In a nearly 50 minute long conversation with WOSU radio host, Ann Fisher, University President Michael Drake responded to questions regarding the investigation with Urban Meyer, Zach Smith, and the university.
The investigation is projected to finish up on Sunday, August 19—two weeks after the announcement of the investigation. Here’s some quotes of what President Drake had to say during the interview.
WOSU: What are the potential outcomes of this investigation? What are you expecting? Not per say, but what are the worlds of possibilities?
President Drake: “Well, broadly, we can imagine the world of possibility—what were thinking of—is doing a really good investigation. I’m pleased to, in consultation with the board, bring in a really outstanding team. There’s a great deal of interest in this investigation, so we wanted to make sure we had really good information. And there’s time pressure, we wanted to make sure we have that information as quickly as possible.”
WOSU: About two weeks?
“About two weeks, that’s the projected goal. The investigation is underway as we speak and it will be finished when it’s finished. The most important thing is to get good information that we can make the right decisions going forward. Where we are now is that it’s underway, we brought in Mary Jo White from New York with a law firm that had done large scale, significant investigations over many, many years. She’s an experience prosecutor and a partner at a major national law firm. They’re handling the investigation and I understand things are moving of pace and so stay tuned.”
Around the 3:35 mark in the interview, Fisher asked Drake about Meyer’s response to the media during the Big Ten Media Day where he lied to reporters about what he knew during the 2015 incident with Zach Smith. Days after Big Ten Media Day and shortly after the university led investigation had begun, Urban released a statement on Twitter explaining that he knew about the 2015 incident and reported it as he is obligated to do per his contract.
WOSU: Urban Meyer admitted he lied to the media on Media Day about what he knew about the domestic violence allegations against Zach Smith and I’m wondering: is lying to the media a fireable offense?
President Drake: “Well, what we are doing now is an investigation as you know—”
WOSU: Well, he’s admitted already that he didn’t say/tell the truth that day.
President Drake: “So what we are doing is an investigation to try and find out exactly what happened, why, what the context was, et cetera. I’m going to wait to know those things before I make conclusions. I’ve been doing my best possible job to keep an open mind. And as I said, stay tuned.”
Fisher carried on with her questions about the investigation and shifted the focus on to Athletic Director Gene Smith.
WOSU: He [Urban] has said that he told Gene Smith, the athletic director of Ohio State, back in 2015 and some people are saying, “Hey, he did his job.” So I guess, why isn’t Gene Smith being investigated as apart of this?”
President Drake: “We’ll say that the team is investigating this particular set of circumstances and I don’t know all the questions they’re asking or how or what they are going about and so I’m waiting until they come forward with information and then we’ll try to use that information to make the best decision we can. And I don’t know where it’s going or what they’re coming out with.”
After this question, Fisher moves into different topics including the Richard Strauss investigation and OSU’s statistics with graduating students. You can check out the full interview here.