COLUMBUS — When Urban Meyer was hired following the 2011 college football season, the new Ohio State head football coach made one thing very clear to his team — hit a woman, and you will be sent packing.
It was considered his first commandment.
On Monday, the university announced that star tailback Carlos Hyde may have committed the unforgivable sin, as he was named to a Columbus police report stating he allegedly assaulted a female at an area establishment.
Meyer didn't waste any time in announcing that his senior runner — who rushed for 970 yards and a team-high 16 touchdowns on the ground — has been suspended from all football team activities pending the outcome of the student code of conduct and criminal investigations.
"I have a clear set of core values in place that members of this football program
are constantly reminded of and are expected to honor," Meyer said in a statement issued by the university Monday. "There are also expectations with regard to behavior. I expect our players to conduct themselves responsibly and appropriately and they will be held accountable for their actions."
Meyer also announced that all-American cornerback, Bradley Roby — who is facing separate legal issues after a drama-filled weekend in Bloomington (Ind.) — will not be attending the Big Ten Media Days as a speaker in Chicago.
According to the university, Roby may face discipline following an investigation.
Going with the theme of discipline on Monday, Meyer also handed down punishment for two freshman — tight end Marcus Baugh and defensive end Tim Gardner.
Baugh was suspended from all summer activities, as well as the season opener against Buffalo, for his arrest over the weekend for underage drinking.
Gardner has been dismissed from the team after being charged by Columbus police for obstruction of justice.
OSU Director of Athletics Gene Smith stated on Monday that "I applaud Coach Meyer for his immediate actions."
The discipline of Roby, and the possible dismissal of Hyde, are major blows for the Buckeyes' program which will surely be ranked in the top three to begin the 2013 season, and are considered by most to be a favorite to reach the national championship game in Pasadena this January.
After the past few seasons of off-the-field adversity surrounding the football team, look for Meyer to rule these proceedings with an iron fist.
Definitely to be continued ...