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#pounditFriday, May 7, 2021

Urban Meyer

Report: Urban Meyer has begun assembling NFL coaching staff

Urban Meyer

There are continued indications that Urban Meyer is seriously closing in on a head coaching gig in the NFL.

According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, Meyer has already begun assembling a coaching staff for a potential NFL job. Schefter notes that the potential staff includes “some assistants from the college ranks.”

Schefter also says Meyer had another meeting with Jaguars owner Shad Khan Friday night on Khan’s boat. The two sides have had multiple meetings and have been in regular contact.

The Jaguars appear to be the clear frontrunners to land Meyer, and it’s obvious he’s listening. Meyer wouldn’t get this deep in the process if he wasn’t serious, and he definitely wouldn’t start assembling a coaching staff if he didn’t think he might need one.

A second team is said to be considering Meyer, but it seems like the momentum remains with Jacksonville right now.

Report: Urban Meyer claims to have interest from second NFL team

Urban Meyer

Urban Meyer’s interest in the Jacksonville Jaguars is not a secret at this point. However, Meyer is claiming in private to have a second interested NFL suitor.

According to Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports, Meyer has said to associates that he has interest from the Los Angeles Chargers. NFL sources are skeptical of this, however, and do not think it likely that Chargers ownership would be willing to grant Meyer the level of control he would seek.

That said, Meyer does have a relationship with the Chargers’ organization, and has attended games as a guest of the team in the past. There have also been other reports indicating that the team’s interest is real.

Meyer doesn’t really need to invent interest from other teams to force the Jaguars to bid against themselves. It’s already clear that he can return on his terms, does not need to, and can make that clear to interested teams and tell them what they have to do to convince him. That said, it still seems pretty clear that Jacksonville is the frontrunner here if he ultimately does decide to take an NFL job.

Report: Chargers have interest in Urban Meyer

Urban Meyer

Urban Meyer is said to be strongly considering taking the head coaching job with the Jaguars, but Jacksonville is not the only team that has interest in the three-time national champion.

The Los Angeles Chargers are also interested in speaking with Meyer about their head coaching vacancy, Bruce Feldman of The Athletic reports.

There’s no guarantee that Meyer will come out of retirement to make the leap to the NFL, but the Chargers job is considered one of the most appealing in football. Justin Herbert was extremely impressive in his rookie season and looks like he has the potential to be a franchise quarterback. Finding a quarterback is one of the most challenging things an NFL team has to do, so L.A. is a step ahead in that department.

The Chargers also played well down the stretch and closed out the season on four-game win streak, which is why many people were surprised they fired Anthony Lynn.

One report claims Meyer has been operating as if he will be the next coach of the Jaguars. He is apparently seeking a massive contract, however, which could complicate things.

Here’s how much money Urban Meyer reportedly wants to coach Jaguars

Urban Meyer

The Jacksonville Jaguars officially parted ways with head coach Doug Marrone on Monday, and it is hardly a secret that Urban Meyer is at the top of their wish list. There have been reports that Meyer is open to making the jump to the NFL, but apparently interested teams have to be willing to write a massive check.

Meyer is looking for a salary of $12 million per year to coach the Jaguars, Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk reports.

That sounds incredibly steep for someone with no NFL coaching experience, but Florio notes that the Carolina Panthers are paying Matt Rhule $9 million per year. Rhule’s only NFL coaching experience came when he spent a season as the New York Giants’ assistant offensive line coach in 2012. His collegiate resume obviously doesn’t compare to Meyer’s, so you’d expect Meyer to get more.

A $12 million salary would make Meyer one of the highest-paid — if not the highest-paid — coaches in the NFL.

Jaguars owner Shad Khan is desperate to build a winning franchise. If Meyer doesn’t end up in Jacksonville, we highly doubt it will be because of money.

While Meyer has already turned away interest from several top college programs, all signs point to him being more open than ever to coaching in the NFL. One report even claimed he is operating as though he will be the next coach of the Jags.

Urban Meyer expects to be next Jaguars head coach?

Urban Meyer

The Jacksonville Jaguars have not fired Doug Marrone as their head coach, but they are already considering some replacements, according to a report.

NFL Media’s Ian Rapoport reported on Saturday that the Jags have shown interest in Urban Meyer for their head coaching job. Rapoport says Meyer has even been lining up a staff and telling people in the football community that he expects to get the Jaguars job. This part of the report should probably be taken as a rumor at this point.

Rapoport says that if Meyer does not end up with the Jags, the team is expected to look into Ryan Day as a possible option. Day replaced Meyer as the head coach at Ohio State.

Jacksonville has not yet fired Marrone, who is in his fourth season as the team’s head coach. Parting ways with Marrone would be contingent upon the Jags feeling confident they can find a suitable replacement.

Meyer has not coached the last two seasons. Day replaced him at Ohio State after a scandal involving one of his staff members.

Meyer reportedly turned down the Texas Longhorns, who later hired Steve Sarkisian. Despite turning down Texas, a separate report recently said Meyer had interest in the NFL.

Urban Meyer shares just how much Dabo Swinney’s ranking motivated Ohio State

Dabo Swinney

Clemson coach Dabo Swinney didn’t think his decision to rank Ohio State No. 11 in the Coaches Poll had any impact on the Buckeyes’ mentality. It sounds like it may have played a bigger role than he thought.

Former Ohio State coach Urban Meyer revealed Friday after the Buckeyes’ 49-28 Sugar Bowl win that in speaking with current Buckeyes coach Ryan Day and his staff, it was clear that Swinney’s vote motivated the team in a big way.

“I was talking to Coach Day and some of the other coaches, and then something happened,” Meyer said on Big Ten Network. “Disrespect… when Coach Swinney came out and ranked them 11th behind Iowa State and Coastal Carolina, I don’t want to make too much of that, but you try to get your team to practice the best you can. I can tell you, I was told they had the three best practices they’d had in a long time after that.”

Ohio State probably didn’t need a ton of motivation given what happened when the two teams met in last year’s College Football Playoff. It still looks like this mattered, though. It reminded the Buckeyes what was at stake, and made the players feel that Clemson did not respect them. Swinney shrugged off the ranking as an issue after the loss, but perhaps he shouldn’t have. At the very least, it was an unnecessary choice that caused needless drama and gave Ohio State something else to prove.

Report: Urban Meyer not ruling out coaching in NFL next season

Urban Meyer

Urban Meyer could have his pick of several high-profile college head coaching jobs if he wanted to return in 2021, but he is also drawing interest at the NFL level. While that is not a surprise, it is noteworthy that Meyer is reportedly giving consideration to those inquiries.

At least two NFL teams have reached out to Meyer to gauge his interest in coaching in the league next season, ESPN’s Adam Schefter reports. Meyer did not dismiss the idea and has informed teams he will ponder the overtures over the next week.

Meyer is one of the most accomplished head coaches in college football history, but he has never coached at the NFL level. Schefter speculates that Meyer might be a logical fit for the Jacksonville Jaguars, who are in search of a new general manager and could move on from head coach Doug Marrone. Meyer, of course, has ties to Florida from the time he spent as the head coach at the University of Florida from 2005-2010.

Meyer, who has won three national championships, last coached at Ohio State in 2018. This is not the first time we have heard that NFL teams have interest in him, as he was previously linked to the Cleveland Browns due to his deep roots in Ohio.

We know of several top college programs that are eyeing Meyer, so he may have his choice of jobs at both levels. He could also choose to remain in broadcasting and take at least another year off, as he seems to be enjoying his work as an analyst for FOX Sports.

Urban Meyer calls for expanded College Football Playoff

Urban Meyer

Urban Meyer has long been an advocate of keeping the College Football Playoff field at four, but he’s had a change of heart.

On Saturday’s “Big Noon Kickoff,” Meyer admitted that he has come around on expanding the playoff. His key reason is different than that of most other expansion advocates, though: he wants to encourage more players to play in games of importance.

“I have had some really deep conversations with some of my colleagues, and the game is changing,” Meyer said. “I can’t believe I’m saying it, because I’m a traditionalist. I love the bowl games, I love the bowl experiences. But you have two different sets of groups. You have the elite group, the high-profile players and the maybe not so high-profile.

“There’s two things important to elite players: NFL, College Football Playoff. If that doesn’t happen, they’re not going to play in bowl games. I’m not saying all of them, but I know coaches are dealing with that on a day-to-day basis. I say expand the playoff — I can’t believe that came out of my mouth. I know you guys are saying more teams are going to be involved. I say more players are going to be involved.”

Whether the playoff should be expanded is a very heated talking point. Group of 5 teams feel left out of the process, and a four team field ensures that at least one Power 5 conference will be excluded every year. On the other hand, there are concerns about the academic calendar and how many games a team can be reasonably asked to play in one season.

Meyer has been critical of the current CFP format before, but he’s never favored expanding it. If colleagues in the game convinced him that it’s the right solution, one has to wonder how many rank-and-file coaches would privately agree with the former Ohio State coach.

Report: UCLA could move on from Chip Kelly, target Urban Meyer

Urban Meyer

The UCLA Bruins could make major changes to the football program this offseason, and maybe even target some big names.

According to Scott Roussel of Football Scoop, Chip Kelly’s job is not guaranteed for 2021. New UCLA athletic director Martin Jarmond, who took the job over in May, will assess all aspects of the football program, including Kelly’s position. Kelly would be due a $9 million buyout if the Bruins chose to move on from him.

If Kelly is fired, UCLA would reportedly target Urban Meyer or Chris Petersen to replace him. Jarmond has close ties to Meyer in particular, with Jarmond serving as the lead administrator for the Ohio State football program during Meyer’s time there. The two are said to be “genuine friends,” which could lead UCLA to believe they could actually lure Meyer.

Petersen, the former Washington coach, would be another candidate. Jarmond reportedly discussed the Boston College opening with Petersen when Jarmond was filling that position last winter, though the job ultimately went to Ohio State defensive coordinator Jeff Hafley.

Jarmond responded to the report on Twitter, saying there was no truth to the rumors.

Kelly has ultimately been a disappointment at UCLA, having gone just 10-20 over three seasons. Touted by some as a coup when hired, Kelly has failed to impress the fanbase and has left the door open for a possible change.

UCLA aiming big like this is bound to excite fans and boosters, but it’s hard to see this becoming a reality. However strong the friendship is between Jarmond and Meyer, it’s tough to see the former Ohio State coach taking the UCLA position when he turned down this even bigger job already. Jarmond has every right to do his due diligence, but he may well find that UCLA simply won’t be able to do better than Kelly at this point.

Urban Meyer responds to Dabo Swinney’s Ohio State comments

Urban Meyer

It’s safe to say Urban Meyer isn’t really on board with Clemson coach Dabo Swinney’s assessment of Ohio State’s playoff credentials.

Meyer responded to Swinney’s comments on Saturday’s “Big Noon Kickoff,” and he made clear that his standard for playoff selection is a bit different than the Clemson coach’s.

“There’s no doubt they’re one of the four best. Argument should stop there,” Meyer said. NFL talent all over the place, one of the best offenses in America, defense has got to get better. But there’s no question.”

It’s clear to Meyer that he thinks the job of the College Football Playoff committee is to select the four best teams in the country, and not solely based on resume. The Buckeyes have the talent, but have not played as many games as some other teams. Meyer thinks that shouldn’t matter. Dabo made clear that he disagrees, but he also has a vested interest in campaigning for his own team’s inclusion. It’s doubtful that the committee will see it his way if the Buckeyes win out.