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Thursday, July 16, 2020

Urban Meyer

Urban Meyer ‘concerned’ about what Fair Pay to Play Act will do to college sports

Urban Meyer

The bill that was signed in California this week allowing college athletes to profit off their image and likeness could be the first real step toward changing the entire landscape of the NCAA, and Urban Meyer is among the many who are wary of it.

Meyer discussed the Fair Pay to Play Act in an appearance on “The Herd with Colin Cowherd” this week, and he said it is going to permanently change college sports. The three-time national champion is concerned the bill is going to result in more players putting themselves before their teams.

“College athletics will never be the same,” Meyer said. “And how that impacts a person going to class, and being a team first, and the whole reason why we got into, why I did get into the purity of college athletics is because you get to mold 17-, 18-, 19-year-olds into a team-first mentality. That will be gone and I’m concerned about it.”

Meyer admitted there are “very legitimate” arguments for both sides, but he said legislating that is going to be an issue when such a small fraction of players are going to get endorsement opportunities. He was also asked if allowing players to make money could negatively impact team chemistry, and he believes it will.

“I can’t imagine (it wouldn’t). If you’re coaching a guy that’s making $600K like Ezekiel Elliott, how do you convince him that he has to go to class on Tuesday, because you’re 17, 18, 19 years old?” Meyer said. “So I just think the dynamics of this thing is going to be very interesting to watch. It will change college sports forever.”

The bill in itself doesn’t seem all that problematic, but it could obviously be a gateway to far bigger issues within college athletics. We’ve already laid out some changes we think should be made to the legislation, but two other states — New York and Florida — are currently working on similar bills. SB 206, the California bill, would take effect in 2023.

Urban Meyer has funny reaction to question about taking Michigan job

Urban Meyer

Urban Meyer had a funny reaction to a question about potentially taking the Michigan Wolverines head coach job.

Meyer was on set for FOX’s college football coverage on Saturday and was asked what he thought about Michigan this year. Meyer said he thought the Wolverines would win at least nine games. He credited them for having very good players and a good coaching staff.

Then Brady Quinn asked Meyer whether he would contemplate taking the job if it ever came open.

Meyer just smiled and said “next” as he tried to wave off the question.

Where did some of the talk tying Meyer to the Michigan job come from? A sportsbook offered odds on who might be the Michigan coach at the start of next season. The odds did not have Jim Harbaugh favored to return. One name on the list of potential replacements was Meyer, which has led to a few questions this week about him taking the job.

Here’s the thing: Meyer just got done coaching at Ohio State and teaches there. There is no chance he is going to Michigan. He couldn’t stand them and it would go against everything he has represented since 2012. Frankly, the only reason the sportsbook included his name in the odds was for this exact reason: to get people talking about it, even if it’s not realistic. Job well done, because they sparked a conversation as they wanted.

H/T The Spun

Mark May: Urban Meyer clearly angling for USC job

Urban Meyer

Most people would agree that Urban Meyer has not coached his last college football game, and USC is the one spot that has continuously been mentioned with any talk of the three-time national champion making a return. College football Hall of Famer and former ESPN analyst Mark May is basically willing to guarantee Meyer ends up with the Trojans.

In an appearance on “The DA Show” on CBS Sports Radio this week, May joked that Meyer’s wife has “been measuring for drapes” in USC coach Clay Helton’s office for when Helton is inevitably pushed out in favor of Meyer. May says the fact that Meyer left ESPN for FOX Sports, which is based in Los Angeles, is hardly a coincidence.

“Once he took that job (at Fox Sports), that was the first thing that I had in my mind,” May said. “Why are you taking that job? Because you know the situation that Clay Helton is under. You know that USC is a great place to coach. You know that they’ve got a great heritage and a great history there, and you know that you can draw players there. They’ve got like four quarterbacks that can play major college football apparently.”

May pointed to the fact that Meyer used to coach at Utah and knows he can recruit on the West Coast, and the FOX studio where he currently works is around 40 minutes from USC’s campus. He also said he knows for a fact there are USC alumni who want Meyer.

“I live in the Southwest in Arizona, where a lot of USC alumni are at,” May said. “That’s all they’re clamoring about right now is getting Urban Meyer as their head coach.”

Meyer was at the LA Memorial Coliseum last week for USC’s big win over Utah, and he showed Helton some love after the game. Helton even pointed Meyer out, which seems bizarre considering everyone is talking about Meyer taking his job.

We know there is one potentially significant obstacle that could stand in the way of Meyer landing at USC, but the job makes plenty of sense for him. He has essentially admitted that he can’t stay away from coaching, and bringing the Trojans back to national prominence would be right up his alley.

Urban Meyer gave Clay Helton love for big win over Utah

Urban Meyer

Urban Meyer has been widely rumored to be a potential replacement for Clay Helton as USC’s next head football coach. Apparently the rumors haven’t frayed any relationship between the men.

Meyer was present at the LA Memorial Coliseum on Friday night working in his capacity as an analyst for FS1, which televised the game. The Trojans beat Utah 30-23 despite quarterback Kedon Slovis getting hurt on USC’s second play of the game. Matt Fink, originally the third-string QB, stepped in and threw three touchdown passes to lead the team to victory.

After the game, a few reporters mentioned that Meyer gave love to Helton. One photo even showed Meyer appearing to give Helton the “Fight On” symbol.

This just seems surprising. How can Helton be comfortable with a guy so many are talking about taking his job? Maybe he’ll take the credit wherever he can.

Helton has USC 3-1 so far this season.

Report: USC president does not want to hire Urban Meyer

Urban Meyer

Very few people believe we have seen the last of Urban Meyer coaching college football, and the one school the three-time national champion has been consistently linked to is USC. But even if Meyer is interested in that job, the feeling may not be mutual.

According to a report from Sports by Brooks, USC President Carol Folt is not in favor of hiring Meyer to replace Clay Helton. As a result, the school’s trustees are facing pressure to look elsewhere for a head football coach.

Folt just became president at USC back in March, and she is probably concerned about all of the past scandals Meyer has been involved in. USC has enough problems to deal with, as the admissions scandal that rocked the school is still playing out. The Trojans were also one of the teams involved in the FBI’s investigation into corruption within college basketball. Folt likely played a role in former athletic director Lynn Swann recently stepping down, as Swann was heavily criticized for the way he handled a lot of the issues at USC during his three-plus years there.

As Jim Harbaugh recently said, controversy seems to follow Meyer everywhere he goes. More than two dozen players were arrested during his six seasons as the head coach at Florida, and he left Ohio State in the wake of allegations that he ignored domestic violence allegations against a member of his coaching staff.

If USC’s priority is getting its football team back to national prominence, there are few arguments to be made against bringing Meyer in. But if hiring a guy with a clean reputation who won’t bring more scandal to the university is the main goal, looking elsewhere makes sense.

Urban Meyer sounds ready for a coaching return next year

Urban Meyer

Urban Meyer stepped away from coaching at Ohio State and has gone into the TV business, but questions persist about how long that will last. Meyer is one of the best college football coaches in history. He has a competitive drive matched by few others. Can he be fulfilled doing TV and teaching a class at Ohio State in the same way that he was leading a team to victory each weekend during the fall? Probably not.

During a lengthy interview with Cleveland.com’s Doug Lesmerises that was published on Thursday, Meyer expressed how difficult it is to live each day without coaching to drive him.

“I’ve been in a fight for 33 years, and now you’re not in that fight,” Meyer told Lesmerises. “So how do you fulfill that fight? And I feel that every morning. Every morning.

“It’s all about a win and a loss for 33 years. I mean every day was. Not just you’re getting ready for a game. No, no, no, no. You’re recruiting every day. You’re going against Alabama and Clemson every day, The Team Up North every day. Now you’re not. That’s the number one void, is you’re not in a fight.”

Meyer sounds like a guy who’s hungry to jump back into coaching. But he says getting into the coaching mix later this year might be too early and that 2020 could be more the timing he’s aiming for.

“I’m not there at the moment,” Meyer said of a possible return to Lesmerises. “Like you said, next year can I say that? We’ll talk again next year and we’ll see.”

There has been plenty of speculation that Meyer will end up at USC. A 2020 timeline might not fit with the Trojans if they wish to fire Clay Helton after this season and hire a new coach later this year.

Whatever the case, it seems like we can expect Meyer taking over a program late next year.

H/T Sports By Brooks

Urban Meyer brushes off latest question about potential coaching return

Urban Meyer

Urban Meyer seems to be enjoying his first season as a college football analyst for FOX, but speculation about his return to coaching is not going to stop at any point in the near future. The three-time national champion knows that, but he insists he has not given it any thought.

Andrew Marchand of the New York Post asked Meyer this week what the circumstances would have to be for him to consider a return to coaching, and Meyer said his focus is solely on fulfilling his duties with FOX.

“I’m not even there. I’m not even in that space. My focus is being the best for my employer at FOX,” Meyer said. “I’m on the phone every day with them. Not so much what we did well, but what we can do better. That’s how I’ve always have been trained. That is my focus.”

While he is obviously one of the best of all time at coaching players, Meyer said he loves working as an analyst and providing insight for fans.

“I think there are so many people out there talking about this game and it is complete theory. They think this is what is going on instead of the testimony of a mindset of a coach or an athlete,” he said. “That is why I think our show is so good.”

Meyer is only 55, and one of his former colleagues recently said he cannot see the former Ohio State and Florida leader staying away from coaching. That same colleague speculated that Meyer would only return to a program he believes has a shot at winning a national championship, and one job on the West Coast would seem to make a lot of sense if he does get the itch again.