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Thursday, June 4, 2020

Urban Meyer apologizes to Courtney Smith in statement

Urban Meyer

Urban Meyer heard the critics and has responded.

Meyer on Friday released a statement in which he apologized to Courtney Smith and her family for what they have gone through.

“My words and demeanor on Wednesday did not show how seriously I take relationship violence,” Meyer said in a statement. “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. I understand my lack of more action in this situation has raised concerns about this commitment. I once again apologize for this, and I extend my empathy to all women, men and families who are affected by relationship violence. This has been a real learning experience for me. I fully intend to use my voice more effectively to be a part of the solution.

“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.”

This is exactly what many people were waiting to hear from the coach. Though his defenders will question why Meyer should be punished for unproven allegations against Zach Smith, detractors will point out that he holds an extremely important leadership position and needs to set a proper example. That means taking domestic violence allegations seriously. His previous decision not to apologize to Courtney when given the opportunity on Wednesday made many think he did not care about her or view her as a victim. Ohio State’s internal investigation made it clear that Urban and wife Shelley did not believe Courtney’s allegations.

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