Urban Meyer defends himself and former assistant denies abuse

Urban Meyer defends himself and former assistant denies abuse

Urban Meyer defends himself and former assistant denies abuse

Meyer's statement marks his first comments since being placed on administrative leave as Ohio State opens an independent investigation into his handling accusations of domestic violence made by Smith's ex-wife, Courtney.

At issue are domestic abuse allegations leveled against former OSU assistant wide receivers coach Zach Smith, whose ex-wife Courtney accused of engaging in a years-long pattern of physical abuse leading up to, and on the night of, their separation in October 2015.

Urban Meyer fired Zach Smith on July 23 and admitted to knowing of a dispute between the couple back in 2009, but denied during Big Ten media days of any knowledge of other incidents. In addition, he also acknowledged his mistake in how he approaches questions during the Big Ten Conference's recent media day.

"I have always followed proper reporting protocols and procedure when I have learned of an incident involving a student-athlete, coach or member of our staff by elevating the issue to the proper channels", Meyer said. When asked about photos that Courtney shared with reporter Brett McMurphy, Smith told 105.7 The Zone, "There are times when things got out of hand and I had to restrain her, or defensively move out of the situation - leave and sleep at my office". "I take that responsibility very seriously and any suggestion to the contrary is simply false". If I hit her, I wouldn't even come to work.

When that happens, there will be more understanding as to what will happen going forward in multiple aspects of the Ohio State football program, the university, and multiple individuals. University officials said Thursday that reporters would be barred from football practices until at least next week and a six-member committee will head up the school's investigation into the matter.

ESPN has reached out to Courtney Smith's attorney regarding the texts.

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Zach replied, "I know!" and "I'm so so sorry!" Murphy then asks "You never hit her?" and Smith says "Never hit her".

Ohio State's policy on sexual misconduct says anyone who supervises faculty, staff, students or volunteers has a duty to report "when they receive a disclosure of sexual misconduct or become aware of information that would lead a reasonable person to believe that sexual misconduct may have occurred involving anyone covered under this policy".

Meyer also didn't go through the timeline of how he was alerted to a domestic issue in 2015 and who he reported it to, which will be central to the university's decision as to whether he remains coach. Coming from someone who knows.

On his reaction to Meyer's official statement from Friday: "That was as heartfelt, honest, true a statement as I've ever heard. I would know, it's over".

"If [Urban] loses his job, it's flat wrong", Zach Smith said on SportsCenter. "And this is a guy who fired me".

While the statement from Meyer allows us to see his side of the story, there are still a bunch of questions and not so many answers about this entire situation. Meyer said he plans to address the issue publicly "at the appropriate time", but has refrained "out of respect for the ongoing inquiry".

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