Urban Meyer gives his side as Ohio State probe continues

Annette Crawford
August 4, 2018

First, Meyer issued a statement admitting he lied at Big Ten Media Days last week when he said he had no knowledge of a 2015 incident involving receivers coach Zach Smith but insisting he followed proper protocol at the time when informed of it.

Meyer is on paid leave while Ohio State investigates the issue.

Zach, a former recruiting coordinator and wide receivers coach, was sacked by Ohio State on July 23, after reports surfaced that that an order of protection had been filed against him by his ex-wife Courtney Smith. In the letter, Meyer apologized for not being "clear, compassionate and most of all completely accurate" in responses to questions about the issue that reporters asked during Big Ten Media Days last month. And I did so regarding the Zach Smith incident in 2015.

"My intention was not to say anything inaccurate or misleading", Meyer wrote.

Ohio State football coach Urban Meyer has been placed on paid leave.

In the interview with Stadium, Courtney Smith said she believed that Meyer knew about the allegations.

"I can't say it didn't happen because I wasn't there", Meyer said at the time.

During his interview with ESPN, Zach Smith was read Meyer's statement. "All I know is I never hit my wife". While over three decades of coaching I have learned to ignore how others define me, I do feel it necessary to share the truth with the Buckeye family. As the son of an awesome woman and the husband to another and, as the father of two incredible young women, those who know me best know the admiration and respect I have for all women.

Courtney Smith told McMurphy: "He took me and shoved me up against the wall, with his hands around my neck".

Zach Smith was sacked on July 23 after he was served a civil protection order on behalf of Courtney Smith.

Meyer said he will fully cooperate with investigators. The Smiths divorced in 2016. In light of his statement, it remains unclear if Meyer will be reinstated, although he closed his statement by saying: "I ask that you continue to support the incredible coaches and student-athletes in our program, and I look forward to rejoining them soon".

Smith, the grandson of late Buckeyes coach Earle Bruce, a mentor to Meyer, played for Meyer when he was coach at Bowling Green in 2001-02. No charges were filed.

Meyer is 73-8 in seven seasons in Columbus, highlighted by a 14-1 national championship season in 2014.

Had Meyer known about the accusations and not reported them through the proper channels, it would have likely violated the terms of the contract extension he signed with the school earlier this year.

Firing Meyer without cause would cost Ohio State a almost $40 million buyout.

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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