Meyer's Mea Culpa
Urban Meyer issued a statement via Twitter late this afternoon. He said he did report the 2015 incident involving Zach Smith, and reports saying otherwise are false. In regards to denying he knew anything, when asked at Big Ten Media Day, he said his words must be “clear, compassionate and most of all, completely accurate” when answering a reporter’s question or addressing a personnel issue. He said he failed in this regard, was not prepared to speak on such sensitive personnel issues at that time and apologized. You can read the rest below.
Breaking His Silence
Just two days after his attorney issued a statement saying he would not fight this battle with his ex-wife in the media, Zach Smith did an interview with ESPN and 105.7 The Zone in Columbus. He denies ever having hit his ex-wife, Courtney Smith, but said, "there were times things got out of hand and I had to defensively restrain her." Zach Smith, also, said Ohio State AD Gene Smith called him away from a recruiting trip in 2015, after the AD found out about the allegations. He, also, said Meyer pulled him off the practice field to question him about the allegations. It looks as if Gene Smith may have known about the alleged incident before even Meyer. Zach Smith indicated the Powell Police Department (the department which responded to the calls) may have called Gene Smith to tell him of the incident. Zach Smith said he did not even know about the allegations, until Gene Smith called him away from that recruiting trip.
Now, you knew Brett McMurphy, the writer who published the article with Courtney Smith’s accusations, was not going to just go away. After Zach Smith’s radio interview, McMurphy tweeted a screen grab of text messages allegedly between Zach and Courtney Smith, where Zach apologizes for choking Courtney. I’m sure he sees his opportunity to take down a coach, with the stature of Meyer slipping away, after Zach Smith indicated Gene Smith and Urban Meyer were aware of the allegations. Here is something to keep in mind about McMurphy’s latest tweet: it does not affect Urban Meyer’s situation, in my opinion. If Meyer and the school were aware, it doesn’t matter what the Smith’s were texting to each other.
McMurphy wants us to believe everyone involved is lying EXCEPT Courtney Smith. Urban Meyer, Zach Smith, Gene Smith, The Ohio State University and, quite possibly, even the Powell Police Department, are all lying. BUT, the person he interviewed to give him his “15 minutes of fame”, so to speak, is the only one telling the truth. Sorry, not buying it. Now, in no way am I bashing Courtney Smith with my last statements; these are about Brett McMurphy and only Brett McMurphy.
Equality For All
When it comes to Meyer’s statement, at first, I thought it was he and the university doing the “cover your ass” routine. But, after I had thought for a bit, it occurred to me, why should I question the validity of not only Meyer’s statement, but Zach Smith’s interview as well? Follow me on my thinking. Courtney Smith’s story was believed and given instant credibility by many in the public and media. So, why shouldn’t we do the same for Urban Meyer and Zach Smith? Courtney Smith most certainly does not have more credibility than Meyer and her ex-husband simply because she told her story first and made accusations. Please don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying she has any less credibility than the other two either. After some things have popped up about her, I have questions about how credible she really is, but, until those are verified, she’s no more or less believable than Urban Meyer and Zach Smith.
Well folks, looks like what we have here is a good old fashioned he said/she said pissing match between a divorced couple. That’s fairly common in our society, but this one has dragged Urban Meyer, the Buckeye football program, and the entire Ohio State University into the muck with it. It isn’t the job of Urban Meyer or any employer, for that matter, to mediate the marital affairs of his employees.
I hate to break it to McMurphy, his supporters in the media, and all of the Buckeye haters out there, but I don’t think Urban Meyer is going anywhere. Because Zach Smith indicated Meyer spoke to him about the allegations and AD Gene Smith, also, knew, I don’t see how Meyer can be even suspended, much less fired. Maybe I’m wrong, I certainly have been before, but I don’t see Meyer losing his job now.