Former Florida head coach Urban Meyer signed a lucrative pact Monday to take over the Ohio State football program, a move that came after Meyer spent a year as an ESPN analyst and presumably getting his fix of quality family time. Whether it was his doctor or his wife who ordered him to leave the Gators, Meyer’s manner of departure is being second guessed by the Gainsville Sun’s Pat Dooley, who despite urging Florida fans to “get over it” (“it’s not like he took a job at, oh, I don’t know, South Carolina where he planned on trying to beat you every year,”) suggests there’s some justification for resentment.
What Meyer should have said when he left Florida was, “Hey guys, I’m burned out. I’ve been doing this a long time and I just don’t have the energy to fix this program again. I need some down time.”
Instead, he said it was about his family and health. That’s why the Gator Nation is angry enough today to download the Michigan fight song as a ring tone.
Before he took the Ohio State job, Meyer expressed concerns over his legacy at Florida. He told me he was amazed at the anger expressed toward him as Florida struggled to a 6-6 season.
“All I did for six years is go into that office every day and work my tail off,” he said. “And then I go out to get a sandwich and somebody is yelling at me because they had a bunch of false start penalties.”
Meyer truly believes he left a good team behind for Will Muschamp. He told me he believes there are four offensive linemen on the current team who will play in the NFL.
I mentioned that to someone in the football office who responded, “Has he watched us play?”