By Anthony Caruso III
The South Carolina Gamecocks coaching staff have reportedly been informed that a coaching hire is close. They’ve also been told to stop recruiting so that the new head coach can use the scholarships on players.
It doesn’t appear like interim head coach Shawn Elliott will be getting the job. He took over the job after long-time head ball coach Steve Spurrier resigned – and not retired – after he saw the team struggling and didn’t want to hurt the recruiting anymore.
One of the names being mentioned is former football coach Jim Tressel. The current Youngstown State President’s new employer would have to show-cause to hire him.
Tressel’s show-cause penalty expires on December 19th, 2016. However, any team may hire him will have to show the NCAA that they shouldn’t be sanctioned from hiring him.
At the new school, if it is the Gamecocks, would have to put some kind of policies in the place to make sure that he doesn’t make further violations during his tenure.
Tressel, if he does coach again, he’ll be suspended for the first five games of the season in addition to any conference championship or bowl game should he be hired before the 2016 date.
Tressel, who saw that the Ohio State Buckeyes get penalized on December 20th, 2011, including a one-year probation and postseason ban under his watch, was the third-winningest coach at the school, behind Woody Hayes and John Cooper, before the violations came about.
In July 2011, the school vacated the wins from the 2010 season, which Tressel coached. Luke Fickell, the previous defensive coordinator and assistant head coach, served as the head coach for the 2011 season.
This whole situation began when the school notified the Department of Justice in December 2010 that sports memorabilia was seized from the Edward Rife’s tattoo parlor. Tresses denied any knowledge of the violations after being questions on December 16th of illegal selling of rings, jerseys, and football memorabilia to Rife.
Initially, he was suspended the first five-games of the 2011 season, along with several players in March 2011. A month later, former President Gordon Gee said that Tressel would not lose his job, but the NCAA accused Tressel of withholding information and lying to keep his players on the field.
He resigned as the Buckeyes head coach on May 30th, 2011. His resignation came three days after a Sports Illustrated report came out that found evidence that the memorabilia-for-tattoos scandal went back to the 2002 national championship season, and reportedly included 28 players over that time.
As a college football coach, Tressel was 229-79-2 overall between his tenure at Youngstown State and Ohio State. He helped the Penguins to four National Championships (1991, 1993-1994, 1997), and the aforementioned 2002 national championship over the Miami (Fla.) Hurricanes with the Buckeyes.
He also won 12 Coach of the Year Awards. He was the Youngstown State head coach from 1986 through 2000. Then, took over the Buckeyes coaching job from 2001 through 2010.
Current Houston Cougars head coach Tom Herman was the leading candidate for the position before this new report yesterday. With Herman’s Cougars 10-0, after a nail-biter with the Memphis Tigers last night, his name is going to be a hot commodity this winter.
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