Ohio State and Urban Meyer's Day of Reckoning is Near and Nobody Will Win
No matter what happens Wednesday when Ohio State University's Board of Regents meets to decide the fate of suspended Coach Urban Meyer---someone is not going to like the outcome.
And no matter the decision---it's going to be a bad look for everyone involved---from Meyer on down the line, there are few people in this mess who are going to come out of it looking like a good person or good people.
For Meyer, it's somewhat "Par for the Course". The fact he's a football coach who gets the most out of his players and staff is not in question here. He wins and these days in College Football---if you're in a "Power 5" conference that's pretty much all it is about. For many, it doesn't matter what happens off the field as long as you are winning.
For Ohio State (University, Alumni, Students and Fan Boys) it's about image, perception and to an extent---hypocrisy.
The Buckeye's are not going to come out of this looking good on any front. The assumption is Meyer will be reinstated with the penalty being the time he's already been on suspension. Which considering what happened is quite literally a slap on the wrist.
Meyer is considered by many to have a very "Holier than thou" attitude which has been on display as the seedy details about the life and lifestyle of now former Assistant Coach Zach Smith has come into the light.
For those of you catching up: Smith was arrested a few weeks ago after violating a restraining order against his ex-wife Courtney. The issue did not come to light until Courtney shared her experiences over the past few years with investigative reporter Brett McMurphy.
And that's where things took a turn for the weird. It appears--at least on the surface, Meyer and even his wife were fully aware of the Smith's marital issues which included several charges of Domestic Abuse and Assault (ed.note: Smith was never convicted of any charges, like many domestic issues--the cases ended up getting dropped).
It got worse. Last week, McMurphy reported on a rather lurid and long list of things Smith did while on the Ohio State staff--all of which were previously unreported (yes, they too were documented).
Zach Smith is alleged to have had "Sex Toys" delivered to the Ohio State football offices. He's also alleged to have had sex with a co-worker in the building too. And there were other similar issues too.
Ohio State--after McMurphy's report and documented evidence Meyer may have not been totally honest---began an investigation which ended 14-days after it started. What to do from here is the part all are waiting to hear.
Perhaps the group coming off looking the worst (outside Zach Smith) in all of this are the Ohio State "Fan Boys". I'm not referring to alums, graduates, faculty or even current students but rather the "Fans" who have fawning websites.
So many programs have hangers on and devoted "Fans" who are often the ones who push back the hardest when their beloved team is under fire. Which has been the case here as the OSU faithful have spent countless hours trying to discredit McMurphy and saying its everyone BUT Meyer's fault this happened.
Which is complete Bull Sheet....
Without McMurphy---we're not even aware of whom Zach Smith is and that folks is the crux of the problem. In this day and age of College Football programs with hyper-paranoid and micro managing Coaches who make more money than most of the professors combined, it's virtually impossible to get a fair assessment of what happens in said programs.
Without someone willing to step up and speak out---we'd never have known Zach Smith should have been fired from his job many, many years ago and that he should have sought out professional help because he clearly has a problem.
And instead of that problem being addressed---it was quite clearly overlooked.
You cannot convince me Meyer was not aware of the various things Smith was doing and had done. Like Nick Saban, Kirby Smart and others of their ilk---we have to assume he knew EVERYTHING going on in his program.
Though I will say--due to the air of secrecy surrounding Ohio State and other programs---we don't have any way of knowing. Everything that happens with these programs is a state secret.
Somehow College Coaches on Public School campuses have found ways to circumvent Sunshine Laws and open records. In some instances---they've gotten lawmakers to help them. In Georgia, the State Legislature allowed Smart and the University of Georgia to get their own custom law allowing them 90-days to respond to Open Records requests. Not because they couldn't answer them--but because they didn't want the information out there for someone to find.
I don't pretend to know what Ohio State plans on doing--though I suspect I'm right in my assumption they won't be without their Head Coach come September 1st (opening day). It won't matter that Courtney Smith suffered for years because nobody was allowed to know or find out what she's gone through. And it won't matter that Zach Smith has one heck of a mental problem that needs to be addressed.
The only thing that will matter is Ohio State and Urban Meyer will continue to win games. They will continue to compete for titles and the "Fan Boys" will be happy. They'll continue bringing in money and the University will be ok.
And the rest of us will just shake our heads and move on.
Why? Because College Football is king. It doesn't matter who's life is ruined or changed---as long as the people who help bring in the money---continue to do so...