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VOL. 133 | NO. 169 | Monday, August 27, 2018

Urban Meyer Showed His Low Standards and It’s Not Exactly a Surprise

By Don Wade

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In the wake of the Urban Meyer – what shall we call it? – circus, fiasco, scandal, clichéd business as usual at a big-time football factory – there were a couple of interesting takes.

First, to reset: Ohio State suspended its national championship-winning football coach for the first three games of the season. His former assistant coach Zach Smith was fired much too late, based on the OSU Summary of Findings that showed Meyer was aware of the complaints of abuse by Courtney Smith, the assistant’s ex-wife, going back to a 2015-16 law enforcement investigation.

In his most recent press conference, Meyer apologized to “Buckeye Nation” multiple times but did not mention Courtney Smith by name.

Ohio State University suspended football coach Urban Meyer on Aug. 22 for three games for mishandling domestic violence accusations, punishing one of the sport's most prominent leaders for keeping an assistant on staff for several years after the coach's wife accused him of abuse. (AP Photo/Paul Vernon)


Ian O’Connor, a senior writer at ESPN, said of Meyer: “Rarely does a public figure so clearly declare exactly who he is and what he stands for, or doesn’t stand for.”

Meanwhile, Paul Daugherty, columnist at Cincinnati.com, says Meyer’s transgressions aren’t enough to make him don his “indignancy suit.” It’s not that Daugherty doesn’t recognize the severity of domestic abuse or Meyer’s role in all that did and didn’t happen.

It’s just that there is much hypocrisy in big-time college football – as common as a pre-game walk-through – that the columnist can’t muster the ire, at least not when compared to the Penn State tragedy perpetuated by Jerry Sandusky and ignored by Joe Paterno, among others.

Daugherty’s bottom line on Meyer?

“What did you expect? Those who held up Urban Meyer as a paragon of virtue were as naïve as those currently ripping him and (Ohio State) for what they see as too light a punishment. Meyer is a football coach, a very good football coach.

“He’s like almost every other football coach. A bit full of himself, a bit full of it. Able to charm like a politician and arm-twist like a CEO. Able to craft an image pleasing to his followers, able to dissemble when that image falls short of reality.”

Tickets for Oct. 4 Memphis Madness on sale soon

The first Memphis Madness under first-year Tigers basketball coach Penny Hardaway will be on Oct. 4 at FedExForum, with tickets going on sale Sept. 5.

University of Memphis students will be admitted free, but the rest of the public can choose between paying $5 for Terrace Level seats or $10 for Club and Plaza Level seats. Gates will open at 6 p.m.

The women’s basketball team also will be part of Memphis Madness festivities.

M Club hosting all-sports reunion

The University of Memphis M Club will host an All-Sports Reunion around the football season opener Friday, Aug. 31-Saturday Sept. 1. Former Tigers from all sports, including cheer and pom, athletic training and student managers, are invited to the All-Sports Reunion.

The weekend kicks off Friday with the M Club golf tournament at Windyke Country Club (8535 Winchester Road). To sign up a foursome, call Bob Winn at 901-678-4878.

All former football players in town for the reunion weekend are invited to participate in the team's Victory Walk at Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium at 5 p.m. Friday. The Victory Walk is held the night before each Tiger game, home and away, and is open only to current and former players.

A reception will be held for all former Tigers at the Penny Hardaway Hall of Fame Aug. 31 from 6-8 p.m. Former Tigers can also pick up their tickets for Saturday's football game at the Friday night reception. Active M-Club members get two free tickets for the game, with additional tickets available for $5 each.

The reunion weekend will move to Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium on Sept. 1. At 4 p.m. the M Club Hospitality will open in the Pipkin Building. Kickoff for the team's season opener against Mercer is set for 6 p.m.

For additional information on joining the M Club, the official letterman's club of the U of M, contact Bob Winn at 901-678-4878. The cost is $50 per year and includes the reunion weekend, hospitality for all home football and select home basketball games and the ability to vote on the M Club Hall of Fame ballot.

An M Club membership also offers discounts on football and basketball season tickets. The organization also works with the Tiger PAWS program on interview preparation programs and job fairs and looks to connect current Tigers with former Tigers in the community.

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