Last night, Ohio State University decided to suspend head football coach Urban Meyer for three games. And they suspended Director of Athletics Gene Smith without pay for more than two weeks. The decision comes after an investigation revealed that Meyer mishandled domestic assault allegations made against former Ohio State assistant Zach Smith. Additionally, the investigation found that he lied about what he knew in July. You can read the entire report here.
With the suspension, Meyer will miss games against Oregon State, Rutgers, and TCU.
“I followed my heart and not my head,” Meyer said in his news conference. “… I gave Zach Smith the benefit of the doubt.”
Zach Smith Legal Issues
Smith has worked as an assistant under Meyer since 2009 when he was a graduate assistant at Florida. But Smith does have quite the criminal past. In 2009 Smith police arrested for domestic assault. In 2013 police arrested Smith for driving under the influence and he didn’t tell Urban Meyer at that time. Finally, police arrested smith on trespassing charges and had a restraining order filed against him in May. Which surprisingly, he also didn’t tell Urban Meyer which lead to his eventual firing last month.
Former Boston College offensive coordinator Ryan Day will be the interim head coach for Ohio State for the first three games but there is a much bigger picture here. What does Urban Meyer do with his tarnished image? He clearly knew that he had a wild child as an assistant and did very little about it. It’s true when they say “Win at all costs” but at what point do you ask “At what cost?” Let’s also not forget that he had a questionable player in Aaron Hernandez while at Florida too.
We’ve learned what happens to you when you lie (i.e. Joe Paterno). Not good things happen. A fitting word for this situation is Arrogance. One of the most powerful positions held at any school regardless of division is the football coach. Simply because he’s the football coach at (the) Ohio State he figured he could lie and get away with it. Until someone else knows the truth.
“I did a poor job, but had no intent to mislead.” Than what was your intent coach? Hope that you wouldn’t get caught? For what it’s worth, lead investigator Mary Jo White believe that Meyer didn’t ‘deliberately’ lie when asked about Smith in July. But yes, there’s an asterisk next to Meyer’s name. It deserves to be there.
–Brian Berard (@RockyBerard)