“I was never told about anything and nothing ever came to light.”

I have a lot of readers and commenters of the blog who are members of the legal profession, so it’s no surprise to see several comments here reminding folks that Zach Smith has not been found guilty of a crime in a court of law.  It’s a fair point, as far as it goes, but I think my fellow barmates need to keep their eyes on the prize.

What’s important here isn’t Smith being a criminal in an official sense.  It’s that Urban Meyer is full of shit.

With all the domestic violence issues currently happening in the NFL, Meyer was asked about he handles those topics with his team and whether he uses them as examples of what to avoid.

“Every day, every day,” Meyer said. “They know it, they see it. How do you not see it? They are all teachable moments, and if you don’t use that … I think everybody in the country used that.”

As far as his policy with domestic violence with his team, Meyer reaffirmed that it’s zero tolerance.

“Oh yeah,” Meyer said. “We had a couple issues that we had to evaluate, but that’s one of the core values.”

So how do you run that highfalutin standard up against this?

• Zach Smith was charged with misdemeanor criminal trespass in May. Courtney was granted a protection order against him July 20, alleging she had been intimidated and harassed by him. The trespass charge came after Zach Smith allegedly dropped one of the couple’s children at Courtney’s residence instead of a public place.

• Monday morning, longtime college football reporter Brett McMurphy reported that Courtney accused Zach of domestic violence in 2009 while Zach was a graduate assistant on Meyer’s staff at Florida and Courtney was two months pregnant. No charges were filed.

• Monday afternoon, McMurphy reported that Courtney had accused Zach of domestic violence again in 2015 and the coach had been investigated for felony domestic violence and felony assault. No charges have been filed.

Easy.  You pretend none of it ever happened.

After leaving the podium, Meyer was asked to clarify his comments on Smith’s firing, and he said of the 2009 incident (via elevenwarriors.com), “We found out what happened according to both parties, we met with them. There were no charges. Everything was dropped. It was a very young couple and I saw a very talented young coach and we moved forward.”

On whether he had any regrets about how he and the school handled the dismissal of Smith, who was hired by Meyer when he arrived at Ohio State in 2012, the coach said, “No. We handled it the right way. I’ve been down that road — ‘Why didn’t you do this,’ or ‘Why didn’t you do that?’ — and it’s a very personal matter.

“Domestic issues are a lot of he said, she said. We care about people as they move forward.”

Of the reports on another incident in 2015, Meyer told reporters he’d received “a text late last night” that “something happened” involving Smith that year, but he claimed “there was nothing.” Meyer added, “Once again, there’s nothing — once again, I don’t know who creates a story like that.”

McMurphy had cited a Powell (Ohio) Police Department arrest report from Oct. 26, 2015, in which Courtney Smith was said to have been “a victim of sustained physical abuse” by her then-husband. Officers returned to their home two weeks later to investigate a “menace-by-stalking claim,” but charges were not filed in either case.

In his clarifying comments Tuesday, Meyer said of the 2015 allegations, “I can’t say it didn’t happen because I wasn’t there…”

That works until it all comes out in the public eye.

Asked if he fired Smith on Monday “because any of this became public” or “because there was another incident that led to the latest protective order on Friday,” Meyer said he wouldn’t “get into that,” as it was “a very personal matter.” The 54-year-old coach, who took over the Buckeyes’ program before the 2012 season and led it to a national title in 2014, added that “we are in a public world” and “to say that doesn’t have something to do with it, it does a little bit.”

“I try to stay focused on what’s the most important thing. That’s our players and our team. But I do understand the value,” Meyer said. “It’s the Ohio State University is bigger than all of us. So you have to do what’s right by them. And the timing. It wasn’t just my decision. It was a group effort on several people that I rely on.”

The reality is that Smith isn’t out of a coaching job because of something he did or didn’t do.  He’s out of a job because his history — and, more importantly, Urban Meyer’s failure to act despite claiming to enforce a zero tolerance policy — became a public embarrassment for Urban Meyer.  All the gobbledygook in the world trying to spin the dismissal as something noble on Meyer’s part won’t change that.

“And then this recent one was you press pause, it’s something our team lives by, E + R = O, you press pause and get your mind right and step up, press pause and gather information, get your mind right, gather energy, and then step up to do the right thing. That’s the position I hold. That’s how we did that.”

Meyer is a better coach than human being.  Not that that’s saying much, but I sure hope he keeps getting called out on his sanctimony.

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35 Comments

Filed under Urban Meyer Points and Stares

35 responses to ““I was never told about anything and nothing ever came to light.”

  1. Hogbody Spradlin

    Just one nit to pick. Calling this sanctimony assumes Corch has the ability to feel shame and wants to hide it. I think he’s completely amoral and will say whatever it takes to get past the problem. “Zero tolerance” my fat yiddish ass.

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  2. stoopnagle

    He’s a shit human being. People like him are what is wrong in the world. But he gets paid in large part because we value the superficial and temporary in America and not the substantial and eternal.

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  3. PTC DAWG

    I don’t think any of doubt your statement about Meyer being FOS.

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  4. Greg

    “Canecur”…..He has been FOS for sometime now.

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  5. Jeff Sanchez

    I can’t think of anyone in CFB I loathe more than Urban

    What a slime.

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  6. Russ

    He’s a piece of shit just like the coward assistant coach that he didn’t want to fire.

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  7. paul

    Unfortunately, we hear similar stories of abused women all too frequently. It simply makes no sense to me that the women involved often choose not to file charges. No man who respects you will ever threaten or harm you in any way for any reason under any circumstances. If it happens once it will happen again. Get rid of him the very first time it happens. Do not, under any circumstances, give him a second chance. No exceptions. Then use every available means to protect yourself and your children.

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    • Fear, love, kids, money… There are many reasons people don’t leave abusive relationships. Down playing or even denying it is the same as denying CTE, concussions, rape, PTSD etc. Expecting someone to think rationally while going through something like that is slightly unrealistic.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Snoop Dawgy Dawg

    I thought a lot of states treated Domestic Violence as acts against the state, i.e. if the cops are called on a DV incident, the state presses charges against the offender, not the injured party?

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    • Mayor

      Correct Snoop. In my county if the cops get called the caller loses all control over what happens. We have a standing court order in place. Most GA counties do. Very often the call to the cops is made just because the woman got pissed off at the guy, not because of any real physical violence. Just ask Bobby Cox and his wife about that. The current state of the law is a damn good reason for a man to not get married or have any permanent relationship with a woman. In fact some countries are having a real problem with the birthrate precisely because men won’t get into permanent relationships with women there any more. https://www.dw.com/en/why-fewer-japanese-are-seeking-marriage/a-19349576

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  9. Spike

    Snoop, you are correct. But, all too often the woman insists on dropping any allegations or refuses to cooperate with the police and prosecutor, or changes her story etc. Hell, a lot of times the woman will go bail the guy out of jail after the police have responded to HER 911 call and arrested him. So, as a consequence the charges are usually dropped. The man learns he can more often than not get away with it and the cycle repeats itself. Just my two cents, speaking from lots of experience.

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    • My interpretation of events — and it’s pure speculation on my part — is that we’re looking at someone who was reluctant to put a man in jail (maybe because she didn’t want to risk losing those child support payments) but really wanted to find some way to have the courts and cops keep him away from her.

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      • Spike

        Perhaps all that is part of it. All too often the woman is very dependent on the male (husband, boyfriend, significant other, child’s father etc.) for financial support for their children. If the man is jailed or otherwise prosecuted and has conditions of bail or his probation to have no contact with her, which in some states is required by statute, this becomes problematic. So many times the woman will arrange somehow to have the charges dropped to avoid this issue and placate the abuser. There are domestic violence injunctions that are available to her if sufficient circumstances exist to keep the man away from her. But, if they have kids together these also become difficult issues to deal with too. Many times in injunction matter the woman will come into court and beg that is be dismissed against the man, or she will simply ignore the terms herself and reestablish contact or a relationship with the man who abused her. And it keeps going on and on until something really bad happens such as severe life threatening beatings or even homicides. But, in the real world, the woman has to follow thru with her complaint with the authorities and cooperate or the charges get dismissed or such a light punishment is imposed that is tantamount to no punishment at all. And the abuser learns what he can, and cannot, get away with. And people like Corch just look the other way. (that last part was my unsolicited, gratuitous, editorialized shot at that asshole.)

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  10. 3rdandGrantham

    Smart coaches like Meyer, who are known for turning over every leaf while obsessing over every detail, don’t conveniently get stupid and sloppy when it comes to something bad like this. Whether we are talking spygate or rampant NCAA violoations, I’ve always laughed at otherwise smart coaches who run their teams with an iron fist suddenly proclaiming to have no clue what is going on.

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    • Cojones

      Yeah, it would be like Trump saying he knows nothing of his staff and family meeting with the Russians in Trump Tower.

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  11. Urban Meyer is an elite coach who runs elite programs. But I can’t thank you enough for calling out his sanctimony. That’s why I’ve long called him CFBs biggest fraud. It has nothing to do with his talent as a leader of a program. It has everything to do with his holier than thou approach to “leading men” and “doing it the right way.”

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  12. Nashville West

    As a coach at a public university wasn’t this guy a state employee ? If he was this doesn’t appear to be normal. First, he is entitled to some level of due process, at least an opportunity to be heard, usually more. Second, there is no such creature as “zero tolerance” in most public employment. Finally, it is unclear what his family situation has to do with his ability to coach.
    I don’t want to defend this guy, he seems like a real jerk. But it does seem like some reasonable questions aren’t being asked.

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    • Mayor

      Absolutely right NW!! Personally I am getting pretty tired of people automatically losing their jobs just because someone (not always a woman) accuses someone else of wrongdoing. No hearing, no real finding of fault, no nothing. Accusation made–person gets fired. And an awful lot of the time the charges turn out to be baseless. We have an entire court system with judges, prosecutors, cops, jailers, probation officers, counselors, etc. who are tasked with dealing with this problem. Why is the employer even involved at all? If someone gets convicted–maybe then. But with no adjudication of guilt? I really wish someone who is falsely accused and gets summarily fired would sue the employer and get a healthy judgment. There are some states that have protections against this sort of thing–California comes to mind. That might stop some of this “rush to judgment” lemming-like behavior that we are seeing so much of these days.

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      • gastr1

        You guys should get your knuckles off the ground now and again, it’s really unseemly.

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        • gastr1: do not even think the knuckles are that high, but are buried.

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        • ChiliDawg

          TIL Mayor is an angry incel. Puts things into perspective.

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          • Mayor

            You must be too stupid to read and comprehend the English language. I hope you don’t find out the hard way by losing your job when someone falsely accuses you of something.

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            • ChiliDawg

              Ooooh, did I hit too close to home, sweetheart? I don’t worry about things like that because I’m not a shitbag who would ever find himself in a situation where he could be credibly accused of physical or sexual abuse. You, on the other hand… I’m not so sure.

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    • ASEF

      I am guessing both his contract and Ohio law favor an at-will approach to things?

      I strongly doubt tOSU’s lawyers let this o forward without dotting their i’s and crossing their t’s.

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  13. Opelikadawg

    The only criterion that Corch considers is “Will this help me win football games?” If he never won another game, he would still be a better coach than human being.

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  14. Goes to show: You win and win a lot, there are a lot of passes. I can understand women being very reluctant to come forward, cause a lot of times they are not believed, or worse they brought it on themselves. meyer keeps winning, OSU keeps looking the other way.

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