Urban Meyer again denies Ohio State report

By Adam Silverstein
November 23, 2011

Further publicizing a report from WKMG-TV in Orlando, FL, FOX Sports noted Wednesday morning that former Florida Gators head coach Urban Meyer has “agreed in principle” to a seven-year, $40 million deal to take the top job with the Ohio State Buckeyes beginning in the 2012 season.

The report goes on to state that Meyer is set to pull linebackers/special teams coach D.J. Durkin and strength and conditioning coach Mikey Marotti from Florida’s staff and make them defensive coordinator and director of football operations, respectively.

Meyer, however, issued another denial of even being offered the OSU job, which was released by his current employer ESPN.

“I have not been offered any job nor is there a deal in place. I plan on spending Thanksgiving with my family and will not comment on this any further,” he said.

The New York Times reports that Meyer’s denial is genuine in the sense that he has not yet accepted the job because he has a few hurdles to get overcome:

There are a handful of obstacles Meyer must clear before further engaging with Ohio State, according to a person with knowledge of the situation. That includes speaking with his entire family over Thanksgiving and further researching just how significant the N.C.A.A. sanctions against Ohio State may be.

READ: Urban Meyer to Ohio State? The timeline.


  1. bdown says:

    Do we really even care anymore? Dude jumped ship and is headed to the Big 1G–see you down the road Urban….all he did was find an easier road because the SEC almost killed him

  2. chigator says:

    So much for Urban having any good faith towards UF. Although Urban might be a good guy, this is not much different than when Saban took the Alabama job. I guess this is what we as college football fans have to look forward to (saying one thing and doing another). It just feels like he left UF a mess, which I would have been okay with if his reason for leaving was genuine. I mean Foley even offered him a year or two off the job, but he declined. And now after nine months off the job he claims he has figured it all out and learned how to balance work and family? It just makes him sound super dense and UF like suckers.

  3. GatorNsc says:

    If all of this is true, i hope Meyer falls flat on his face up there. I appreciate all he did while in G-ville, but all of that crap he fed us when he left was all lies.

  4. Cline says:

    Please take durkin

  5. Bob Beatty says:

    Would not be happy if this were true. Not one bit. Loved Meyer when he was at Florida and wish he’d never stepped down. But leaving one pressure cooker for “family reasons” for another after a one year break is just, words can’t describe how incredulous I am.

    I hear you Chigator about similarities to the Saban deal w/LSU & Bama…the big difference being Saban’s failure in the NFL. As much as I despise Saban, I can’t fault him for leaving for the NFL (the BIG STAGE), though I understand why LSU fans are upset he moves to a huge rival.

  6. Mr2Bits says:

    Really excited he might be taking Durking and Marotti as both of them have clearly been failing this program.

  7. Joe says:

    Director of football operations. Sounds like a way around the NCAA limit on asst coaches

  8. npgator says:

    Mariotti = undersized linemen on both sides of the ball. Durkin = horrible special teams! Bye bye!

  9. g8ter27 says:

    Well if he does go he will likely do great based on past coaches lying about whether they are taking another job or leaving. Lets see, Saban and Petrino come to mind….and they aren’t doing too bad at the moment. I agree with those whose say take the coaches to OSU. Our special teams have been terrible and it appears we might…just might be getting a bit out-muscled on the line these last couple of years.

  10. Andy says:

    Agree with all of the above. Lies lies lies. Thanks for leaving the team in the crapper Urby.

    You have to admit, Urban is a hell of a coach. Look at what he did at Bowling Green and Utah. He’ll probably add a couple more trophies to the mantle.

  11. Luke says:

    I’d be surprised if anyone on this board has ever taken more than three months off work, much less a year (voluntarily, without looking for another job). If so, you would certainly understand that you can reconnect with your family, deal with your health, and be charged up to get back to work.

    I had the privilege of taking almost 6 months off work after I turned 30 to spend time with my family and “charge the batteries” and it was amazing, but it also helped me get back to work and have a better year this year than I ever have (from a sales point of view and a personal enjoyment standpoint).

    Why not let the man do what he feels best for himself an his family without feeling offended? Ohio State is a top 5 job, it’s near his hometown (which I’d bet at least 80% of you out there live within 100 miles of where you grew up), and it’s a great job, with a lot of history, and a chance to compete for national titles every year. Most people change jobs every 3-4 years, so we definitely got a fair shake out of the deal. Urban might be the only reason I’d root for Ohio in the Big 10…

    He seemed to have lost his edge last year and I’m much more worried about Muschamp getting this program together and proving that he’s head coach material. As much as I wished Urban would’ve been a long time coach at UF, dynasties don’t last long anymore and coaches move. What’s done is done and there’s no point looking back. I just hope we meet him and his new squad in a BCS Championship game within the next 3 years!

    Go gators!

    • Ken (CA) says:

      you really shouldn’t make broad assumptions like that. I for one took 7 years off, and the only reason I went back was the economy turned bad (I didn’t have quite UM stash of cash to fall back upon), I have also lived all over the country and am 3000 miles from where I grew up.

      That said, I did feel at the time that UM was heartfelt and honest in his exiting the program, and I appreciate the things he did for the program (and at least he isn’t considering coaching again at an in-division school like another ex-coach).

      I always expected him to coach again, but I never thought it would be before his daughter graduated GIT and his other children finish school in Gainesville. That was always his priority, he said…

      On the flip side, if he does wait another 2-3 years, will another premiere job be open in that time frame? There are only a couple of schools i could imagine him coaching at and the answer is probably no.

      I guess you could go back to all of the public statements he made at Utah about “being the coach there for a long time” and “being there for the forseeable future” etc… in cluding one by Shelley, that were all made after he had already accepted the Florida job but before it was public, just rumor.

      I am betting this is 99.9% done deal at this point, and he clearly isn’t showing no interest.

      • Ken (CA) says:

        and the only reason not 100% is the fact that probably waiting to see how harsh the OSU sanctions will be. I am betting that after the UM game OSU will make the official announcement that he will be their next coach. Very disappointed if that is the case, though, because that would show how disengenuous he was when he left.

  12. wingtee says:

    Bottom line Meyer did not t like Florida for several reasons:
    Fans are asswhipes
    Players are entitled
    Hated the climate

    • John S. says:

      Right, maybe he was scared of Tebow and he’s success, and that without the “production” guys on staff (Mullen/Strong) he could no longer have success. Unfortunately this taints my view of him. Maybe he was scared of Saban.

  13. Ken (CA) says:

    For those of you so quick to give Marotti the boot, he is widely respected and generally considered the best or one of the best strength coaches in the country. 6 months ago everyone was thrilled that if anyone was kept, he was. As far as undersized linemen, he is playing lots of true freshman and sophomores against redshirted juniors and seniors. They aren’t going to have the size at this point in their careers no matter what Marotti does. Strength and size can only be built up so fast….legally…

  14. HardToKillGator says:

    UM has an agent who can negotiate with anyone out there without UM talking to them or agreeing to a proposal. I believe his agent is giving him plausible deniability allowing Urb’s to say I ain’t talked to OSU. Also, what is he going to discuss with his family over Thanksgiving? The economy?

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