Controversial political activist releases undercover videos of former Florida players discussing injuries, verbal abuse in weight room under Urban Meyer
Project Veritas, a website run by controversial conservative political activist James O’Keefe, has published “undercover” interviews with former Florida players describing injuries and verbal abuse in the workout program under Urban Meyer.
The video, titled “An Unfair Game: Urban Meyer, a History of Abuse,” is accompanied by a release with a Marco Bruno byline. The release includes transcriptions of quotes from former UF players Xavier Nixon, William Green, Gideon Ajagbe and Josh Evans.
Multiple players describe a “Valentine’s Day Massacre” workout in which former Florida WR Omarius Hines’ quads “exploded” while using the leg press, sending Hines to the hospital.
Evans mentions Hines being pushed by coaches, but also described teammates encouraging more reps.
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“We had a guy on a leg press machine… Guy had probably about six plates on each side of the leg press. So [the coach] blew the whistle as he goin’, and the whole team kinda came over there like go, pushing, pushing, pushing. He got to about 38 [reps,] blew, the sides of his quads just erupted, boom. Legs, screaming, had to take him to the hospital,” Evans says.
Ajabe feels he was mocked and not properly taken care of by the staff when he had a sever shoulder infection. He attributes his depression to mockery and lack of support from Meyer’s staff.
It’s important to note that the grueling nature of workouts under Meyer has never been a secret. Project Veritas also does not hide the fact that the video was released to seemingly piggy-back the negative press surrounding Meyer. The video makes a reference to Meyer being in the news “yesterday.”
O’Keefe is best known for politically-motivated pieces targeting Planned Parenthood, ACORN and NPR. Critics have accused O’Keefe of selective and deceptive editing in multiple videos. The video on Meyer is embedded below.
The release states that the Meyer video is the first in a series targeting college football and the NFL.
Update: One former Florida player is unhappy with his inclusion in the video.
Suffice to say, he was furious and is speaking with a professional about his options, assumed at least some of the other players shown in the video were as well. #Gators
— OnlyGators.com 🐊 Florida Gators news (@onlygators) August 2, 2018