Oklahoma State’s Orange Pride Gets Shut Down

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A typically exhaustive NCAA investigation into Oklahoma State football reached its conclusion Friday, with the Cowboys football program receiving a punishment from the NCAA that is tantamount to dumping a bottle of Aquafina into the Pacific Ocean. The Orange Pride organization, on the other hand?

“The school and football program may not use the Orange Pride program, and may not organize another student group to assist in recruiting prospects for four years.”

Orange Pride just received an NCAA sanction that spans the original length of Penn State’s since-retracted bowl ban, and a death penalty longer than that of SMU in the late 1980s. Seems harsh for a recruiting-hosting group that describes itself thusly on OKState.com:

It will be a very exciting year! We have a wonderful staff and look forward to another great recruiting season next year! Being a part of Orange Pride is a huge responsibility. You will be required to attend and work each home football game for the 2015 Football season, raise $300.00 in sponsorship money, attend weekly meetings, and help with football camps, Junior Days, Coaches Clinic, etc.

Investigations into Oklahoma State began with Thayer Evans’ Sports Illustrated series, a lengthy investigation that seemed to begin with ambitions of matching Skip Bayless’ work covering the SMU scandals, but ended up petering out. Orange Pride’s place in the Evans’ series was salacious; the author detailed lurid trysts between hosts and prospective Cowboys.

That portion of the series even came with the tagline THE SEX. Nothing in our puritanical society garners attention quite like sex.

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It’s concerning that Orange Pride is getting a more harsh treatment than Oklahoma State’s drug-testing practices, the one facet to the SI piece that had some meat to it. The lack of a uniform policy on drugs is one of the more confounding things in college sports at the moment, and Friday’s announced decision does nothing to address it.

But if rumors of sex surface, the NCAA is ready to smack an organization like Orange Pride faster than a Catholic school head nun’s ruler.