Sunday, March 13, 2011

Jim Tressel - I'd hate to be your compliance officer

If you are OSU's general counsel or compliance officer, are you getting love letters or hate mailOhio State University football head coach Jim Tressel did not himself commit a direct violation of NAIC standards, but he has hurt his institution by putting his head in the sand.  When he heard that some of his players were selling autographed program gear to a local tattoo shop for money and tattoos, he did . . . nothing!

Tressel has had a fine reputation for being an ethical coach in an industry with so much pressure to succeed that many succumb to sharp business practices.  If ethics is doing the right thing when no one is looking, is Tressel's integrity in issue or just his judgment?  Do you criticize OSU for overreacting . . . or for not putting Tressel on permanent suspension, or do you give OSU kudos for imposing a two-game suspension and a $250,000 fine?

Here are a few thoughts on the subject from others:
  • "HR pros know better than anyone.  Where there's smoke, there's usually fire.  You have to walk down the hall and confront.  You have to get in front of the issue."  Jim Tressel Would Make a Crappy HR Director.
  • "The problem "with choosing a coach who’s been caught with his hand in the cookie jar as your ethical poster boy."  The problem with compartmentalizing ethics.
  • "[A]t a time when there is still considerable outrage — although not many criminal indictments — about the misdeeds of bankers, mortgage lenders, business executives, government officials and other miscreants, shouldn’t high-visibility and highly paid coaches of public and taxpayer supported universities be held to a high standard of ethical conduct?"  Jim Tressel, Ohio State and Ethical Standards.
This summary was prepared by Perry Cone and is posted at

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