Geiger: We will punish businessman
No suite for you?
The fallout from the revelations that Columbus businessman Robert Q. Baker gave Ohio State quarterback Troy Smith improper benefits continues with OSU athletic director Andy Geiger telling The Associated Press that the university will be punishing Baker.
OSU could take away ticket-buying and suite-holding privileges from Baker, founder of Poly-Care Services, a Columbus health care company.
"We will take action, although we haven't met about that yet," Geiger told the AP.
Geoffrey Webster, an attorney for Poly-Care, blew the whistle on Baker earlier this month when he alerted OSU that Poly-Care employees saw an envelope being given to a Buckeye football player.
A Poly-Care intracompany report said that Smith received an envelope, asked what he had to do in return and was told he didn't have to do anything. Though Smith is suspended for Wednesday night's Alamo Bowl game against Oklahoma State in San Antonio, Texas, he is expected to be eligible to play as a junior next season.
In San Antonio, OSU head coach Jim Tressel said he is familiar with Baker. One of the reasons could be that he played for Tressel's late father, Lee, at Baldwin-Wallace. Baker was a running back whose senior season of 1980 was the final one for Yellow Jackets coach Lee Tressel.
"Do I know him? Yes," Tressel said Tuesday. "But I don't think he had ever traveled on an away trip with us. I'm pretty focused on other things when we're traveling, but I would have say that I don't believe he has ever traveled with us."
The Springfield News-Sun reports that Baker was going to run for a seat in the Ohio House of Representatives in 2002 before taking himself off the ballot shortly after filing. There has been enmity between Baker, a Republican, and Clark County Republican Party Chairman Dan Harkins.
Apparently, no hatchets have been buried.
"The allegations that have been made against Mr. Baker are consistent with my experience in Mr. Baker's involvement with local politics," Harkins said.