August 16, 2014

Ohio State President E. Gordon Gee to retire July 1

A week after his comments about Notre Dame, the SEC and the Catholic religion went public, Ohio State President E. Gordon Gee announced today his intention to retire effective July 1, 2013.  The two-time Ohio State president made his announcement this afternoon in an email to students, faculty and staff. The Columbus Dispatch broke the story.

“Without question, the university has achieved remarkable success, and it has been my honor and calling to lead it,” Gee’s email says. “Ohio State is well-positioned for the future. I love this university, and my relationship with it will continue.”

Gee met with the Trustee board after he made the remarks in December, but there was no real action taken. Since the comments came to light late last week, the board met again with Gee on Monday.

It wouldn’t be a stretch to think that the University was ready to hand down a stiff penalty on the President if he decided to stay on. For the record, Gee stated that his decision to retire was after a vacation.

“I recently returned from a vacation with my family, during which time I had a chance to consider the university’s phenomenal achievements and the road that lies ahead for it. During my days away, I also spent some time in self-reflection. And after much deliberation, I have decided it is now time for me to turn over the reigns of leadership to allow the seeds that we have planted to grow. It is also time for me to reenergize and refocus myself.”

[Related: Gee could be fired with one more slip up]

Scott Raab on the 2013 NBA playoffs, Roy Hibbert fine, Jim Brown, Gordon Gee – WFNY Podcast – 2013-06-03

WFNY Podcast LogoWent a little long this week, so you’ll want to split it up if that’s your deal. Apologies, but I didn’t feel like cutting it up. All killer no filler, just the same.

  • Roy Hibbert saying “No Homo” and getting fined

  • Dave Zirin at The Nation and his thoughts on Hibbert

  • Hate speech and whether or not Hibbert hates anyone

  • The news covering the word without telling us what people said

  • Am I allowed to use the word “pansy?”

  • I’m back in the NBA and watching the playoffs

  • Doc Gooden getting squeezed and not being able to scream until I’m hoarse

  • The Indians get rained out and hell comes down on them

  • The Indians apologizing for the rain out

  • Stand-up comedians and whether they ever have to apologize

  • Tracy Morgan is crazy and anyone who gets crazy deserves it

  • Free speech and the first amendment and whether or not people should stand up

  • Don Draper hitting a hash hookah and why we can’t be more consistent

  • Opie and Anthony’s stance on apologies and how they never mean them

  • Parsing the difference between Camel advertising to kids and SNL making jokes

  • Jim Brown and whether or not he needs to be around anymore

  • Ozzie Awesome on the Muni Stadium scoreboard

  • LeBron opting out and joining the team

  • Cleveland losing ownership of its rockstars, Scott Weiland, Trent Reznor

  • Sports is the last nationally identifying factor for Cleveland

  • Gordon Gee and whether he’s allowed to tell a joke or not

  • Gee is a symptom, not a disease

  • Flame wars on Twitter [Read more...]

Ohio State: E. Gordon Gee could be fired with one more slip-up

Ohio State president E. Gordon Gee could be relieved of his duties in the event he has one more verbal faux pas. Colin Binkley from the Columbus Dispatch reports that Gee was addressed by the University’s board of trustees following the news surrounding his attempt at humor at the expense of Notre Dame University and the Catholic church.

“On occasion your words that may be intended to bring a bit of levity to some significant issue have, in fact, had the opposite effect,” says the letter.

Signed by Board Chairman Robert H. Schottenstein and Trustee Alex Shumate, the letter addressed to Gee manates that inappropriate comments must stop in the event he wants to maintain his position within the university. “Although none of us expects this to be the case, should future instances take place, they could constitute cause for even more punitive action, including dismissal, and the board will have no choice but to take such action.”

Earlier this week, it was made public that Gee referred to Notre Dame as “those damn Catholics” in reference to potentially adding the highly regarded university to The Big Ten. The Ohio State president apologized for his remarks and stated that they were an attempt at humor given the audience on the receiving end of his statements. The recent comments were merely the latest in a string of verbal gaffes from the mouth of Gee.

In November 2010, Gee boasted that Ohio State’s football schedule didn’t include teams on par with the “Little Sisters of the Poor,” a remark that forced the President to apologize verbally and in the form of a personal check. In 2012, Gee apologized for comparing the problem of coordinating the school’s many divisions to the Polish army, an off-the-cuff remark that a Polish-American group called a “slanderous” display of bigotry and ignorance.

Per the letter, Gee is to hire a “coach” to work on his “global presence and voice,” and to consult professionals who could “revisit” his statements and show how they can be better aligned with the university’s values. The trustees have also asked the president that he be more selective in his speaking engagements.

[Related: Ohio State looking to add 2,500 more seats to “The Shoe”]

Ohio State President Gordon Gee on the apology trail once again

In a report obtained by the Associated Press, Ohio State President E. Gordon Gee is undergoing a “remediation plan” for remarks he made with regard to Notre Dame University and the Catholic church.

In a meeting he attended last year, Gee reportedly stated that Notre Dame was not invited to join the Big Ten due to priests not being good partners and that “those damn Catholics” cannot be trusted.

“The fathers are holy on Sunday, and they’re holy hell on the rest of the week,” Gee reportedly said to laughter at the Dec. 5 meeting which was allegedly also attended by Ohio State Athletic Director Gene Smith.”You just can’t trust those damn Catholics on a Thursday or a Friday, and so, literally, I can say that,” said Gee, a Mormon.

Gee, who has been the subject of much scrutiny over past remarks, particularly about former head coach Jim Tressel, has since backtracked on his statements, saying that his attempt at a joke fell very, very flat.

“The comments I made were just plain wrong, and in no way do they reflect what the university stands for,” he said. “They were a poor attempt at humor and entirely inappropriate.”

In November 2010, Gee boasted that Ohio State’s football schedule didn’t include teams on par with the “Little Sisters of the Poor,” a remark that forced the President to apologize verbally and in the form of a personal check. In 2012, Gee apologized for comparing the problem of coordinating the school’s many divisions to the Polish army, an off-the-cuff remark that a Polish-American group called a “slanderous” display of bigotry and ignorance.

In 2009, Gee donated his $200,531 bonus to the E. Gordon Gee Ohio State Scholarship fund, to which he pledged $1 million earlier in the year. Furthermore, Gee gave his $20,053 raise to the Students First, Students Now scholarship fund. Gee, named Time’s best college Preisident in the country in 2009, is presently in charge of a $2.5 billion fundraising campaign for the university. 

[Related: Cleveland Sports bits and pieces]


Gordon Gee: Big Ten expansion talks ongoing

The Columbus Dispatch is reporting Ohio State president E. Gordon Gee told the university’s Athletic Council last December that talks regarding the Big Ten’s further expansion were “ongoing”. On the heels of adding Nebraska, Maryland, and Rutgers it appears the Big Ten is not quite done expanding.

Gee “believes there is movement towards three or four super conferences that are made up of 16-20 teams.” After Maryland and Rutgers officially become members the conference will be at 14 teams.

The Ohio State president did not name specific schools that the conference was targeting, but said “there are opportunities to move further south in the East and possibly a couple of Midwest universities.”

Report: Ohio State’s Gee’s Expenses in the Millions

Ohio State president Gordon Gee is not only the highest-paid president president of a domestic, public university, but his expenses reportedly total just as much as his $8.6 million in salary.

The Dayton Daily News reports that The Ohio State University has allocated roughly $7.7 million for Gee “to travel the globe, throw parties, wine and dine donors, woo prospective faculty, hang out with students and staff and maintain a 9,600-square-foot mansion on 1.3 acres.”  The report adds that the university spends “tens of thousands” of dollars alone branding the University’s president via his bow tie. Since 2007, Ohio State has spent more than $64,000 on bow ties, bow tie cookies and O-H and bow tie pins for Gee and others to distribute.

Gee’s discretionary spending — a category that allegedly includes everything from foreign trips to tailgates before home football games — has far surpassed that of both William Kirwan and Holbrook, his predecessors. Under Gee, discretionary spending leapt a reported 68.5 percent over what Holbrook had been averaging during her five-year tenure.

Per the Daily News, Gee did not make himself available for an interview.

[Related: OSU Week 4: Are the Buckeyes Really the Best Team in the Big Ten?]

Gordon Gee Says NCAA Investigation is Complete

One of the strangest parts about the events of the last few weeks with Jim Tressel and Terrelle Pryor is that neither one will actually be around for the NCAA ruling.  It still seems backwards to me that media scrutiny over a set of rules that are stricter than the criminal laws in the state and nation could yield more change than the organization itself.  But so it goes.

ESPN’s report from Gordon Gee indicates that the NCAA has completed its investigation and left campus.  In the report he also indicated that despite his resignation Jim Tressel will not be able to skirt that little issue of the quarter of a million dollars that he was fined by the university before he tendered his resignation. [Read more...]

SI: Ohio State Scandal Dates Back to 2002, Involves At Least 28 Players

After hours of speculation and boundless conjecture, Sports Illustrated has lifted the embargo on the much-discussed report penned by Pulitzer Prize-winning writer George Dohrmann. With the curtain now lifted, we receive a report that the Ohio State “memorabilia for tattoos” incident that has been well-documented stretches back to 2002 and has involved at least 28 players.

Ohio State’s head football coach Jim Tressel submitted his resignation early Monday morning ahead of the Dohrmann “special” report which discusses an entire history of issues surrounding the various programs led by the now-former play-caller.

It was earlier this week that former Ohio State wide receiver, return specialist, and all-around failure Ray Small went public with a dissertation that painted all Buckeye football brethren with a scarlet letter – pun fully intended.  In the wake of said interview, several former Buckeye football players have come out in defense of the program[Read more...]

Jim Tressel Resigns at Ohio State

The Columbus Dispatch is reporting that Jim Tressel has resigned as the head football coach at Ohio State.  The Dispatch is reporting that it was a situation where the University forced or encouraged the resignation, after scandalous headlines continued to pile up.  Luke Fickell, who was named interim coach for the first five games of the 2011 season while Tressel served a suspension, will now serve as interim coach for the duration of next year.

The Dispatch also obtained a memo school President Gordon Gee sent to OSU trustees:

[Read more...]

Bob Knight and Rich Rodriguez Support Jim Tressel

Whether it means anything or not, Jim Tressel has at least cemented his reputation enough with a couple peers enough that they were willing to speak out on his behalf.  On ESPN radio, both Bob Knight and former Michigan coach Rich Rodriguez have had supportive words for Jim Tressel.

Speaking to Mike and Mike, Bob Knight said the following.

“There is no coach in college sports that’s a better example, in my mind, of what coaching is all about and what it should be and how things should be done than Jimmy Tressel. He has done a great job at Ohio State, not because he’s won a lot of games, but because he has won a lot of games doing things the absolute right way. And I think that he would be at the top of the heap when it came to picking guys that did things the way they were supposed to be done. There isn’t anybody who is better in that regard than Jim Tressel is.” [Read more...]

The Gee Comment…No, I’m Not Talkin’ Alonzo

I’m sure Ohio State University President Gordon Gee is a brilliant man. You don’t become the President of a major University without brain power. But even the smartest people can say the dumbest things sometimes.

When asked if he considered firing Football Coach Jim Tressel in the wake of the Tattoo-gate cover up scandal, Gee responded rather flippantly.

“No,” Gee said. “Are you kidding me? … I’m just hoping the coach doesn’t dismiss me.”

Now is it not the time for jokes, bow tie*. This isn’t a Comedy Central Roast. This is a cover up orchestrated by your once bulletproof coach that has given your University a big black eye. It was bad enough when the players were caught, it became worse when the Head Coach lied to the NCAA about his knowledge of the situation. The email trail proved he was aware of what was going on, and buried it to keep five of his better players eligible.

Yet, at a time when the NCAA is now looking at the University’s flagship program under a microscope, Gee makes an ill-timed joke making light of the situation. [Read more...]