Former Ohio State quarterback Troy Smith, currently playing for the Omaha Nighthawks, was asked about the school’s present problems and, without mentioning specifics, confirmed that he was anything but an “individual off the reservation” during his time at the school.
Smith believes he was “a scapegoat ” when he was caught accepting benefits from a booster in 2004.
“To tell you the truth, it had nothing to do with a $500 thing between myself and a booster,” Smith said. “I took the rap for a lot of people so a lot of people wouldn’t get in trouble. But that story can’t be told unless I want to get back at a lot of people. I’m not that type of guy. Never will.”
He believes the booster culture is ubiquitous and impossible to police.
“To me, you would literally be taking away from your time in your job to police as many people as you have to police. There’s hundreds of (boosters) at all times. Even if (athletes) got paid, they would still go after it. It’s a catch 22. Damned if you do, damned if you don’t. As much as people want to paint the picture that it’s goody two shoes, it’s not. My school is underneath the microscope right now. The best way to get them out is to tell the truth.”
Keep talking, Gene. It’s getting much more believable.
[Photo via Getty]