Ohio State president Gee apologizes to SEC

Ohio State president Gordon Gee apologized after reportedly criticizing the Southeastern Conference's academic standards. (Photo by The Associated Press)

Published: Thursday, May 30, 2013 at 8:13 p.m.
Last Modified: Thursday, May 30, 2013 at 8:13 p.m.
SANDESTIN — Ohio State president Gordon Gee and Big Ten commissioner Jim Delany have apologized to SEC commissioner Mike Slive for some negative remarks Gee made about the SEC in December that became public Thursday. “(Gee) called me a week or so ago and said he'd said some things they he wanted to apologize for,” Slive said Thursday. “I didn't know what they were. He didn't say what they were. He said they might come out and he just wanted (me) to know that he was very apologetic and very sorry for what he said.

“Then subsequently I got a call from Jim the other day. I don't think Jim, at that point, knew what the remarks were. But he made it abundantly clear that he has great respect for the Southeastern Conference, enjoys the competition and that Gordon Gee was not speaking for him and the Big Ten. “He apologized on behalf of himself and on behalf of the Big Ten conference.” According to public records obtained by the Associated Press, during a meeting of Ohio State's Athletic Counsel last December, Gee questioned the SEC's academic integrity. Gee was asked how to respond to SEC fans who say the Big Ten can't count because it now has 14 members. "You tell the SEC when they can learn to read and write, then they can figure out what we're doing," Gee responded. Slive was asked if he accepted Gee's apology. “Our focus is on the SEC,” Slive said. “Our goal is to make us better and we've been very successful and we're comfortable here. There really isn't much more to add to that.”

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