On a phenomenal “you’re not helping” moment a fresh out of jail Maurice Clarett has stepped up to defend the Ohio State University football program on the Dan Patrick show. Clarett made it very clear only players should be blamed for violations:
There’s no secret regime, there’s no secret congregation of people who sit around at Ohio State who gives young guys money. Anything that any player goes and gets is all based on him and who he meets in the community. The coaches and the university have no control over what the young guy’s doing.
Clarett made it clear he was to blame for his own violations during his short time in Columbus:
People didn’t reach out to me. I reached out to people. Just when you’re traveling around the community, I reached out to people: ‘Hey, I’m struggling with this. Hey, I need help with this.’
But not to worry, Clarett immediately made it clear that while he explicitly broke the rules he was just fighting against the college football machine:
Why are they even in that position? Why is it that a university can profit $20 million, $30 million, $40 million and these guys are in the position that they have to sell their memorabilia — the only thing they have of value at that point? Why are they even in that position to do that, when there’s enough money to go around?
The irony is that no one is saying (yet) that the Ohio State athletic department actively pushed benefits on their athletes. What is being said, that Clarett’s comments seem to confirm, is that numerous OSU football players were getting extra benefits from boosters and the OSU staff turned a blind eye.
Normally a disgraced ex-con guilty of exactly the crimes you are being accused of makes a great spokesman but just this once OSU may want to look for someone else to put behind the mike.