Attorney: Zach Smith had long, cooperative meeting with Ohio State investigators
Former Ohio State wide receivers coach Zach Smith has met with Ohio State investigators. Smith met with the investigators for “several hours” and answered all their questions, according to his attorney. Smith’s attorney relayed the news to Bill Rabinowitz of The Columbus Dispatch.
The school hired outside investigators this month to look into the football program and athletic department’s handling of domestic abuse allegations against Smith during his time as a Buckeyes assistant (2012-18). The school has placed head coach Urban Meyer on paid administrative leave during the investigation.
Smith was a graduate assistant under Meyer at Florida and was hired by Meyer as OSU’s wide receivers coach in 2012. Smith was arrested, but not charged, for domestic violence at Florida in 2009. In 2015, Smith was investigated again for domestic violence as a result of more accusations made by then-wife Courtney Smith.
The 2009 and 2015 incidents were uncovered by reporter Brett McMurphy in July, the same month it was reported that Smith had been cited for trespassing (coming on Courtney Smith’s property to drop off their kids) in May 2018. Courtney Smith filed for a restraining order on July 20, 2018. It was the restraining order that appeared to lead to Zach Smith’s firing from Ohio State prior to Big Ten Media Days.
At Big Ten Media Days, Meyer initially (forcefully) disputed the report that an incident involving Smith had occurred in 2015. After being placed on leave, Meyer revealed he was aware of the incident and had followed protocol in reporting it to his superiors (as he says he also did at Florida in 2009).
The same day Meyer released his statement, Zach Smith granted interviews to both local and national media in what some speculate was a media blitz coordinated by the two parties.
Zach Smith spent “several hours” with the committee investigating Urban Meyer today and answered every question, his attorney tells me.
— Bill Rabinowitz (@brdispatch) August 14, 2018