Tuesday, May 31, 2011
It will be hard for Meyer to say no to OSU
By Edward Aschoff
It's one of his dream jobs.
He's an Ohio native.
And he'll be well rested just in time.
When Ohio State is done with the 2011 season -- and probably interim coach Luke Fickell -- the university shouldn't hesitate to place a phone call to former Florida coach Urban Meyer and try to woo him up to replace Jim Tressel.
Urban Meyer had a 65-15 record and won two national titles at Florida.
I know, he's looking to recharge and he's said in the past that he doesn't plan to return to the coaching ranks until his son Nate -- the youngest of Meyer's three children -- graduates from high school. And we still aren't sure if his health issues that played a role in him stepping away from college football last year have cleared up.
Meyer's oldest daughter Nicki also said on Twitter (using the account @Nicki_07) last month that she didn’t think her father would be taking over for The Sweater anytime soon -- if ever.
"Stop txting me abt my dad. HE IS NOT repeat NOT, GOING TO OHIO STATE. thanks," she tweeted.
Meyer, now a college football analyst for ESPN, even released a statement shortly after the news of Tressel's resignation stating that he wouldn't pursue any head-coaching jobs this fall.
“I am committed to ESPN and will not pursue any coaching opportunities this fall," Meyer said. "I have thoroughly enjoyed working with the people at ESPN this spring and remain very excited about my role with the network this fall.”
“Jim Tressel has been a respected friend and colleague for a long time. I wish Jim and his family the very best now and in the future.”
I hate to nitpick, but "this fall" leaves this case very open. And this isn't a job Meyer is just going to shrug off. He loves Ohio and this is considered a dream job for the man from Toledo, Ohio, who attended college at Cincinnati and was a graduate assistant at Ohio State from 1986-87.
The man has a lucky buckeye for crying out loud.
Oh, and there’s the itch. It's a coaching itch that won't leave a man, who "retired" at the age of 46, anytime soon. He’s won everywhere he’s been and led the Gators to two national championships and three SEC title games in his six years in Gainesville. His health might be in question (for now), but that coaching fire that made him one of the most exciting young coaches in the country is still inside him somewhere.
Don’t expect a new recruiting base to deter him either. He coached at Bowling Green, where the Midwest was his home and if he can dominate recruiting in the SEC, the Big Ten shouldn’t be an issue. OSU's recruiting grounds stretched all the way to the southeast, especially Florida, and Meyer owned that area.
As far as family is concerned, it might not have much input this time around. Meyer said in a book in 2008 that OSU, Notre Dame and Michigan were the only coaching jobs that his wife had no power to veto.
Check and mate.
We aren't sure what sanctions will or won't be handed down, but having the chance to go back home and rescue the state's team is something that should greatly entice Meyer.
At least one of his former players at Florida seems to think he'll be on OSU's sideline soon enough. Florida sophomore linebacker/defensive end Chris Martin turned to Twitter under the account of @cmart4634 to express his feelings about Meyer's statement from Monday.
"Committed to espn? Lets see if the other analyst stress him out so bad he has to spend time with his family in COLUMBUS now.. #truthhurts," Martin tweeted.
If OSU makes that phone call after next season, the truth is it will be hard for Meyer to say no.