Jan 21, 2010, 6:30 PM EDT
So today we return to Mississippi State, where the university issued an email statement today confirming claims that a group of of their high school football recruits dropped by a local strip club during their recent official recruiting visit. (Well, the mall was closed). Actually, the email from athletic director Greg Byrne termed it thusly:
A very limited number of football student-athletes and prospective student-athletes visited an establishment deemed impermissible by our recruiting rules and regulations.
I don’t think he was referring to a bowling excursion at Bulldog Lanes.
The story broke last week when Internet rumors began circulating that three MSU recruits, Jay Hughes, Jameon Lewis and Robert “Firebird” Johnson, had visited a strip club called the Pony, about 10 miles from the MSU campus. A writer for the blog Mr. SEC then dug up screen shots of the players’ Facebook accounts, where they had bragged in separate posts about visiting the club (“POOONNNYYYYY!”). And so we apparently had our first big social networking failscapade of the new year.
Two of the players, Lewis and Johnson, subsequently denied ever being at the club, Lewis telling a local newspaper that the posts were “just a joke.” Well, not so much it seems. MSU officials said on Wednesday that they were looking into the matter, and today apparently confirmed that not only were the three high school recruits in question there, but that they were joined by current Bulldog football players. So you went to a strip club and then lied about it. Classy.
Byrne’s statement here.
It’s not clear at this point whether any NCAA rules were broken, or if the school is going to take further action. In his letter, Byrne said that the “breach of policy was isolated” and that it won’t jeopardize the eligibility of the players or recruits. Lewis, Johnson and Hughes, in fact, were not specifically named by the AD. All involved, one assumes, were over 18. But what a sleazy development; that Bulldog pictured above should be reworked to show him carrying a stripper pole with several dollar bills protruding from his pockets. Nicely done, Dan Mullen. Is Otter from Animal House in charge of recruiting?
New MSU football motto: “I don’t think I should be alone right now. And, can you get three dates for my friends?”
State says recruits, current athletes visited “impermissible” establishment [Clarion-Ledger]
Thursdays with Greg Byrne [MStateAthletics]
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