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Police: Zach Smith never arrested in 2015

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There’s a lot of confusion surrounding the Zach SmithUrban Meyer scandal that has engulfed Ohio State football at the moment. What did Meyer know, and when did he know it? Why did Meyer repeat multiple untruths at Big Ten media days if he truly had nothing to hide? What did Gene Smith say to Meyer after the allegations against Smith surfaced in 2015?

But the core of the case is Courtney Smith‘s accusations against her former husband in October of 2015, brought to light by Brett McMurphy’s explosive report last Wednesday.

“He took me and shoved me up against the wall, with his hands around my neck,” Courtney said of Zach, according to McMurphy. “Something he did very often. My (then 3-year old) daughter was clinging to my leg. It obviously registered with him what he was doing, so he took my (then 5-year old) son and left. So I called the police.”

However, according to Powell (Ohio) Chief of Police Gary Vest, Smith was never arrested for that incident.

“He was never arrested, never handcuffed, never brought in and never charged in a court of law here in 2015,” Vest told Eleven Warriors. “There were never any charges filed in the court process. So the word ‘arrest’ was simply checked on a box that shouldn’t have been checked.”

Vest did not rule out that McMurphy viewed a Powell PD report indicating Smith had been arrested in October 2015. However, Vest said, the arrest box would have been checked out of human error.

Smith was fired on July 23, and Meyer placed on administrative leave on Aug. 1. Meyer released a statement on Friday stating he followed proper university procedures, in reporting the Smith allegations up the Ohio State food chain. Further texts released Friday appeared to show Courtney Smith accusing Zach Smith of choking her on two separate occasions, claims which he did not deny in the text exchange.

Ohio State on Monday announced it expected to wrap up its ongoing investigation within a two-week window.

Ohio State announces it has halted voluntary workouts because of the results of recent COVID-19 testing

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Thanks to Ohio State, there’s yet another sign that starting the 2020 college football season on time may be a pipe dream.

As with other schools in the Big Ten, Ohio State welcomed back student-athletes, including football players, to campus for voluntary workouts last month.  Wednesday, those workouts for Buckeyes across several sports have come to a halt.

Below is a release from OSU addressing the development:

The Ohio State Department of Athletics has paused all voluntary workouts on campus following the results of its most recent COVID-19 testing of student-athletes. Seven teams’ workouts are affected by this pause: men’s and women’s basketball, field hockey, football, men’s and women’s soccer and women’s volleyball.

The university is not sharing cumulative COVID-19 information publicly as it could lead to the identification of specific individuals and compromise their medical privacy.

If a student-athlete tests positive for COVID-19, he/she will self-isolate for at least 14 days and receive daily check-ups from the Department of Athletics medical staff. Student-athletes living alone will isolate in their residence. If they have roommates, they will self-isolate in a designated room on campus.

The health and safety of our student-athletes is always our top priority.

OSU is but the latest FBS program impacted by the coronavirus pandemic.

July 3, Kansas was the latest FBS program to pause voluntary workouts after 12 players tested positive for COVID-19.  Earlier in that same week, Arizona announced that it was pausing its phased return of student-athletes to campus.  Prior to that, eight individuals connected to the Boise State football program tested positive, forcing the school to temporarily scuttle workouts.  June 20, K-State announced that it is pausing all voluntary workouts as well.  The reason?  “[A] total of 14 student-athletes have tested positive for active COVID-19 following PCR (polymerase chain reaction) testing of more than 130 student-athletes.” The weekend before that, Houston decided to put a halt to voluntary on-campus workouts after six symptomatic UH student-athletes tested positive for COVID-19.

Other programs have seen a high number of players test positive but continue workouts.  Among those are Clemson (37 players tested positive), LSU (30 players quarantined), Texas (13 confirmed positives for football players) and Texas Tech (23 positives for players/staffers).

Ivy League officially postpones 2020 football season, other fall sports

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The college football sky is falling! The college football sky is falling!

At least, that’s the case if you follow college football Twitter.

Last week, it was reported that the Ivy League would soon announce its plans for the 2020 college football season.  It has been expected that the conference would push this season to next year.  Wednesday, that officially came to fruition as the Ivy League announced that football and other fall sports have been postponed.  Football could be moved to the spring, although such an issue won’t be taken up until after the end of the fall semester.

The Ivy League does become the first Div. I conference to cancel football for this coming fall.

Below is a statement from the Ivy League Council of Presidents:

As a leadership group, we have a responsibility to make decisions that are in the best interest of the students who attend our institutions, as well as the faculty and staff who work at our schools. These decisions are extremely difficult, particularly when they impact meaningful student-athlete experiences that so many value and cherish.

With the information available to us today regarding the continued spread of the virus, we simply do not believe we can create and maintain an environment for intercollegiate athletic competition that meets our requirements for safety and acceptable levels of risk, consistent with the policies that each of our schools is adopting as part of its reopening plans this fall.

We are entrusted to create and maintain an educational environment that is guided by health and safety considerations. There can be no greater responsibility — and that is the basis for this difficult decision.

It should be noted that the Ivy League’s decision has zero impact on the 2020 FBS season, especially when it comes to the Power Five.  Is it possible that the upcoming college football season at the FBS level moves to the spring of next year?  Absolutely, especially as the number of cases in states such as California, Florida and Texas — and football programs — continue to grow.  But such a decision won’t be made because the Ivy League, and its members with combined endowments in the neighborhood of $150 billion who don’t worry about trifling things like the FCS playoffs, made it.

As one Power Five administrator put it to Brandon Marcello of 247Sports.com, “I don’t think people understand how [the Ivy League’s decision] simply doesn’t affect us.” More from Marcello’s report:

FBS conferences followed the lead of the Ivy League in mid-March, when the league was the first to cancel its postseason basketball tournament. The real-time decision in March amid a new growing threat, however, is much different in circumstance and scope than the impending decision Wednesday concerning football in the Ivy League. Power 5 commissioners have discussed the need to wait and not follow the Ivy League in meetings this week.

This tweet, though, puts everything into perspective. Financial perspective, that is.

One-time starting QB Armani Rogers enters transfer portal

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The quarterback room for UNLV football will be less experienced if/when the 2020 season kicks off.

On Twitter this week, Armani Rogers revealed that he is set to transfer out of the UNLV football program.  The quarterback confirmed that he will be entering the NCAA transfer database as a graduate.  That would allow the fifth-year senior to use his final season of eligibility at another FBS program in 2020.

“I want to thank this school and all of the coaches who gave me a chance here at UNLV,” Rogers wrote. “It was a great time I had here being with my teammates who have always [shown] me support and the fans who have also been here along the way.  This school will always have a special place in my heart.

“It was a tough decision for me, but I have decided to enter the transfer portal as a graduate.”

Now, for what’s seemingly becoming a daily disclaimer when it comes to transfers.

As we’ve stated myriad times in the past, a player can remove his name from the portal and remain at the same school. At this point, though, other programs are permitted to contact a player without receiving permission from his current football program.

NCAA bylaws also permit schools to pull a portal entrant’s scholarship at the end of the semester in which he entered it.

Rogers was a three-star member of the UNLV football Class of 2016.  The California native was rated as the No. 16 dual-threat quarterback on the 247Sports.com composite.  He was the highest-rated signee for the Rebels that cycle.

After redshirting as a true freshman, Rogers had a breakout 2017 campaign.  In being named as the Mountain West Conference Offensive Freshman of the Year, Rogers ran for 780 yards and eight touchdowns.  he also threw for 1,471 yards and another six scores.

Where Rogers always struggled, though, was accuracy.  In 350 career attempts, he completed just 174 (49.7%).  That 2017 season, Rogers started nine of the 10 games in which he played.  The past two seasons, however, injuries helped limit him to 11 games (five starts).

Rogers is the second Rebels quarterback to hit the portal this offseason.  Earlier this month, Travis Mumphrey took a dip into the database.  With the twin moves, it leaves UNLV football with just 2019 starter Kenyon Oblad and former Cal transfer Max Gilliam at the position.  Oblad threw for 2,081 yards, 18 touchdowns and nine interceptions a year ago.  Gilliam attempted 214 passes in 2018, but none this past season.

After Mark Hudspeth’s abrupt resignation, Austin Peay names interim head coach for 2020 season

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Austin Peay is officially moving forward without Mark Hudspeth on the sidelines.

Late last week, Austin Peay announced that Mark Hudspeth was stepping down as the head coach of the Governors.  According to the coach, he stepped away for unspecified family reasons.  Tuesday, the FCS school announced that Marquase Lovings will take over as the interim head coach.  And he will do so for the entire 2020 season.

The Governors’ defensive line coach, Lovings also held the title of associate head coach for the 2019 season.

“I am excited for Marquase, but more importantly I am excited for our student-athletes and our football program,” said athletic director Gerald Harrison. “After meeting with our student-athletes and coaching staff following Mark (Hudspeth)’s resignation it was clear our best chance to bring another championship to Stacheville this year was promoting Marquase.

“Marquase understands and shares my expectations for Austin Peay Football. Along with our outstanding coaching staff and dedicated Governors student-athletes, I am confident we will continue on a positive trajectory. In short, Marquase is the right leader to lead this team.”

Hudspeth’s lone season at Austin Peay was a historic one.  The 11 wins for the Governors were a school record.  Hudspeth guided the program to its first-ever appearance in the FCS playoffs.  That run to the quarterfinals included a pair of playoff wins.

“I am excited to get started and humbled by the opportunity Gerald has given me,” said Lovings. “Really love the fact I get to lead these young men and blessed to have these coaches by my side. We will coach these young men with love and respect but will still be demanding. We want Clarksville and Austin Peay to be proud of this football team both on and off the field.”