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Micah Parsons’ father believes his son’s tweet, not NCAA violations, reason Ohio State ended recruitment

Five-star defensive end prospect Micah Parsons (left) poses for a photo with former Ohio State running back Eddie George (right) at the set of College GameDay on Sept. 9. Credit: Jack Westerheide | Photo Editor

Ohio State self-reported NCAA violations that occurred during five-star class of 2018 prospect Micah Parsons official visit to campus Sept. 9. Those violations resulted in the football program self-imposing a stoppage to the recruitment of Parsons and ruled him ineligible.

Terrence Parsons, Micah’s father, says there is more to the story.

In fact, Terrence Parsons said he believes Ohio State ended its recruitment of his son because of a tweet Micah sent at 11:38 p.m. after the Oklahoma game, in which he said he would consider making a quarterback change from J.T. Barrett to Dwayne Haskins.

The tweet immediately drew widespread criticism, with many questioning the appropriateness of a recruit — especially one amid his official visit — calling for a personnel change. He apologized the next day.

“After the visit, you know, the next day everything seemed strange because our itinerary said we’re supposed to meet with Urban Meyer at the end of our visit,” Terrence Parsons said. “But that never happened. So when that didn’t happen, I was like, I told his mom, I said, ‘Yeah, I don’t think they want our son no more.’”

Terrence Parsons said neither he nor his wife have had contact with anyone from Ohio State since arriving back home in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, on Sept. 10 — except for a brief exchange with head coach Urban Meyer.

“I texted them on the 10th, saying thank you and everything. [Defensive line coach] Larry Johnson, he briefly responded. Urban Meyer didn’t respond until that Friday, then he didn’t see my message and said ‘Can I talk later?’ I said, ‘Yeah, what’s good?’ He said, ‘Noon.’ I hit him back around noon. There was no reply or answer and that’s it.”

Terrence Parsons said he is not sure whether Micah has had contact with the coaching staff or university. On Sept. 19, Land of 10 reported Micah talked with Meyer.

Ohio State self-reported the violations to the NCAA on Sept. 26. But Terrence Parsons said he was never notified by Ohio State of the violations.

“We just want to know, if it was a violation and you realized that on the 26th, whether it hit the paper or not, you could at least let us know,” he said.

Terrence Parsons said neither he nor Micah knew it would be a violation to go to College GameDay and meet analysts including Kirk Herbstreit. Prospective prospects are not able to have contact with members of the media associated with former student-athletes, and members of the media are not allowed to be present during an institution’s recruiting contact with a prospect, according to the records.

“Had we known, no, we wouldn’t have went up on stage,” he said.

Terrence Parsons also questioned the accuracy of what Ohio State said in its self-reported violation. The university wrote that Micah Parsons was brought to the set of College GameDay by football recruiting assistant Ed Terwilliger because his parents “requested that Terwilliger stop the tour to take a look” since “the prospect’s parents had never seen College GameDay.”

Terrence Parsons called that “a lie,” saying the Parsons were nearby the GameDay set before an Ohio State game in 2016 — the family visited for both the Nebraska and Michigan game; GameDay was on site for the game against the Wolverines. He also said once they arrived at the set, they were fine to record the show on their phones from below and did not ask to come on stage, but were invited.

Ohio State did not respond to a request for comment about Terrence Parsons’ claims.

Five-star prospect Micah Parsons (wearing an Ohio State shirt) poses for a photo with former Ohio State running back Eddie George on from the set of College GameDay on Sept. 9. Football recruiting assistant Ed Terwilliger can be seen in a red shirt to the right of George. Credit: Jack Westerheide | Photo Editor

Photos also show a potential inconsistency in Ohio State’s account of Micah Parsons’ visit.

When the Parsons family came by the set, Ohio State wrote in its NCAA self-violation report, “Terwilliger stayed at the bottom of the stairs as Herbstreit brought the prospect and his father on stage.”

However, photos taken that day seem to show Terwilliger, wearing a red polo and khakis, on stage, standing behind Micah Parsons while the recruit took his picture with former Ohio State running back Eddie George.

Ohio State also did not respond to a request for comment about this potential inconsistency.

Micah Parsons was not the only player on a visit to tweet his thoughts about Ohio State’s quarterback situation. Five-star offensive tackle Jackson Carman tweeted, “OSU game this past weekend, they need to put in my bro [Haskins] and let him work,” two days after Ohio State’s 31-16 loss to Oklahoma.

Terrence Parsons said it was unfair for his son to be singled out. Ohio State has continued to recruit Carman.

He said his son did not mean he wanted a permanent quarterback change, but wished Haskins entered the game in the second half when the game was out of hand. Micah Parsons apologized for his tweet the morning after the Oklahoma game.

On Monday morning, when Micah Parsons posted a video on Twitter naming his top-six schools, he included Ohio State. The defensive end will sign a letter of intent with a school on Wednesday.

2 comments

  1. Dennis Nicholson '64

    This incident with Micah Parsons stinks to high heaven as they say. If recruits were not to have contact with the media from College Game Day, they should have been told so. The escort with him also should have known the rules and prevented the contact. If Urban Meyers was so upset with Parson’s tweet, then he should be a man and state that was the real reason. The player-recruit in this instance is the one being penalized for actions of university personnel. Doesn’t look good for the OSU recruiting process.

  2. What is even more disturbing is the lying that went on by OSU to try to spin their mistake. What’s up with that? They can’t be honest enough to admit that they screwed up? They try to blame the family? I think Parsons was really conflicted about OSU and PSU, and that he and the family had their feelings hurt by the way OSU reacted to his tweet about Barrett. That said, I still think OSU was at least even or maybe in the drivers seat until they cooled on him for his tweet.

    Just remember, when Meyer left Florida, he left it in a stinking pile of dog sh*t, after winning a national championship there. There were rumors of NCAA violations, kids getting arrested, and losing. Lot’s of losing in a conference that was improving on the field at a rapid pace. The Big Ten is improving at a rapid pace. PSU has a top five recruiting class this year, following an underrated top 15 class from last year. Michigan was pretty good this year despite replacing 20 or so starters, and we know Harbaugh will eventually win. Wisconsin has a system that means they never lose more than a couple games. OSU’s days of having a talent advantage are almost over.

    Hopefully for OSU, these kinds of disturbing reminders that Meyer rarely leaves a place better than he finds it, are anomalies, not harbingers of things to come.

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