The one that got away: Former Florida coach brings national championship to Ohio State

Meyer FloridaOhio State won a national championship this week, the first ever in college football’s new playoff format.

Urban Meyer is their head coach.

Urban Meyer used to coach the University of Florida, my alma mater, where he won two more national championships.  That wasn’t all that long ago.

Interestingly enough, these two premier programs had never played each other in a football contest prior to 2006.  They now share a brief yet rivalrous history, with Florida besting Ohio State in both football and basketball national championships a few years ago and Ohio State ultimately sneaking off with Florida’s head coach.

When Meyer left Gainesville, he cited health reasons.

All of Gator Nation was concerned.  After all, he had just won two titles, doubling the feat of the beloved Heisman Trophy winner and Ol’ Ball Coach who came before him.

After a brief break, an analytical stint at ESPN, Meyer decided he wanted to coach again leaving Gator Nation betrayed and bewildered, angered and inconsolable.  For we knew it was only a matter of time before he did what he did with us with another.

Which he did.

We knew when he put his resume out there he could have his choice of any job out there.

Which he did.

He landed in Columbus.

Fast forward to Monday night.

Meyer ColumbusVarious texts hit my phone prior to the championship game, friends asking me who I thought would win the big game.  Obviously they weren’t paying attention to how I fared picking football games this year.

I told them I thought the Ducks had the talent to win that game, that they were due, but that Urban Meyer scared me.

Quickly, name Oregon’s head coach.

You can’t, can you.  So how’s a guy two years on the job going to take down one of the best coaches in the modern game?

He’s not.  Not in college football.  Not against Ohio State.  Not against Urban Meyer.

You can have every Heisman Trophy winner and Nike sponsor from here to Eugene and it won’t help matters.

And it didn’t.

So as a congratulatory, respectful yet clearly embittered Gator football fan, I ask, how did this all happen?  Championship head coaches the caliber of Urban Meyer come around very rarely.  So how did the University of Florida let him slip away?

How did we not kowtow to his every demand?  Don’t tell me it wouldn’t have been worth it.  Columbus, Ohio begs to differ.

STUDENTS_REACT_BLV_01Buckeye Nation knew what they were getting when they landed him but even they were shocked this all happened so suddenly.  They weren’t even supposed to be in this thing.  Not so soon anyway.  They’re still pinching themselves.  But that’s how Urban Meyer rolls.

And then there’s Jeremy Foley, the University of Florida’s athletic director.  I’m sure a congratulatory call was made, the two most likely maintaining a cordial relationship.  But ultimately, Foley’s the one with the egg on his face, the one that got away forever a stain on his resume.  And while Florida starts anew with the Muschamp experiment in the rear view mirror, Ohio State celebrates. They will continue to as Meyer has created another football behemoth.

Nick Saban, the only other head coach to win national championships with two different schools, is now firmly entrenched in Alabama, his LSU days gone but not forgotten.  Urban Meyer now resides comfortably in his home state, polishing more hardware for his trophy case.  His national championships in Florida are not forgotten but like the Muschamp days, they’re also in the rear view mirror.  He may soon become the only coach to win multiple titles with multiple schools.  And Columbus will once again celebrate, Gainesville, Florida not so much.

While the future is bright for both programs, one of them has the better head coach.  Somehow that happened.  We’re just not sure how to explain it.

16 thoughts on “The one that got away: Former Florida coach brings national championship to Ohio State

  1. Chris

    Jeremy Foley must be crying into his cup of coffee as he mulls over his recent hires and decision making concerning the Gators’ football program .

  2. Salsero…

    There are some unconfirmed rumors about why Meyer actually left.

    Let’s just say the women in Gainesville are a little better looking than they are in Columbus.

    But you didn’t hear that from me.

  3. Congrats to Ohio State, not sure what Jeremy Foley could have done! Gator Nation, let’s move on and hope that the future is going to bright! Urban Meyer ain’t coming back to Florida..

  4. I take exception to the comment about the women in Gainesville being better looking. …….

  5. Chris Those were arrests ? I was under the impression Foley believed them to be mere misunderstandings ? LOL,LOL,LOL !!! I mean Meyer barely took any credit for his lax approach, as those players ran roughshod all over the place , while the apathy and asinine nature of the Gators’ fans shone on through , with their pointing to championships won, rather than the continued misconduct of the players . Urban Meyer and Jeremy Foley remain perpetual @ssholes of the highest order .

    Tophatal ……

  6. Chris

    Do the Buccanneers have any regrets letting go of LeGarette Blount ? Because right about now the idiots within the front office of the organization must be crying into their cups of coffee or whatever those morons consider to be an adequate drink . GM’s of the Bucs couldn’t spot talent if they were handed a box of crayola , paper and asked to spell out the word in either cursive writing or block capital letters ……………..TALENT ,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,, something the franchise absolutely knows nothing about and how to spot it much less use it appropriately .

  7. Chump, Not sure about the real reasons for Meyer leaving Florida though when a man sites “health reasons” that leaves it wide open for interpretation. The facts are that he took a year or so off from the ‘environment’ at Florida and went home to Ohio.

    So when the Buckeyes came a calling what was he to do IF he wanted to coach again? The Buckeyes had a great program already in place and lost their last coach under the T shirts for Tattoo’s scandal so they were able to provide him with a well set table to start his second act… which as we see worked out pretty nicely for everyone north of the Mason Dixon line.

    And he also proved that not everyone in the SEC is an NFL player. Might we inquire which was the better game the thrashing of Oregon or the outright smackdown of regal Alabama? As a native Buckeye I enjoyed both but somehow the punch in the nose of Nick Saben felt event better than the plucking of the ducklings.


  8. Remember, Al, how Rays players are better in Rays uniforms than they are when they leave the franchise? A lot of that was credited to the coaching they received here.

    Yeah, how about the exact opposite happens with Buccaneers players.

  9. Tree…

    I watched the Bama game with a Buckeye buddy of mine and texted him repeatedly during the Oregon game.

    Let’s just say he was happy with both.

    And I believe, even at this very moment, still giddy.

  10. Chris

    With regard to the Rays it’s true up to a point ,but it’s also dependent upon the environment . Would you say James Shields under-achieved with the Royals last season ? In the case of David Price , the Tigers simply can’t get out of the way of their own shadow , when it comes to postseason play.

    The Knicks finally got a win ? Mayor Bill DeBlasio has asked that there be a ticker tape parade in Phil Jackson’s honor after their recent victory over the Pelicans .

    Tiger Woods loses a tooth after colliding with a cameraman, while watching Lindsey Vonn compete in alpine skiing event . Why are the press worrying over Woods losing a tooth , it’s not as if Obamacare will pay for the likely dental care ?

    The guys in Vegas , were they rubbing their hands with glee after the Patriots’ win ? Deflate Gate ? Balls weren’t pumped up to the right pressure ? Isn’t there an APP for that ? If the NFL will be conducting an investigation into this #hit , let’s just hope Robert Mueller won’t be on hand with the final report .

    Tophatal ………

  11. Chris

    With Tiger Woods having allegedly lost a couple of teeth in his entanglement with some cameramen, while watching Lindsay Vonn compete in an Alpine Skiing contest . I’m guessing he won’t have to be worried about healthcare coverage under Obama-care ?

    Deflate-Gate ? Having one’s balls not properly blown up, does have a tendency to change the shape of a game (45-7 Pats over the Colts) ? What will they come up with next in the NFL ? When that story arose, several female p#rn stars offered their services free of charge, to blow on Roger Goodell’s “nuts” , but it’s being reported he refused to take them up on the offer , as he has the NFL franchise owners already doing that ___ something they all seem so willing to do —- blowing on Goodell’s ” dice” .

    Tophatal …………..

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *