pick him up as their HC.


Thu, Mar 10, 2011 : 11:22 p.m.

It's fun to bash Rich Rod, but you know very well he'll land another HC job in a BCS conference as soon as he wants to.

David Vande Bunte

Thu, Mar 10, 2011 : 10:57 p.m.

Yet another reason I am glad that Michigan fired Rich Rodriguez. Sorry Rich, but knowingly playing five ineligible players for an entire season is most definitely trying to &quot;bend the rules a little bit or they get around the rules and try to get a competitive advantage&quot;. It isn't exactly rocket science. The five players were vital to your National Championship dreams last year, so you let them play even when you knew they couldn't per NCAA rules. If you aren't smart enough to understand that doing that is trying to gain a competitive advantage, you weren't smart enough to be Michigan's coach.


Thu, Mar 10, 2011 : 11:21 p.m.

He was talking specifically about recruiting and gaining an advantage in recruiting by doing it dirty. Nothing Tressel did in this story has anything to do with recruiting.


Thu, Mar 10, 2011 : 10:41 p.m.

Wait, I'm not sure I remember this guy Rodriguez. Are they talking about the chubby kid from the show Modern Family? <a href="" rel='nofollow'></a> Well, considering he hardly knew what was going with two-thirds of his team, it is no surprise that Whathisname did not know what was going on with Ohio State. They edited it out of the article but the reason why Rodriguez did not want to name the teams he felt were cheaters was because he wil be coaching one of them next season.

Edward R Murrow's Ghost

Sat, Mar 12, 2011 : 1:27 a.m.

Yes, Dusty. How many Super Bowl winning teams has he been on? ZERO. Controversies and team-dividing behaviors? <a href="" rel='nofollow'></a> You remind me of Buggs Bunny's favorite saying about a color of deep red, Dusty. Good Night and Good Luck


Sat, Mar 12, 2011 : 12:56 a.m.

I've known for a long time that you have no clue what you're saying most of the time, Edward, but &quot;just as is the case with TO, whatshisname's track record here ought suggest that they will be buying fool's gold&quot;? TO has been one of the most productive receivers in the history of the NFL.

Edward R Murrow's Ghost

Fri, Mar 11, 2011 : 4:36 p.m.

Just like there have always been NFL teams willing to take on the poisonous and destructive Terrell Owens, there will be college football programs who will hire whatshisname. Of course, just as is the case with TO, whatshisname's track record here ought suggest that they will be buying fool's gold. But, as P.T. Barnum is alleged to have said, &quot;There's a sucker born every minute.&quot; The MCC are living proof of that aphorism. Good Night and Good Luck


Thu, Mar 10, 2011 : 10:49 p.m.

Maybe, Dusty, just maybe.


Thu, Mar 10, 2011 : 10:44 p.m.

So you're saying you think Rich Rod will replace a cheating coach somewhere?


Thu, Mar 10, 2011 : 10:04 p.m.

Mabe Rich Rod will step in and fill the void for Tressel durning his 2 game vacation.


Thu, Mar 10, 2011 : 10:01 p.m.

Rich may not be respected in Ann-Arbor,and thats ok.But alot of coaches,Big Time Coaches like and respect him.Remember the world doesn't ask Ann-Arbor what it thinks.


Fri, Mar 11, 2011 : 4:59 p.m.

The question begs to be asked, &quot;Why fine Jim Tressel?&quot; I mean, really, what did he do? He was not lying to keep his star players on the field, he was protecting, for lack of a better word, his sons! I'm tearing up...fine Tressel? No, no, no. If anything he should be fining us!


Fri, Mar 11, 2011 : 4:52 p.m.

I couldn't agree with you more, Portage. Their work with Maurice Clarett and Adam &quot;Pac-Man&quot; Jones really exemplifies this &quot;good work.&quot; Worth every million, these two coaches. Taking responsibility for their actions and all, they have the pristine morals of a hedge fund manager, and they don't make half as much! Bless their hearts!


Fri, Mar 11, 2011 : 3:57 p.m.

Cutty you are right. Most people in this world don't even know what a Wolverine is. If you ask many children which would you rather have a piece of bread and dirty water or a national champ. for Michigan most kids will, well I think you, &quot;Educated&quot; folks know the answer to that. Rich Rodriguez and Jim Tressel have probably done more good in this world and less bad than all of us put together and all you boys and girls can come up with is, &quot;Fire Them&quot;.


Fri, Mar 11, 2011 : 3:13 a.m. that's a fun way to spell it.


Thu, Mar 10, 2011 : 10:25 p.m.

I'm confident I speak for the entire Ann Arbor community when I say thank you, cutty, for your humbling perspective. We are better because of it. Again, thank you.


Thu, Mar 10, 2011 : 9:45 p.m.

Yes, I understand that Sweatervest publicly supported Rodriguez and could have run up the score even more a few times against him/us. But, I REALLY wish in general, coaches wouldn't blindly support other coaches simply because they're all &quot;in the fraternity&quot;. Without knowing all the facts, it would be best to just keep silent. It doesn't do anything for the coach making the comments either - other than make you wonder &quot;why did they say that&quot;?


Thu, Mar 10, 2011 : 10:16 p.m.

Where do you get the impression that RR &quot;blindly supports&quot; the vest? He simply stated that in 3 years of recruiting against OSU, he didn't get the impression they were one of the programs who recruited dirty. RR has been a vocal opponent of oversigning and cutting... errrrr... giving medical hardships, and I wouldn't doubt if he's talking about Saban and Miles and other coaches in the SEC who sign 30 players a year then miraculously have exactly 85 scholorship players on game day.