(CharlotteBuckeyes.com)Giovanni Strassini had a pretty good deal going. He’d show up as a guest at functions for a Charlotte-based Ohio State fan group, he’d pose for pictures and sign autographs, and he’d talk about his exploits as an All-American tight end for the Buckeyes in the mid-1970s on Facebook.
The only problem? Well, Ohio State has never heard of Giovanni Strassini.
Of course, that’s where the story gets weird.
Strassini (or whoever he is) saw his story start to unravel on a message board thread at BuckeyePlanet.com. The posters on that site easily figured out there was no Strassini who wore No. 89 for the Buckeyes. He wasn’t the third basemen for the baseball team in that era either, as he had also claimed. He definitely didn’t score an 8-yard touchdown in the 1976 Rose Bowl, one of the more easily verifiable facts to look up. The Buckeyes’ only touchdown that day was a 3-yard touchdown run by Pete Johnson.
The Rose Bowl ring Strassini posted on Facebook didn’t look exactly like the actual Rose Bowl ring from the season he claimed it was from. And he wasn’t drafted by the Cleveland Browns either, blowing up another one of his stories.
Yet somehow, Strassini pulled this scam off for at least a couple years before anyone noticed.
His Facebook account under the name “Giova Stroh” has been deleted but here’s a screen shot from the cached page: