STILLWATER — While it is unclear what was said behind closed doors during Dez Bryant’s meeting with NCAA officials on Tuesday, documents shed light on the Oklahoma State receiver’s plea to be reinstated.
In a letter to NCAA officials, Bryant explained why he lied about his interaction with former NFL player Deion Sanders, apologized for the lie and admitted he deserved to be punished but asked for leniency with regards to the severity of the punishment.
Bryant was in Indianapolis on Tuesday with hislawyer, Willie Baker, and OSU compliance officer Scott Williams. The meeting was the next step in the appeal to have Bryant reinstated after the All-America receiver was ruled ineligible last Wednesday for a violation of NCAA Bylaw 10.1.
There was no immediate announcement nor is there a timeline for a decision to be made.
The documents, obtained by The Oklahoman
through an open records request, include OSU’s letter of reinstatement on behalf of Bryant and a letter from Bryant to NCAA officials explaining his actions.
A document revealed Bryant lied to NCAA officials on three separate occasions. At a meeting on July 24, a conference call on Aug. 26 and another meeting on Sept. 16, the junior receiver denied meeting Sanders. The purpose of the inquiry was to find out Bryant’s involvement or knowledge of violations related to his relationship with Sanders.
On Sept. 24, Sanders told NCAA official Marcus Wilson that he had met Bryant at Fieldhouse USA in Frisco, Texas, and that Bryant had visited his home, Wilson informed OSU of Sanders’ statement on Sept. 25, and the Cowboys held Bryant out of their Sept. 26 game against Grambling State.
In its letter, the university asked for Bryant to be reinstated in part due to an extremely difficult personal life and upbringing.The portion of the letter that talked about Bryant’s upbringing was redacted by OSU officials. OSU also stated that the facts are "at best a minor secondary violation”.
In Bryant’s letter, he began by apologizing and making it clear he understood the mistake he made. The junior then gave reasons why he lied and asked for another chance to play football at OSU.
"I am very, very sorry I did not tell the full truth when I talked with Mr. Wilson in July," Bryant said in the letter.
"There is no one else to blame, I just panicked because I was scared and afraid I was in trouble. Mr. Wilson asked about meeting Deion Sanders. I denied that I had ever met him at Fieldhouse USA.