VIDEO: Jim Tressel Resignation Addressed By AD Gene Smith

In the wake of Jim Tressel's sudden resignation as Ohio State's football coach on Monday morning, the Buckeyes' athletics director, Gene Smith, released a video statement in which he provided a detailed timeline that led to this morning's announcement. 

Smith said that he met with Tressel on Sunday evening when the football coach returned from vacation, and they discussed the "state of the program." At that point, according to Smith, Tressel decided to resign; the two met again on Monday morning in Tressel's office, where the coach handed in his official letter of resignation. Tressel also addressed the team, explaining how the transition would work.

Before meeting with players and the rest of the coaching staff, Smith said he offered the interim football coaching job to Luke Fickell, the co-defensive coordinator who already was in line to coach the team for the first five games of the season. Fickell accepted the new offer, the Smith did not discuss any plans for Fickell or the head coaching job after the 2011 season. Smith also met with the rest of the coaching staff and support personnel before he and Fickell met with the players. 

The main message from Fickell to the players, according to Smith: Focus on the books, as Ohio State is heading into finals week. "They obviously need to focus on finishing their classes," Smith said, "which is really what we're all about."

At the end of his statement, Smith finally addressed the ongoing scandals and NCAA investigations surrounding the Ohio State football program:

As you all know, we are under NCAA investigation. We will not discuss any of the matters around that case, or any further accusation that may emerge. We will do what we always do: We will respond to them, collaborate with the NCAA and try to find the truth.

You can view the complete video statement from Ohio State athletics director Gene Smith below.

 

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