OSU/Sports Illustrated notebook: Vernand Morency posts open letter

The Sports Illustrated series on OSU continues to draw out former players speaking on behalf of their school.
by John Helsley and Gina Mizell Published: September 11, 2013

The Sports Illustrated series on OSU continues to draw out former players speaking on behalf of their school.

Vernand Morency, a running back for the Cowboys from 2002-04, took to his Facebook page to post an “open letter regarding Sports Illustrated's allegations against Oklahoma State.”

The post:

“I would like to address the recent Sports Illustrated article that attempts to tarnish the reputation of Oklahoma State University's athletic program. I am proud to represent such a high caliber program and was deeply saddened to read the allegations that my former teammates have made against OSU.

“First and foremost, I am appalled that Sports Illustrated has accused both Darrent Williams and Vernon Grant of receiving money from coaches or boosters. These amazing men, may they rest in peace, are unable to defend themselves or the University for which they gave their blood, sweat and tears.

“I was recruited by Coach (Joe) DeForest. I consider him a mentor and I am honored to call him my friend. Never, under any circumstances, did I receive or witness Coach DeForest or any other coach or donor offer monetary gifts for on-field performances. I no longer respect the men who are making these allegations. I previously considered these men teammates and friends. It is my opinion that the people that have asserted these allegations are not credible. I would not be surprised if these individuals received payment from Sports Illustrated for providing what I consider to be false and defamatory information to the magazine. It seems they have a clear vendetta against OSU, did not graduate from the university, have a history of drug use, have been arrested and/or were dismissed from the team due to conduct inconsistent with the OSU brand.

“During my time at OSU, I worked extremely hard and my efforts and dedication paid off. I find it interesting that I was never handed a “thick envelope” nor was I overpaid for doing menial tasks. However, those that spent much less time on the field than I allege receiving these incentives.

“I do not recall ever seeing boosters in the locker room after games and I was certainly never handed cash for any of my performances.

“While in college, I was falsely accused of something that I did not do. I am all too familiar with how the University officials and those associated with the football program are feeling at this particular time. I bleed orange and it hurts me all over again to have to listen to these allegations.

“I do not put my name on anything that I do not believe in 100% and I believe these hurtful and defamatory allegations are an attempt to harm not only the athletic department, but the University as a whole. Oklahoma State is an outstanding university with an impressive Athletic Department and unparalleled leadership. I have no doubt that Mike Holder and Oklahoma State University will handle this situation with the dignity and class that is consistent with the Oklahoma State University brand.”

LES MILES GOES ON THE OFFENSIVE

Continue reading this story on the...

by John Helsley
OSU Reporter Sr.
John Helsley grew up in Del City, reading all the newspapers and sports magazines he could get his hands on. And Saturday afternoons, when the Major League Game of the Week was on, he'd keep a scorecard for the game. So the sports appeal was was...
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by Gina Mizell
OSU Sports Reporter
Gina Mizell joined The Oklahoman in August of 2011 as the Oklahoma State beat writer, where she covered the Cowboys' historic run to the Big 12 championship and Fiesta Bowl in her first season on the job. Before arriving in Stillwater, Gina was...
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