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Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Urban Meyer’s wife strikes down rumor of Urban-Mike Vrabel fight

Mike VrabelOne of the more surprising and possibly overlooked coaching moves of the offseason was Mike Vrabel leaving Ohio State for the Houston Texans.

Vrabel, a former linebacker with the Steelers, Patriots and Chiefs, got into coaching after retiring from the NFL in 2011. He started off under former teammate Luke Fickell’s staff and was retained by Urban Meyer, who was hired that December as the program’s permanent coach.

Vrabel switched from linebackers to defensive line coach for the Buckeyes. He may have had his biggest impact in recruiting; he earned a reputation for being one of the best recruiters in the country and was instrumental in building the Buckeyes’ 2014 class, which was viewed as one of the best in the nation. So why did Vrabel, who seemed to be having so much success, leave for the Texans? Did he leave by choice because the NFL is where he wants to be, or because he was told by Meyer to look for a new job?

Bucknuts, a premium 247 Sports Ohio State board, posted that there was a verbal fight between Meyer and Vrabel following the Michigan game. According to the report, Urban was pretty ticked about the Buckeyes allowing 603 yards and 41 points to the Wolverines in a game they barely won. Meyer supposedly told Fickell he wasn’t doing a good enough job getting his players ready for their games. Vrabel didn’t like Meyer and another coach going after Fickell and supposedly went off and even got physical with Meyer. The report says that Vrabel was eventually told he would need to find a new job after the season.

That was the rumor that was going around among Buckeyes fans, and Shelley Meyer, Urban’s wife, didn’t like hearing the nonsense at all. She addressed the rumor in a couple of tweets sent on Thursday.

In other tweets, Shelley called the rumor “lies” and said Vrabel moving to the NFL was a career decision.

As I’ve said many times before, when it comes to far-fetched rumors, the best thing to do is ignore them. I wouldn’t have even known about the story if she hadn’t addressed it. But I guess when it gets big enough, sometimes you want to step out and deny it.

On Wednesday Vrabel was officially named the new linebackers coach for the Texans. He joins Bill O’Brien’s staff in Houston. O’Brien was an offensive coach with the Patriots at the end of Vrabel’s time there. The move does make some sense: if Vrabel wanted to go back to coaching linebackers and make the step up to the NFL, this was a good opportunity.

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