Suspended Ohio players can play in Sugar Bowl

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Five Ohio State American football players, including quarterback Terrelle Pryor, were suspended on Thursday for five games next season for selling awards and gifts but can still play in next month's Sugar Bowl.

The National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) said the players must also repay money and benefits they received ranging from $1,000 to $2,500 to charity for selling off items including championship rings.

Sanctioned along with Pryor were running back Dan Herron, receiver DeVier Posey, offensive tackle Mike Adams and defensive end Solomon Thomas.

Linebacker Jordan Whiting must also sit out the first game of the 2011 season for receiving discounted services, the NCAA said.

The NCAA said the quintet were allowed to play in the Jan 4. Sugar Bowl game against Arkansas due to a lack of specific rules education by the university that made it reasonable to suppose they were unaware they were committing violations.

(Reporting by Larry Fine, Editing by John Mehaffey)