Urban Meyer placed on paid administrative leave amid investigation
Urban Meyer has been placed on paid administrative leave by Ohio State amid an investigation into his knowledge of a situation involving a since-fired member of his coaching staff.
Ohio State University issued a statement on Wednesday about the matter, saying Ryan Day will serve as acting head coach in the meantime.
“The university is conducting an investigation into these allegations. During the inquiry, Urban Meyer will be on paid administrative leave,” the school said. “Ryan Day will serve as acting head football coach during the investigation. We are focused on supporting our players and on getting to the truth as expeditiously as possible.”
Meyer said he agreed with the decision and hopes for a resolution of the case.
“[Athletic director Gene Smith] and I agree that being on leave during this inquiry will facilitate its completion. This allows the team to conduct training camp with minimal distraction. I eagerly look forward to the resolution of this matter,” said Meyer in a statement.
Last week, Meyer fired wide receivers coach Zach Smith, who was on Meyer’s staff both at Florida and Ohio State. Smith had been arrested multiple times for alleged D.V. committed against his now-ex-wife. His arrests spanned both of his stints at Florida and Ohio State.
Meyer said last week that he was unaware of an unresolved 2015 alleged assault case involving Smith against his ex-wife.
However, new information reported on Wednesday suggests that Meyer was lying and that he did have knowledge. A report from Brett McMurphy says that Smith’s ex-wife sent text messages, including photos of the alleged violence, to the wives of the other Ohio State coaches. Meyer’s wife Shelley was among those to receive the messages and expressed deep concern over text message, allegedly saying that Smith “scares” her. In an alleged text message, Shelley told Smith’s ex-wife that she would talk to Urban about the matter.
Either Shelley never brought up the matter with her husband as she said she would, or Urban was lying when he said he had no knowledge of the situation and allegations Smith was facing.