Kristina Miller has lived through the abuse and survived.
She is certainly not an apologist for domestic abuse.
As the mother of a five-star recruit committed to Ohio State, Kristina Miller has gotten to know Urban Meyer.
She doesn’t see the coach of the Buckeyes as excusing domestic violence, either.
The three-game suspension handed down to Meyer on Wednesday has obviously drawn no shortage of attention to how the Buckeyes have chosen to handle a difficult situation. The three-week long investigation into Meyer’s role in a potential coverup of domestic violence allegations against former wide receivers coach Zach Smith found little to implicate Ohio State of that crime. What was found, though, was that Meyer provided shelter and questionable loyalty to Smith during a series of transgressions throughout his Ohio State career, any number of which could have justifiably resulted in his termination over the last few years.
As the shockwaves from Meyer’s punishment have resonated across the country, a number of Ohio State commitments and their parents have begun to voice their support of Meyer. But perhaps nobody has been more vocal than Miller.
Almost any defense of Meyer has predictably drawn some criticism from fans of schools around the nation who have responded by leveling accusations of victim-shaming Zach Smith’s ex-wife, Courtney Smith. But having endured the abuse herself and understanding fully what it’s like to be on the other side of this ugly issue, Miller is using her voice to speak out and making it clear that she wouldn’t be sending her son to Ohio State if there was any doubt about Meyer condoning violence.
Miller wanted to make sure that her words weren’t parsed on the matter and forwarded her thoughts, perspective and experience to Lettermen Row.
As the mother of a highly-touted prospect, Kristina Miller has heard all kinds of nasty comments during the recruiting process and is clearly strong enough to handle it.
Her message is not to shame victims of domestic violence, but to underscore that as woman who has lived it, she would never entrust her son to Urban Meyer if she had any doubt about his character. It’s also dangerous to rush to judgment or label people as domestic abusers or enablers until all the facts are established.
Ohio State failed in many ways during Wednesday night’s press conference, and it certainly could have emphasized that there is never an excuse for domestic violence. There’s also no reason to refuse to hear both sides of a story, and there might not be anybody who understands that better than Kristina Miller.