Sports Illustrated: Orange Pride members had sex with OSU recruits
The latest issue in the controversial report by Sports Illustrated into alleged wrongdoing by Oklahoma State University has been released and claims recruits were escorted around by hostess from the university who had sex with them.
SI's fourth report claims the hostess program at Oklahoma State, Orange Pride, was a key contributor to the program's rise. A dozen players who played from 2001-2011 told Sports Illustrated that a small number of Orange Pride members had sexual relations with recruits during recruiting visits.
The article claims former head coach Les Miles and current coach Mike Gundy would interview potential Orange Pride candidates.
Les Miles responded to SI's question via email:
"The volunteers' role in our program was important and I wanted to stress how seriously we took their duties and responsibilities and the manner in which we expected those students to conduct themselves if they were selected for Orange Pride." As for the role of sex in recruiting, Miles wrote, "I am not aware of this ever happening and am quite sure that no staff member was aware of recruits sleeping with this group of students or any other students."
Gundy declined comment and the university told SI it may review the organization if the magazine's findings warrant.
SI reports Chris Wright, a former defensive back, said he hosted a recruit in 2001. He said he took him to a club and couple house parties but after he left, Joe DeForest, the special teams coach, told him "You didn't do your job".
Thomas Wright, no relation to Chris, told Sports Illustrated he went on a visit and smoked marijuana and drank alcohol until he passed out. He said when he woke up, he had relations with an Orange Pride member who wasn't his officials hostess.
Orange Pride has been around since at least the 1980s but according to SI's sources, the group changed drastically when Les Miles took over.
SI says in 2000 there were 10-15 members. By 2002, there were 48.
Sports Illustrated says that season OSU's recruiting class was ranked number 25 in the nation in 2002. When Orange Pride jumped in number to 54 members the next year, the Cowboys' class climbed to 15h in the country.
Sports Illustrated draws the conclusion that Orange Pride's growing prominence coincides with OSU's resurgence.