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Mack: As Long As They Win, This Will Continue

Slap on wrist for Meyer further proves college athletics only about winning

Chris Mack
August 23, 2018 - 12:52 am

It was a dark place to be transported to, but Wednesday night did it for me, and it very well could have done it for you, too.

Watching the Ohio State University Board of Trustees announce their “suspension” of Athletic Director Gene Smith and Head Football Coach Urban Meyer reminded me all too much of the Fall of 2011 in Happy Valley.

It made me sick of college athletics and what they sometimes do to people.

Yet again, we were treated to visuals of fans protesting disciplinary action for a coach whose morals and leadership were rightly being questioned.

Suddenly, I was back in November of 2011, watching clueless students riot in downtown State College over the firing of Joe Paterno.

For what?

For football?

Is that where we’re still at – seven years post-Jerry Sandusky?

How many more times do we have to watch this play out?

How many more Penn States, Baylors, Michigan States, and now Ohio States do we have to see before we finally demand that our universities and their athletic departments put the safety of women and children above their W-L record and above the millions of dollars that these programs bring in?

Ohio State’s investigation found that Meyer has been aware of former assistant coach Zach Smith’s pattern of abuse since 2009, when, as an assistant to Meyer at the University of Florida, he allegedly slammed his pregnant wife against a wall.

Two years later, Meyer hired Smith at Ohio State after their time together at Florida.

He didn’t care.

Why should he?

Administrators don’t. Fans surely don’t.

If they did, Meyer would be out on his rear end right now, hoping and praying that someone else would lap up his blustery core values, of which he claims “Respect For Women” is one.

Respect For Women?

And you hire, continue to employ, and then cover for a person with a continued pattern of spousal abuse?

It reminds me, all too painfully, of the “Success With Honor” line that was at the heart of Paterno’s “Grand Experiment” at Penn State.

It drives home the fact, that in revenue-generating intercollegiate athletics, there is always an addendum to these ‘core values’: (As Long As We Win)

“Success With Honor (As Long As We Win)”.

“Respect For Women (As Long As We Win)”.

Ohio State and it’s fans on Wednesday night showed just how seriously they take the allegations of deception levied against Meyer and the allegations of abuse levied against Smith by his wife.

After serving just a three game suspension, it will be business as usual for Urban Meyer, Head Coach Ohio State Buckeyes (As Long As We Win).

The fans will revel in his return, probably lavishing on him a hero’s welcome on Saturday, September 22nd (as long as they win).

That will remind me, all too much, of the fall of 2011 in State College, and of the fact that here we are, after another disgusting major college athletics scandal, willing to protect the battered and abused… as long as we win.