Former OSU players call Sports Illustrated article a "lie"

Former OSU players call Sports Illustrated article a "lie"

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OKLAHOMA CITY -

In the first part of the series on Oklahoma State football, Sports Illustrated cited eight players who said football players were getting paid for plays, or working sham jobs. Now, several other former players say it is impossible that any of these alleged violations could have been happening around them.

The article paints a picture of coaches handing over hundreds dollar bills to players who made a great play or of boosters walking through the locker room after games to hand out cash.

Related: T. Boone Pickens responds to SI allegations

"Everyone knows that doesn't happen in college football. The only people you would see in there were maybe a few former players, and those were Oklahoma State greats- Thurman Thomas, Barry Sanders, just to name a few," former linebacker Andre Sexton said.

"When you talk to the guys that were there, this stuff just didn't happen and the way they present the story just didn't happen," former center Ben Buie said.

Buie said he was shocked to read the accusations and see Sports Illustrated interviewed people he knew and played with.

Read more: OSU launches web page to respond to Sports Illustrated report

"I was hoping that it would be guys that I didn't really know and it ended up being guys that were my age and guys that I played with and I knew personally," he said "And I also knew personally that this stuff wasn't true."

"As I was going through reading it, I was just getting madder and madder. Just kind of making a personal check list as I was going through like well, 'that's not true,' that's not true, ' that's not true,'" Buie said.

Buie started his career at OSU in 2000. He was there during the years Sports Illustrated focused on. Andre Sexton joined in 2005.

"I was a member of Coach Gundy's first recruiting class, so I know what we did in his organization," Sexton said. "I helped recruit a lot of these players and I know it was done the right way, for sure."

Sexton and Buie feel Sports Illustrated set out to write a bad story and steered everything to go that way.

"A lot of players have a lot of thoughts right now and we're kind of confused on if you wanted to write a story on a program, you should at least, you know, get several sides of the story," Sexton said.

"It kind of sounds like they just had an agenda and they just picked and choose what they wanted to get out of it and kind of twisted the story to what they wanted to, is kind of how I feel about it," Buie said.

Related: Former OSU players respond via Twitter to Sports Illustrated article

Related: Students react to first OSU Sports Illustrated article

Sports Illustrated said it's series on OSU would show how the school's football program became a powerhouse in short amount of time. Buie has another explanation.

"[Coach Les Miles] changed the attitude of the program and it wasn't because he was in there passing out $100 bills to everybody," Buie said.

Six of the eight players SI cited in its first article were either dismissed or transferred from OSU.

Related: OSU Coach Mike Gundy responds to Sports Illustrated violation allegations

"A lot of players have a lot of thoughts right now and we're kind of confused on, if you wanted to write a story on a program, you should at least get several sides of the story. You didn't interview anyone that's graduated, did everything right on the field, had a successful career after football," Sexton said.

"I mean, some of these numbers were just pulled out of the air. It's like their flame had burnt out and they just wanted to get their five seconds of fame, I don't know," he said.

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