Former OSU basketball coach Sean Sutton: 'I owe the people of Oklahoma an apology'

In a prepared statement, Sutton describes his road back from addiction and describes himself as a 'broken man'
FROM THE OKLAHOMAN STAFF REPORTS Modified: August 13, 2010 at 5:14 pm •  Published: August 13, 2010
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photo - Sean Sutton, left, former basketball coach at Oklahoma State University, kisses his wife, Trena Sutton, right, during a news conference Friday, Aug. 13, 2010, in Stillwater, Okla. Sutton says he will plead guilty to felony charges accusing him of illegally obtaining prescription drugs. Sutton said Friday he made a mistake and hopes to atone for it by educating others about the dangers of addiction. (AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki)
Sean Sutton, left, former basketball coach at Oklahoma State University, kisses his wife, Trena Sutton, right, during a news conference Friday, Aug. 13, 2010, in Stillwater, Okla. Sutton says he will plead guilty to felony charges accusing him of illegally obtaining prescription drugs. Sutton said Friday he made a mistake and hopes to atone for it by educating others about the dangers of addiction. (AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki)

Former Oklahoma State basketball coach Sean Sutton met with the media Friday prior to entering a entering a guilty plea for multiple drug charges. Here is his prepared statement:

Thank you for coming this morning.

It may be hard for some of you to believe, but I have looked forward to the opportunity to address the media for some time. I certainly do not take any pleasure in what has brought us together today. In fact, I regret more than any of you will ever know what happened earlier this year. I am embarrassed. My irresponsible action caused a lot of pain for a number of people. It is only by the grace of God and the unwavering love of my wife, sons, parents, brothers and many other family members and friends across the country that I can stand before you today at peace with the past and looking forward to the future.

Shortly, I will stand before a judge and plead guilty to unlawfully obtaining and possessing prescription drugs for non-medical purposes. I accept full responsibility for what happened. There are no excuses. I did it. I am sorry. And now I must face the consequences.

For 115 days, I willingly subjected myself to a demanding and rigorous drug recovery and rehabilitation program at what is without question the finest facility of its kind -- Cirque Lodge in Sundance, Utah. Even though the setting was beautiful, this was no vacation. The program was intense, and it was the most challenging thing I have ever done in my life. The people were tremendous, and they have created a place of peace, hope and recovery. I entered Cirque Lodge a broken man, recognizing I could lose everything I treasured in life.

Trena and I are very pleased that Gary Fisher, director of operations at Cirque Lodge, is here with us today. Gary, thank you. I can say without hesitation, Gary and his team not only helped me turn my life around, but saved my life; and in so doing, I am happier than I have been in many, many years. But, I am not naïve. I am on a journey for life. Failure is not an option. I have experienced firsthand the powerful grip prescription drug abuse and addiction can have on a person. And I have witnessed the horrible impact it can have on a family. I am committed to breaking the awful cycle of addiction that has harmed my family. I don't want my three boys -- Hunter, Spencer and Parker -- or my nieces and nephews to ever experience the heartache of addiction.

Prescription drug abuse and addiction is an epidemic in our country. If you recognize you have a problem, don't wait to ask for help. There is hope. You can change course and regain control of your life. I now have a lifelong commitment to self awareness, spiritual growth and recovery. I have my family, and I have my future. Life is good.

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