Art Schlichter, Ex-OSU Quarterback, Probed in Alleged Sports Ticket Scheme

Ohio State University logo (wikipedia)
Ohio State University logo (wikipedia)

(CBS/WBNS) Former Ohio State All-American quarterback Art Schlichter is being investigated for his role in an alleged sports ticket scheme that bilked people out of millions of dollars, CBS affiliate WBNS reports.

Sources close to the investigation said that Schlichter and Anita Barney, a Dublin woman whose husband was a co-founder of the Wendy's restaurant chain, allegedly promised sports fans hundreds of thousands of dollars in sporting event tickets but never delivered.

WBNS has uncovered at least six lawsuits filed against Barney.

Those close to the investigation said that Barney took their money for tickets to various events, including the Ohio State-Michigan game and this weekend's Super Bowl, but the tickets were never produced.

Barney is accused of writing bad checks to cover the debts.

Barney could not be reached for comment on Friday, but her attorney said she herself was conned by Schlichter, reports the station.

The attorney said that Schlicter, 50, took advantage of Barney's sympathy for his gambling problem and eventually loaned him money. Then, the attorney said, Schlichter convinced her that the only way she would get the money back was if she helped him raise money for sports tickets.

"Anita is without question the victim of a massive crime," the attorney said.

Schlicter, a former Buckeye great and admitted gambling addict who served time in prison for fraud and forgery, confirmed to The Columbus Dispatch that he was going to meet with law enforcement.

In a text message, Schlicter wrote that "it will help a lot of people and "this addiction is a [expletive]." 

According to the paper, Schlicter has served time in 44 prisons or jails since 1994. He was drafted by the then-Baltimore Colts in 1982, but his gambling problem ruined his professional prospects.