When Urban Meyer stepped up to the podium to meet the media following a 12-hour deliberation that ended in his three-game suspension, he apologized to “Buckeye Nation.” But at no time during his presser did he ever apologize to Courtney Smith, the victim of domestic abuse by husband Zach Smith, Meyer’s former assistant coach at Ohio State.
In fact, as Meyer stood behind a podium in front of the media with his eyes glued to a piece of paper with a carefully-crafted statement some 12 hours in the making, Meyer showed no remorse. He looked miserable. And not in the way where he understood his role in this horrific tragedy. He looked like a man pissed off. A man that felt like he was the one being wronged. And it was downright disgusting.
“There were red flags,” Meyer said. “I wish I had known. I wish I had done a better job of finding out. I wish I was told more things.”
“I wish I had done more,” he continued. “I wish I had known more.”
These remarks after Meyer was made aware of the situation — and also knowing that this wasn’t the first time Zach Smith was accused of this crime. In fact, Meyer never mentioned that Zach Smith was accused for the same crime in 2009 when he worked on Meyer’s staff at the University of Florida. Not to mention Meyer’s wife was aware of the situation, and you can’t convince me that Meyer was unaware of this entire thing. Especially knowing full well what transpired in 2009. He was the enabler in this entire thing.
But apparently Meyer’s heartless, scripted apology was enough to save his job. Well, it wasn’t the apology as much as it was all of those wins that he’s brought this football program. And apparently wins speak louder than humanity, or lack thereof, for Ohio State.
But let’s be honest, did anyone actually think Ohio State would have the courage or the decency to fire Meyer? Football is too important for this program to actually hold the head coach accountable. As far as punishments go, this is a slap on the wrist. Meyer should’ve been fired. He still should be fired. Instead, he’s getting a brief timeout before he returns to a football program whose reputation has been tarnished.
This is punishment without acknowledgement, and Ohio State has embarrassed itself, its fans, and college football in the process.
Meyer might have escape this thing with his job intact, but his reputation can’t say the same. Meyer’s actions, blatant lies, and lack of human compassion has revealed his true character. And while Ohio State can look past that and retain him on their staff (how do they sleep at night?), the rest of us know the truth. When all is said and done, when we look back at Urban Meyer’s collegiate coaching career, what do you think he’ll be remembered for?