The tattoo parlor owner connected to a scandal in which Ohio State football players exchanged memorbilia for tattoos and cash pleaded guilty Tuesday to drug trafficking and money laundering charges.

According to the Columbus Dispatch, the attorney for Edward Rife tried to distance Rife from the scandal that led to coach Jim Tressel's resignation and quarterback Terrelle Pryor's departure.

"He was an unfortunate cog in the wheel," Stephen Palmer told reporters after the hearing. "He had no intention of harming anyone in the program."

Although the federal charges were not directly related to Ohio State, authorities learned of the memorbilia-for-gifts arrangement while investigating the charges against Rife.

Rife pleaded guilty to one count of money laundering and one count of conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute more than 200 pounds of marijuana. There was no evidence to link Ohio State or any players to the drug charges.