Urban Meyer Covers the Spread, Angers Randy Shannon in the Process
Many people could have been wondering what Urban Meyer was doing when he elected to kick a field goal with 25 seconds left and his Gators already up 23-3 against Miami Saturday night. Those people probably missed the bottom line: Urban Meyer was ensuring Florida would cover the spread (generally somewhere between 21-23 points in any given online sportsbook). With the only plausible argument being that he was “trying to get his kicker some work,” it was pretty obvious that Meyer was trying to please his boosters and alums who entrust thousands of dollars in the Gator program when they bet on football games. While I understood what Meyer was doing, Miami coach Randy Shannon wasn’t too pleased with the perceived act of poor sportsmanship:
Shannon didn’t mention Florida coach Urban Meyer’s name, but implied that Meyer’s decision to kick a field goal in the final seconds fired up some UM recruits who called him after the game.
“Sometimes when you do things and people see what kind of person you really are, you turn a lot of people off,” Shannon said Sunday. “Take from that what you want. It helped us more than you will ever know.”
As a Hurricanes fan (yes, prior to attending UCLA, I had a favorite college football team), I was quite pleased with Miami’s performance in the game. Sure, the final score doesn’t look pretty, but it doesn’t tell the whole story; it was a six-point game through three quarters, 9-3, and Miami’s defense looked stingy. If the offense were able to move the ball in the least bit, the Canes would have had a stronger chance. I’ll tell you, there was a lot more to be encouraged about with Miami’s performance in the game, as opposed to Florida’s. Just another example of Florida’s new legacy under Meyer, I suppose.
UPDATE: Tim Tebow chimes in to defend Urban Meyer