(Photo: AP Photo/U.S. Marshals)
The man who was essentially the snowball that eventually brought down Ohio State's football program is headed to prison for three years.
But tattoo parlor owner Edward Rife is headed to prison for drug trafficking and money laundering, not for the memorabilia-for-tattoos scheme that brought to light many of the Buckeyes' players’ transgressions that has triggered an ongoing NCAA investigation.
Several players, including star quarterback Terrelle Pryor, were suspended for the first five games of the season after details of their actions with Rife were detailed. But as it turns out that was only the beginning of the Buckeyes' problems as more scandals broke, eventually forcing the resignation of head coach Jim Tressel and the early departure of Pryor to the NFL this summer.
Rife, 31, was apologetic and tearful after he was sentenced to prison by a federal judge.
"I know what I did was wrong and I regret it every day," he said. "I never plan on doing anything wrong again."