Jim Tressel’s decided he’s not going down without a fight.
.. There’s a new twist to the story. Sitting beside Tressel will be Gene Marsh, a former chairman of the infractions committee, from the Birmingham law firm Lightfoot, Franklin & White.
Marsh confirmed Friday he has represented Tressel for a couple of weeks and will be in Indianapolis at the hearing. When it comes to defending yourself against the NCAA, hiring Marsh represents bringing out the big guns.
Marsh certainly knows his way around the process. He’s got a tough row to hoe, but he’s already formulating strategies to save his client.
… Tressel’s known offense would get many coaches fired by now if he hadn’t won six straight Big Ten titles. SI.com reported that in the past 81 infractions cases involving coaches or administrators accused of the unethical conduct bylaw charged against Tressel, 78 of those people quit or were fired.
Marsh’s strategy in part focuses on what he says is Tressel’s positive track record.
“Obviously, the track record should matter because some people’s track records are good and some people’s track records are bad,” Marsh said Friday. “I was on the committee for nine years. All I can say is it always mattered to me.”
But Marsh doesn’t want to talk too much about Tressel’s past. That’s why he’s going to invoke the Alabama Defense.
“Any program that’s big is going to have issues,” Marsh said Friday. “All you have to do is look at Tuscaloosa. If you’re in this business, you’re going to have issues.”
You’ve gotta admit, it’s not like he’s the first one to have thought of it. Maybe Marsh can call Phil Fulmer as a character witness.