Urban Meyer’s contract could provide firing grounds; OSU closes media availability to coaches, students

Head coach Urban Meyer of the Ohio State Buckeyes looks on as they play the Wisconsin Badgers during the second half of the the Big Ten Championship game at Lucas Oil Stadium on December 2, 2017 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)

COLUMBUS, Ohio– A contract extension given to Ohio State coach Urban Meyer in March could provide grounds for the university to fire him over the handling of a longtime assistant accused of domestic violence.

The extension signed March 27 added a requirement to Meyer’s contract that he immediately report any “known violations” of Ohio State’s sexual misconduct policy. The contract lists “intimate violence and stalking” as violations.

Meyer is on administrative leave while Ohio State investigates claims that Meyer’s wife knew about 2015 allegations of abuse against former Buckeyes assistant Zach Smith, who was fired last week.

Meyer previously told reporters last week that he was never told anything about the incident that resulted in injuries to Smith’s ex-wife, Courtney.

The extension also increased Meyer’s salary to $7.6 million for 2018, an $800,000 raise over what he was scheduled to earn.

Smith was set to make $340,000 in 2018 before his firing, a $40,000 increase from his salary for the 2017 season.

Meanwhile, Jerry Emig, associate director of Ohio State Athetics Communications, released the following statement saying football practices will be closed to the media starting Friday:

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