Ohio State quarterback Terrelle Pryor has parted ways with the Buckeye’s, reports Doug Lesmerises of the Cleveland Plain Dealer.
It follows an off season of drama in Columbus with a NCAA investigation, the resignation of Jim Tressell and chaos surrounding the organisation. Pryor was due to miss the first five games of the 2011 season along with several other teammates as a sanction for selling memorabilia. Most recently, it was revealed he’ll be investigated for driving multiple vehicles on a suspended license.
Off the field issues have made a mockery of gradual progression on the field. Following a standout Rose Bowl performance in early 2010, he enjoyed a largely successful junior campaign where he considerably improved his completion percentage from 57% in 2009 to 65%. He also scored nine more passing touchdowns (27 in 2010 compared to 18 in 2009) and helped the Buckeye’s defeat Arkansas in the Sugar Bowl.
His career now ends in disgrace at Ohio State, after an off-season where he was especially indecisive about declaring for the NFL Draft and having opted not to turn pro (almost certainly because his stock was incredibly low) he consistently toyed with the idea of entering the supplemental draft as the disaster zone erupted around the programme and his own personal future.
While Pryor’s 2010 numbers suggest real improvement on the field and he has got unlimited athletic talent, it’s a major stretch to expect any team to invest any kind of faith in his potential. The off-field stuff will be a major killer and while he may think that someone will pay a modest mid-round price in the supplemental draft, I doubt any team will bite because there’s just too much baggage. We’re not even sure if a supplemental draft will even take place due to the lockout, but at least there’s some encouraging signs today that players and owners are back round the table.
ESPN’s Joe Schad is reporting that Pryor’s preference is the supplimental draft or the Canadian Football League. Personally, I think his best option may be to transfer to a FCS school where he won’t be required to sit for a year, he can dominate on the field and prove to NFL teams that his troubles are in the past. Right now it’s hard to imagine how his stock could get any lower from a pro-perspective and a year of positive story-lines wouldn’t do any harm. If he’s a 7th round flier in 2012, that’s probably more than he can expect to achieve right now via the supplemental draft if it ever takes place.
Here’s highlights of Pryor in the Sugar Bowl, courtesy of John Pasquariello.