Documents Show Former Ohio State Player Paid For Car


UPDATED: Monday May 16, 2011 11:07 AM

New documents uncovered on Wednesday shed more light on a car deal involving former Buckeye football player Thaddeus Gibson.

On Saturday, The Ohio State University said it would investigate allegations that some of its student-athletes got special deals on used cars, 10 Investigates' Paul Aker reported.

At least 10 players or their family members purchased vehicles from Auto Direct, located on East Dublin-Granville Road, according to public records obtained by 10 Investigates. The Columbus Dispatch reported Saturday that additional vehicles were sold to Ohio State athletes and their family members by Jack Maxton Chevrolet, also located on East Dublin-Granville Road.

There is nothing in NCAA rules that says players cannot buy vehicles from the same auto dealer.

WEB EXTRA:  OSU Rules On Dealership Issues/Violations (PDF File)  | SPECIAL SECTION:  10 Investigates


In 2007, then-Buckeye linebacker Thaddeus Gibson bought a Chrysler 300 from Jack Maxton Chevrolet.

A story in Saturday's Columbus Dispatch reported that records showed Gibson paid $0 for the car and the dealership could not explain it.

On Monday, the salesman who sold the car to Gibson told 10 Investigates the paperwork only showed $0 because the car was refinanced.

"He didn't pay zero for that car," said salesman Aaron Kniffin. "He paid for it. He owns and has it financed through a bank."

10 Investigates obtained state records that showed the sales price of the 2007 Chrysler at $13,700.

The Dispatch clarified that in Wednesday's paper, Aker reported.

But the salesman involved wants things to be even clearer, Aker reported.

Kniffin said he feels victimized and sent 10TV News a sworn affidavit, denying any wrongdoing. 

In his statement, Kniffin said he never gave the final approval for car deals because his managers did that, saying, "I sell cars for fair market value. They are not given any preferential treatment because they are an OSU student-athlete. They're treated like any other customer."

An Ohio State spokesman said the university is still investigating and reviewing documents related to the case and other issues.

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Previous Stories:

May 9, 2011: Agent: NCAA Might Investigate Ohio State Vehicle Allegations
May 7, 2011:  Ohio State To Investigate Player-Car Deals