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Former Gators now Buckeyes coach Urban Meyer suspended

Florida Football Insiders

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Patrick Gorski-USA TODAY Sports

The controversy that began with Ohio State coach Urban Meyer  not answering questions at Big Ten Media Days last month about multiple domestic violence allegations against a now former assistant of his, has resulted in three game suspension for him.

The former Gators coach, who won National titles in 2006 and 08 in Gainesville, and later with the Buckeyes in 2014, will miss the opener with Oregon State, then games with Rutgers and TCU.

This was after a ten hour Wednesday meeting of the Ohio State Board of Trustees.

It all stems from a two week independent investigation, while Meyer was placed on administrative leave, after Meyer’s receivers coach Zach Smith was investigated multiple times for domestic violence and yet, was still allowed to coach in Columbus.

The story was broken in July by college football insider Brett McMurphy and he posted a link the story on his Facebook page.

In his full detail exclusive story that includes text messages and photographic verification, Smith’s wife Courtney alleges that he began abusing her in July of 2009, while with the Gators.

Here’s is the excerpt from McMurphy’s post about the Gainesville incident:

The first time Zach Smith allegedly physically abused his wife was June 21, 2009 in Gainesville, Fla. Courtney Smith, then 24, was 8-10 weeks pregnant.

On June 20, 2009, Florida was coming off its second national title in three seasons under Meyer. Urban and his wife threw a party before their hard-working staff members left for summer break. After the party, Courtney said she went home, while Zach went out with some buddies. Courtney said Zach returned home drunk around 3 a.m. with a female co-worker, who Zach called “baby,” pleading with Courtney to let the woman spend the night with them, according to a Gainesville police report.

Courtney said the woman was Amy Nicol, who at the time was Meyer’s secretary at Florida. For the past six years Nicol has been director of internal operations for Ohio State’s football program and a member of Meyer’s staff a total of 10 seasons. According to the police report, Zach said that night Amy “was upset from breaking up with her boyfriend” and needed a place to stay.

Courtney refused and drove Amy home. Upon returning “a heated argument ensued in the upstairs bedroom. Courtney stated she tried to get Zach out of her bed, which he refused and then forcefully grabbed her,” according to the police report.

The report said Zach Smith, then 25, “picked (Courtney) up, by grabbing her T-shirt and threw her against the bedroom wall.”

It was the Smith’s one-year wedding anniversary.

Zach Smith, then in his fourth year on UF’s staff, was handcuffed and arrested for aggravated battery on a pregnant victim. Meyer said last week at Big Ten Media Days that in 2009 he and his wife Shelley “advised for counseling and wanted to help” the couple.

Smith left Gainesville in 2010 becoming an assistant at Marshall University.

However, he had been back with Meyer at Ohio State since he took the job in 2012 and up until the latest domestic violence allegations of 2015 surfaced.

That’s when Meyer was questioned at Big Ten Media Days (shown above) and claimed to have had no prior knowledge of Zach Smith’s 2015 domestic violence allegations.

Meyer then fired Smith, as a media firestorm ensued.

It was later revealed in August by media coverage that Smith also had a DUI in the Columbus area in 2013 that he never revealed to anyone. This further fueled the belief that some kind of punishment was coming Meyer’s way.

Athletic Director Gene Smith was also suspended for three weeks for failing to follow compliance rules involving the incidents and possible investigations that should have happened.

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