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Sunday, August 25, 2019

Urban Meyer

Urban Meyer, wife Shelley attend Florida game in Gators gear

Urban Meyer

Urban Meyer and wife Shelley still have positive feelings towards the Florida Gators several years later.

Meyer, who coached Florida from 2005-2010, and his wife attended Saturday’s season-opening game between the Gators and Miami Hurricanes in Orlando. Both were wearing Florida gear, according to reporters. Meyer was later shown by ESPN on TV in his Florida gear.

Meyer led the Gators to two national championships. He stepped down after the 2010 season, citing his health and a desire to spend time with his family.

Meyer returned to coaching after a year off and led Ohio State for seven seasons before stepping down after last season. Now that he has time on Saturdays and is not coaching a team, he and his wife are able to take in games and made Orlando their first stop of the season.

Meyer will be working as a TV analyst for FOX this season and has already taken a jab at Michigan in that capacity. Many still expect the 55-year-old to return to coaching at some point.

Urban Meyer takes funny jab at Michigan on FOX college football show

Urban Meyer

Urban Meyer took a funny jab at Michigan during FOX’s college football show on Saturday.

Meyer, who stepped down as Ohio State’s head coach after the season and made way for new head coach Ryan Day, is now a part of the show. One of the topics that came up was the Michigan Wolverines.

Meyer was asked: “Is this finally Michigan’s year?” The former Buckeyes coach answered bluntly, “year for what?”

The question was likely asking whether this was Michigan’s year to win the Big Ten, reach for the College Football Playoff for the first time under Jim Harbaugh, and compete for a national championship. Meyer asking for a clarification wasn’t so much about specificity so much as it was about minimizing the Wolverines’ chances of winning a championship. Urb was obviously downplaying his former rival team.

Though his response was humorous, now that Meyer is not at Ohio State, Michigan has its best chance of winning the rivalry game since Harbaugh’s been the head coach. Harbaugh has gone 0-4 against Ohio State and is 1-3 in bowl games.

Maybe Meyer gave his zinger as revenge for what Harbaugh said in July.

Colleague expects Urban Meyer to return to coaching at some point

Urban Meyer

The start of the upcoming college football season will mark the first time since 2011 that Urban Meyer is not leading a program.

Meyer retired from his job at Ohio State and has been replaced by Ryan Day, who served as an interim head coach last year while Meyer was on leave over the Zach Smith matter.

Meyer won national championships at Florida and Ohio State, and also had an undefeated season at Utah. He is among the greatest college football coaches ever, though as Jim Harbaugh noted, Meyer is involved in controversies wherever he goes.

Meyer has made the move to TV and is now an analyst for FOX’s college football programming. Will that be enough to satisfy the 55-year-old? One of his former colleagues does not think so.

“I just don’t see how he sits out the rest of his life,” a former Meyer colleague told Yahoo Sports’ Pat Forde. “That’s who he is, that’s what he does.”

That same colleague also said he believes Meyer would only return to college football at a program where he believes he could win a national championship. One specific job on the West Coast would seem to make a lot of sense if Meyer ever returns to coaching.

H/T The Spun

Urban Meyer text messages show how many programs tried to poach Buckeyes coaches

Urban Meyer

Text messages and emails relating to the Urban Meyer-Zach Smith case were released on Friday for public consumption. The documents made available include 1,840 pages of emails and 225 pages of text messages. Most of the content is redacted, but Ohio State made sure to leave content pertaining to recruiting available for consumption. Other nuggets that made the Buckeyes look good have also been left in.

One text message seems to show Urban Meyer asking whether Ohio State should leak news that Alabama tried to hire Greg Schiano, Alex Grinch and Zach Smith in early 2018 but got turned down. Meyer seems to have thought the leak would make the Buckeyes look superior to recruits.

Another message from Meyer in January 2018 shows him touting all the job offers coaches on his staff turned down from other schools. He was thanking the school for being supportive with pay raises for his staffers to keep them with the Buckeyes.

Mississippi State, Alabama and UCLA all seemed to be pretty aggressive in trying to poach coaches from Meyer’s staff. That makes sense considering Joe Moorhead and Chip Kelly were forming staffs for their first years at their respective programs.

Urban Meyer’s daughter shades Jim Harbaugh over comments

Nicki Meyer dad Urban

Urban Meyer’s daughter, Nicki, stood up for her father with some shade thrown at Jim Harbaugh on Twitter.

Harbaugh made a few headlines with some comments about Meyer on Tim Kawakami’s podcast this week. The Michigan Wolverines coach said Meyer has a great record but also is involved in controversies.

“Urban Meyer’s had a winning record. Really phenomenal record everywhere he’s been,” Harbaugh said. “But also, controversy follows everywhere he’s been.”

Harbaugh’s comments are factual, but some don’t like the source of the remarks and feel like it’s Harbaugh’s way of taking away from his 0-4 record as a head coach against the Ohio State Buckeyes. Nicki certainly thinks so.

She called Harbaugh’s remarks “a deflection strategy.”

The Meyer girls are always quick to come to Urban’s defense over social media, as we’ve seen many times in the past. Nicki’s not alone here as many other Buckeyes fans defended Meyer in response to Harbaugh.

Jim Harbaugh: Controversy follows Urban Meyer wherever he goes

Jim Harbaugh headset

Jim Harbaugh was never able to get the best of Urban Meyer when Meyer coached at Ohio State, but he clearly doesn’t feel that winning is everything when it comes to running a college football program.

In an appearance on “The TK Show” podcast with Tim Kawakami this week, Harbaugh spoke about everything Meyer was able to accomplish on the field at Ohio State. Meyer’s Buckeyes were 4-0 against Harbaugh and 7-0 overall against Michigan, but the Wolverines coach pointed out that “controversy” seemed to be a common theme with Meyer-led programs.

“Urban Meyer’s had a winning record. Really phenomenal record everywhere he’s been,” Harbaugh said. “But also, controversy follows everywhere he’s been.”

Unfortunately, that doesn’t matter for some people. Harbaugh went on to acknowledge that Michigan has always come up short since he was named head coach back in 2015.

“All you can be judged on is your record. What your record is overall. What your record is within your conference. What your record is with head-to-head matchups,” Harbaugh said, as transcribed by Kevin Harrish of Eleven Warriors. “I think you’ll find Ohio State is the only team with a better record, a better conference record than us (since I’ve been there) and has a better head-to-head matchup with us.”

While some viewed Harbaugh’s remarks as a swipe at Meyer, he was really just stating the obvious. Meyer had numerous players with character concerns during his time as the head coach at Florida, and more than two dozen players were arrested over a six-year span. He recruited and vouched for guys like Aaron Hernandez, who went on to murder multiple people.

More recently, Meyer was accused of ignoring domestic violence allegations against a member of his staff at Ohio State. That almost certainly contributed to his decision to step down following last season.

In terms of running a clean program, Harbaugh — and many other coaches — have Meyer beat. If you’re judging strictly on wins and losses, Meyer is one of the best to ever do it.

Urban Meyer watches Tim Tebow minor league baseball game

Urban Meyer

Urban Meyer took the opportunity on Friday to watch one of his best known former players compete in a baseball game.

Meyer went to Huntington Park in Columbus to watch Tim Tebow in a minor league game between the Syracuse Mets and Columbus Clippers. The former Ohio State and Florida Gators head coach tweeted photos from the game:

Tebow played for Meyer at Florida from 2006-2009, winning two national championships and going 13-1 three times. After an unsuccessful NFL career, Tebow decided to pursue a professional baseball career in 2016. He’s worked his way up to Triple-A for the Mets, though he has seemed overmatched at the plate this season. The 31-year-old entered Friday batting .131 with a hideous .376 OPS and 34 strikeouts in 26 games.

Batting ninth and playing left field, Tebow went 1-for-4 with a double and run scored against Columbus. Interestingly, Meyer used to be a pro baseball player too. He was a 13th-round pick by the Atlanta Braves in 1982 and spent two seasons in rookie ball before switching professions.

It’s nice he seems to not be holding this comment from Tebow against the former quarterback.