Nick Saban Regrets Blowing Off Urban Meyer 20 Years Ago
This story is nothing new, but since it’s never been mentioned here before it’s well worth our time. Back in 1990, Nick Saban was the head coach at Toledo. The Rockets went 9-2 under Saban and had one of the best statistical defenses in the country. Nick left Toledo to coach the Cleveland Browns under Bill Belichick the next three years, but while he was there, a young coach reached out to him.
As the story goes, Urban Meyer was an assistant at Illinois State and hoping to get hired by Saban’s staff at Toledo. Meyer called Saban’s home and spoke with his wife, Terry, who interviewed him and gave Nick a positive recommendation. Saban never followed up, calling the error “one of the biggest mistakes [he's] ever made.”
Meyer went from Illinois State to Colorado State, Notre Dame, and Bowling Green (his first head coaching gig). From there, he went to Utah and went undefeated with Alex Smith at quarterback, and then onto Florida. In his 10th season as a head coach, Meyer has an incredible 100-18 record. He’s worst season by record was 9-4 in 2007 with the Gators.
As for Saban, he never had a losing season until going 6-10 with the Dolphins in 2006, his 13th season as a head coach. I’d say both have done pretty darn well for themselves. I can’t even imagine how good a team would have been with Urb running the offense and Nick handling the defense. That’s like a coaching dream team right there.