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Urban Meyer controversy began during his Gators coaching days

Florida Football Insiders



Patrick Gorski-USA TODAY Sports

Thursday morning came a bombshell revelation story that Ohio State football coach Urban Meyer, who led them to the College Football Playoff National Championship in 2014, is alleged to have known that one of his assistant coaches was a serial domestic abuser. Yet, he did nothing about it.

Further, we now find out that the former two-time National Champion Gators coach had that knowledge all the way back to 2009. And, that’s when that the same assistant, receivers coach Zach Smith, had assaulted his girlfriend at the time-now wife, while in Gainesville.

College football breaking news insider Brett McMurphy posted a link the story on his Facebook page and updated it throughout Wednesday:

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 last week.

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.

Meyer is obviously under fire himself and may be in jeopardy of some type of punishment from Ohio State. He could even possibly be suspended or fired, if it’s confirmed that he’s been lying or covering up what he knew about Zach Smith’s arrests and allegations for domestic violence.

One national sports columnist, Dan Wolken of USA Today, called for that Wednesday afternoon.

Late Wednesday afternoon, Meyer was placed on paid administrative leave by Ohio State, as the investigation continues.

This may be the first step in a further in season suspension or perhaps termination by the school.

Co-offensive coordinator Ryan Day has been named the interim head coach.

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