COLUMBUS, Ohio — A former Ohio State wide receiver told the school's student newspaper that he sold Big Ten championship rings and other memorabilia for cash and got special car deals.

COLUMBUS, Ohio — A former Ohio State wide receiver told the school's student newspaper that he sold Big Ten championship rings and other memorabilia for cash and got special car deals.

Ray Small, frequently benched, suspended or disciplined during an erratic career at Ohio State from 2006-2009, confirmed to The Lantern that when it came to getting improper benefits "everyone was doing it."

He also said it was no big deal selling personal items given to the team: "We had four Big Ten rings. There was enough to go around." And added that, despite Ohio State's large and proactive NCAA compliance department, most of the school's student-athletes "don't even think about (NCAA) rules."

Ohio State didn't dismiss his charges but also didn't sound as if it would try to find out any more about them.

"At this point, the university does not have enough information regarding the reported matters concerning a former student-athlete who has been gone from the football program for two years," athletic department spokesman Dan Wallenberg said in an emailed statement.

Small was suspended for the 2010 Rose Bowl in what would have been his final game.

Five Buckeyes players are suspended for the first five games of the 2011 season for selling memorabilia to the owner of a local tattoo parlor. Athletes receiving money or other considerations not available to other students is considered an improper benefit under NCAA rules.

Coach Jim Tressel also is suspended for five games and is under investigation by the NCAA for knowing about his players' involvement and not telling his superiors for more than nine months.

Small said he used the money he got to cover routine expenditures.

"We have apartments, car notes," he said. "So you got things like that and you look around and you're like, 'Well I got (four) of them, I can sell one or two and get some money to pay this rent.'"