All-America wide receiver Cris Carter won't play football again at Ohio State, Athletic Director Rick Bay said yesterday. Bay could have asked the NCAA to let Carter play this fall.

"We chose not to appeal," Bay said, "not because we couldn't win but because we just didn't feel good about it. I'm not heartless . . . But I couldn't see clear to do it. . . . Even if we won the appeal on some technical basis, we'd have a tough time looking our colleagues in the face . . . Our principles are being tested. It's not a vindictive thing. I'm not out to ruin Cris Carter's life. But his position today is no different than it was six weeks ago."

Carter, declared ineligible for dealing with agent Norby Walters, will remain in limbo at least another week. He was to have been included in the NFL's supplemental draft yesterday, along with Charles Gladman and lesser players. Gladman, who had been a running back at the University of Pittsburgh, was declared ineligible because he wouldn't cooperate with an investigation of agents.

But yesterday's draft was a dud from the beginning. Several NFL teams, including the Washington Redskins, opted out, fearing reprisals from college coaches. Then on Wednesday the NCAA showed its willingness to grant what many college administrators termed "amnesty" to players who lost eligibility by dealing with agents.

On Thursday, the NFL withdrew Carter and Gladman from the draft. NFL Commissioner Pete Rozelle said his league would wait another week to see if Carter and Gladman could return to their college teams. Sports officials at Pittsburgh seem interested in appealing in behalf of Gladman.

So the NFL was left with four players in yesterday's supplemental draft and nobody wanted any of them. Nobody drafted defensive back Dan McFadden of the University of Miami, or running back Paul Miller, or wide receiver Marquis Pleasant of Southern Methodist or defensive back Chester Savoie of Nicholls State. Miller, 20, last played running back at Princeton (Ill.) High School.

If any team had drafted a player, it would have lost a choice in next year's regular draft. Now the four athletes can sign with any team that wants them.

Now that there's a chance of collegiate eligibility being restored, other cases are surfacing.

Alabama's basketball coach, Wimp Sanderson, is wondering if he might be able to get star center Derrick McKey back. The NBA's Seattle SuperSonics drafted him, after he lost his eligibility by dealing with Walters. Lew Cryer of the NCAA says no, because McKey's case is different.

"He has been drafted by the NBA," Cryer said. "That obviously has major significance. In the past, when someone has submitted themselves to the NBA draft, they aren't eligible to get their eligibility restored. But up until {now}, there were a lot of things that hadn't happened before." . . .

Texas Attorney General Jim Mattox said Methodist bishops spent $500,000 investigating SMU's pay-for-play football scandal. Now, he told the Dallas Morning News, he might seek damages from some of SMU's former trustees so that the bishops can be reimbursed.

"It's just an awful lot of money," he said. "That was clearly an expense that was caused by the abuse that took place in the system."