Star quarterback Terrelle Pryor and four Ohio State teammates suspended for the first five games of the 2011 season apologized yesterday for selling championship rings and memorabilia and taking discounts from a tattoo parlor.
The NCAA will permit all five to play in the Sugar Bowl against Arkansas on Jan. 4.
"I didn't mean to hurt nobody at all and I didn't mean to bring anything down or embarrassment to our university because this is the greatest university in the nation," Pryor said, addressing his comments to alumni, former Ohio State players, fans, teammates and the coaching staff.
He added: "Hopefully I can someday get your forgiveness."
Pryor, along with starting tailback Dan "Boom" Herron, wide receiver DeVier Posey and offensive tackle Mike Adams, and backup defensive lineman Solomon Thomas, said they regretted their actions, which go back as far as 2 years.
The five juniors walked single file into a room at the Woody Hayes Athletic Center, sat at a table and then each spoke about a minute. Two spoke from written notes. Reporters were not allowed to ask questions.
The players used the phrase "Buckeye nation" nine times in referring to those to whom they were apologizing.
Ohio State spokesman Shelly Poe told the Associated Press she did not know if the apologies were part of players' punishment or if they were compelled to apologize by the coaches or asked to speak publicly.
Pryor must repay $2,500 for selling his 2008 Big Ten championship ring, Fiesta Bowl sportsmanship award and his 2008 gold pants, a tradition-rich charm given to players who are a part of a team that beats rival Michigan. Pryor called his actions "young, selfish mistakes."
_ Iowa running back Adam Robinson, 21, was charged with possession of marijuana Monday night in his hometown of Des Moines, Iowa, putting his career at Iowa in jeopardy. The Iowa State Patrol said Robinson was a passenger in a vehicle pulled over for not having front plates. Police said a trooper detected a marijuana odor from the vehicle, then found marijuana after a search.
Robinson was released with a promise to appear in court Jan. 5. A message left at his family's home in Des Moines wasn't immediately returned.
* Georgia receiver A.J. Green says he will sit down with his family after the Liberty Bowl on Friday to discuss whether he should enter the NFL draft. Green, a junior, was Georgia's leading receiver this season despite being suspended the first four games of the season for selling a bowl jersey to an agent.
Last night's games
* At Orlando, Fla., Russell Wilson threw for 275 yards and two TDs, leading North Carolina State past No. 22 West Virginia, 23-7, in the Champs Sports Bowl.
Wilson also had 41 yards rushing, Josh Czajkowski made three field goals and the Wolfpack (9-4) won nine games for only the second time in school history.
Geno Smith had 196 yards passing and an injured Noel Devine ran for 50 yards for the Mountaineers (9-4).
* At Tempe, Ariz., fill-in freshman Marcus Coker ran for 219 yards and two scores, and Micah Hyde scored on a meandering, 72-yard interception return in the fourth quarter to help Iowa beat Missouri, 27-24, in the Insight Bowl.
Undermanned due to injuries and suspensions, Iowa (8-5) turned to Coker, who had no trouble taking over with Robinson gone to a suspension, setting school records for yards and carries 33 in front of an Insight Bowl-record 53,453 fans.