In the tone-deaf apology that Urban Meyer made earlier this week after getting suspended for three games, at no point did he mention domestic abuse victim Courtney Smith by name. When asked what he would say to Smith directly, the Ohio State head coach deflected and simply said he was sorry “we were in this situation.” Just like the entire affair, including Ohio State’s curious conclusions regarding the way Meyer handled Zach Smith’s employment in spite of what he knew, it seemed like everyone came away from the press conference feeling like Meyer didn’t really believe or care about Courtney Smith.
In spite of their best efforts to begin sweeping things under the rug so Meyer can get back to winning football games as quickly as possible, Ohio State had created a whole new wave of anger and frustration over the way things were being handled and perceived.
Feeling the heat after numerous opinion columns denigrating his character and reputation, Meyer released a new statement clarifying his position on Courtney Smith and domestic violence.
— Urban Meyer (@OSUCoachMeyer) August 24, 2018
“My words and demeanor on Wednesday did not show how seriously I take relationship violence. I sincerely apologize. I was taught at a very young age that if I ever hit a woman, I would be kicked out of the house and never welcomed back.
“I have the same rule in my house and in the Football Program at Ohio State. Over the years, we have worked hard to educate and remind our coaches and players of the seriousness of relationship violence.”
“Let me say here and now what I should have said on Wednesday: I sincerely apologize to Courtney Smith and her children for what they have gone through.”
Meyer has been on paid leave by the university since early August and will be suspended for the first three game of the season, although he will be able to participate in some practice activities before the second and third games.
Ohio State suspended Meyer for the first three game of the football season after university leaders determined he failed to uphold the school’s standards and misrepresented what he knew about allegations made against former wide receivers coach Zach Smith in the media.
Meyer still hasn’t explained why he discussed how to delete text messages older than a year after Brett McMurphy’s bombshell report about Zach Smith was released. That’s a sticking point since after he turned his phone over to the investigators that Ohio State brought in, no text messages older than one year were on it.
Meyer’s explanation may appease some, specifically some Ohio State fans looking to find a way to move past this whole endeavor. However, there are still too many unanswered questions and questionable actions taken by Meyer and AD Gene Smith for this to be brushed away with a two-days-too-late apology. Especially when Gene Smith’s lawyer was out the same day referring to both Meyer and Smith as two great men fell on the sword for [Ohio State].”
Even on a day when Meyer is trying not to make himself a victim, someone else is out there doing it for him.