Ohio State University football coach Urban Meyer released a statement of apology Friday evening, two days after his three-game suspension was announced. Meyer also issued a direct apology on Twitter to the ex-wife of a former Buckeye assistant coach who said the head coach failed to act when she sought help for an allegedly abusive relationship.
Meyer’s apology said he takes relationship violence seriously, and said it’s been “a real learning experience.”
Ohio State announced Wednesday that Meyer would be suspended for the first three games of the season after an independent investigation found he “did not exhibit the kind of leadership and high standards” the university expects. In a news conference that day, Meyer did not acknowledge Courtney Smith, the wife of then-assistant coach Zach Smith.
Meyer was placed on paid administrative leave after a report surfaced that he knew about allegations against Zach Smith and abuse against his wife.
In his statement, Meyer said he 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,” he said.
Meyer said he intended to “use my voice more effectively to be a part of the solution,” and he also issued a direct apology to Courtney Smith and her children.