OSU president Gee: University reviewing compliance

By Rusty Miller

Associated Press

Published: Monday, June 6 2011 1:50 p.m. MDT

COLUMBUS, Ohio — Ohio State University must "scrub everything" as it works to restore order after the resignation of Jim Tressel, OSU president Gordon Gee said Monday, one week after the football coach's stunning departure.

Gee told The Associated Press in a phone interview that university trustees are looking at compliance issues across the university, not just in the athletic department.

"Any time that there is a mistake, or any time that there is an issue that flares up, and we go back through and scrub everything very, very carefully," he said. "We want to make certain that we're asking all the right questions."

Tressel resigned on Memorial Day following revelations that he failed to report allegations that several players had sold or traded memorabilia for cash and tattoos. The NCAA continues to investigate Ohio State's football program, particularly in regard to improper benefits and cars.

Gee said his biggest concern a week after Tressel's resignation is making sure the university looks at mistakes it made and corrects them.

"Make certain the procedures we have are best in class, and we are monitoring every one of those issues very, very carefully," Gee said. "We're going to make certain that we set a very high standard for ourselves."

And Ohio State athletic director Gene Smith will be a part of that. Gee again insisted that Smith's job is safe.

"In tumultuous times it's important to have a very mature leader," Gee said. "He is that."

Also Monday, Ohio State released copies of emails and letters Gee has received since a March 8 news conference with Tressel and Smith in which the school acknowledged that Tressel had known about the memorabilia sales for months without alerting the university.

Gee has been criticized for his response when he was asked then whether he had considered firing Tressel: "I'm just hopeful the coach doesn't dismiss me."

"I found your comments to be both flippant and arrogant," Harry Turner, of LaCrosse, Wis., wrote on March 14. "Basically, you, Mr. Smith and Coach Tressel have sent a negative message to American's youth -- 'It's ok to win by cheating.'"

Andrew Welsh-Huggins can be reached at http://twitter.com/awhcolumbus.

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