COLUMBUS (WCMH) – Ohio State Athletic Director Gene Smith and Head Coach Urban Meyer say former wide receivers coach Zach Smith was terminated as a result of ‘a number of different things over his tenure.’
The decision to terminate Zach Smith came after it came to light that Zach Smith’s ex-wife, Courtney Smith, filed for a restraining order.
“Urban and I had conversations throughout the day and ultimately, he came to the decision that he wanted to terminate Zach Smith, as a result of a number of different things over his tenure,” said Gene Smith. “He made that recommendation and I 100% supported it. But, it was not just because of the singular incident.”
Head Coach Urban Meyer said he was told about an upcoming court date for Zach Smith that he was not previously aware of. He said he called Zach Smith, who explained that he was cited for trespassing while dropping his children off.
“I was very disappointed it happened approximately two months prior to that,” said Meyer. “I was very upset he didn’t share that with me and I made that clear, you have to keep me exactly posted on any situation like this so I can alert Gene.”
“And that Monday I find out there’s a restraining order. And that’s when termination entered my mind,” said Meyer.
Meyer said he followed his heart and not his head when giving Zach Smith the benefit of the doubt.
“As I reflect on my loyalty to his grandfather, Earle Bruce, who was my mentor, he was like a father to me, likely impacted how I treated Zach over the years.”
Asked if he had a message for Courtney Smith, Meyer said, “Most of what I know about Zach Smith is work-related. The biggest regret is I wish I knew more. If so, I would have taken action much quicker”