Clarett#039;s father confirms 6-game suspension

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, August 26, 2003

ARLINGTON, Va. -- Ohio State star Maurice Clarett's father told USA Today the school plans to inform the NCAA that it will suspend the running back for six games.

''It will be a total of six games, but he could've lost everything,'' Myke Clarett said Sunday. ''We're relieved that it's finally over and that he was able to maintain his college eligibility and his scholarship. That was the goal.''

Myke Clarett said a source on the university's board of trustees told him his son would miss three games for violating NCAA rules for driving a borrowed car from a dealership and three more for academic reasons.

Email newsletter signup

In announcing the suspension Friday, the school said the running back would sit out ''multiple games'' for his role in an exaggerated car theft report.

Ohio State also said the suspension was only for nonacademic allegations, and that a 10-person university panel probing charges of academic fraud is a completely separate investigation from the one that led to the suspension Friday.

Coach Jim Tressel and athletic director Andy Geiger have declined to be specific about the length of the suspension, and allowed the player to return to practice Sunday. He was held out of the first 23 preseason practices because of eligibility questions.

Telephone messages were left by The Associated Press seeking comment Sunday at the Youngstown, Ohio, home of Clarett's mother and the office of his Columbus attorney, Scott Schiff.

Myke Clarett, who was divorced from the player's mother when Maurice was a toddler, also said his son plans to leave school after his junior season.

''Enough's enough. Who needs it?'' Myke Clarett said. ''He can do the same thing in the NFL -- get the cars -- and it's legal.''

The running back set an Ohio State freshman rushing record last season with 1,237 yards and scored the winning touchdown in the Fiesta Bowl against Miami, giving the Buckeyes their first national championship in 34 years.

The second-ranked Buckeyes will begin their title defense at home Saturday against No. 17 Washington.