A 24-year-old woman whose dance next to NFL head coach Urban Meyer went viral has been placed under investigation by her employer.
New Horizon Media Group, a marketing company headquartered in Ohio, told USA Today it had begun an internal probe into the female employee after she was filmed dancing near the Jacksonville Jaguars head coach at Urban Chophouse in Columbus, Ohio.
Her mother said the woman had been targeted for abuse since the video was released and is afraid to leave her house.
The mother said she was praying her daughter didn’t get fired as she needs the job.
“It’s ruining her life is what it’s doing. I’m worried for her emotional status right now,” the mother told USA Today. Neither has been identified.
The Independent approached New Horizon Media and an attorney representing the company, Brian Duncan, for comment. Neither responded immediately.
Mr Duncan told USA Today the female employee was continuing to work for the company during the investigation, adding that New Horizon could not “make any determination as to her (employment) status”.
“We’ve had no prior issues with her whatsoever. She’s been a very solid asset to the company. We’re going to undertake our internal investigation to determine what, if any, impact this has on the company and we’ll proceed accordingly,” he said.
Mr Duncan said New Horizons has a business relationship with Urban Chophouse, a joint venture with Meyer, the former coach at Ohio State, and a local restaurateur.
The videos of the woman and Mr Meyer were distributed on social media after the Jaguars lost to the Bengals 24-21 Thursday night in Cincinnati.
One video showed the woman dancing suggestively near Meyer and another video showed Meyer apparently grabbing the women’s buttocks.
“I just apologised to the team and the staff for being a distraction. Just stupid. I explained everything that happened and owned it. Just stupid, shouldn’t have myself in that kind of position,” he said.
His wife of 35 years Shelley Meyer tweeted a message of support for her husband, saying “we all make mistakes - we are all sinners”.
“If you think you aren’t? Then cast the first stone.”
She later deleted her Twitter profile after also receiving abusive messages.
Their youngest daughter Gigi Meyer also took to social media to defend her father, saying the family were ready to “move on”.
“As much of our lives might seem different to everybody else's we're still human,” Ms Meyer said in an Instagram story.
“The good news is we know my dad and we know his character and he's literally the most incredible person I know in my entire life.”
On Friday, former NFL player Tim Tebow said he was “praying” for Mr Meyer.
Mr Tebow, who played under Mr Meyer at the University of Florida and the Jaguars, said he had been in touch with the head coach to suggest he apologise and learn from his actions.
“I know this has weighed so heavy on his heart and he is hurting,” Mr Tebow told ESPN.
“This is not something that I think anybody in his family takes slightly. This is a very serious situation, it’s a very disappointing situation but I also know that coach isn’t taking it lightly.”
Mr Meyer was hired by the Jacksonville Jaguars before the start of the 2021 season.
The team has suffered four straight losses this year.
Mr Meyer reportedly sought a $12million-a-year salary, but details of his contract are undisclosed.
Jacksonville Jaguars owner Shad Khan publicly reprimanded Mr Meyer for what he called the coach’s “inexcusable” behaviour”.
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