Urban’s Renewal

December11/ 2010

It’s not hard to compose a column about Urban Meyer’s decision to resign as HFC at Florida.  It is a requirement for what I do.  The difficulty is deciding on a clever title playing off his name.  92% of pseudo clever pundits will choose Urban’s Legend.  That leaves me and 8% with Urban’s Renewal.  Now to the easy part ….

Urban Meyer is not the first Big Time Coach to walk away in his prime.  In his case, this isn’t even the first time “a Big Time Coach named Urban Meyer walked away”.  Urban having done so for 24 hours 11 months ago.

Urban joins Bobby Cremins, Vic Bubas, Dave Gavett, Digger Phelps, Bill Cowher and others I can’t recall.  Hey …. most of you didn’t recall Bubas and Gavett so go easy on the criticism.

I’m not sure what Frank Luntz’ national focus group stats are saying about America’s pulse relative to Urban’s decision.  It being Big Time college football, every hot-bloodied partisan of any school other than GatorNation is deriding him because that’s what hot-bloodied rival partisans do.  Within GatorNation, he is also getting “the business” from a faction of their board monkeys since he had a quite mediocre season this year ….. and hasn’t won a national championship in the past two years ….. “good riddance to the no-count loser!” 

Personally I think it’s a quite sensible thing to do.  The profession of “Big Time Coach at a high-profile school (or pro franchise)” is truly (cue one of my favorite metaphors) “playing solitaire with a deck of 51 …. you can’t win!”.

BREAKING NEWS:  Florida names Texas DefCoor Will Muschamp to replace Urban.  “The Swamp” can be a very unforgiving place to be a rookie head coach …. just ask Ron Zook.  Mack Brown’s staff now has more holes than a hobo’s underwear ….

Urban won TWO National Championships in seven seasons at Florida and went 13-1 just last season.  Last season his ONE loss was to Nick Saban’s Crimson Tide.  Urban caught holy hell for that one loss.  Urban makes $4,000,000.  That is a lot of money.  There are 5-6 Big Time Coaches who make REALLY Big Bucks.

Mack Brown is one of’em.  You don’t wanna be Mack Brown these days.  Either Gene Chizik or Chip Kelly will win a ring this season.  Neither of them are in the Really Big Buck category Yet.  One will be by February 1.  All the other Really Big Buck coaches are catching holy hell these days.  Their margin of error is zero.  Win a National Championship or you’re a bum.  PERIOD.

Make $4,000,000 and put your life in the hands of Marvin Austin’s tweets or Cam Newton’s daddy?

Ol’ Roy understands ….. Ol’ Roy makes A LOTTA $$$.  Roy Two Rings has two rings …. but K has a handful, plus a brand new one plus a good shot at another one.  So life for Ol’ Roy is reclusive involving lots of Tums and Maalox.  To paraphrase The Blue Messiah hisownself ….. “How much Maalox does one coach need to chug?”

Urban says he wants quality time with his wife and children.  Cynical board monkeys snarl and swear at such lily-livered sentimentality.  The concept of meaningful inter-personal relationships is alien to the goggle-eyed crowd.  When one’s self-worth is invested vicariously 110% in  a scoreboard …. and one-side of that scoreboard is in the hands of some sappy galoot wishing he was watching his daughter’s high school volleyball game ….. GOOD GRIEF !!!

I’m betting a certain square-jawed fellow in North Raleigh read about Urban’s decision and smiled …. and maybe has contacted him to say “Bro, I understand.”  Bill Cowher got to spend his wife’s final year with her as both got to attend their daughter’s sports events.  Bill Cowher has “his ring” and a pretty good gig one-day–a-week as a studio analyst.  Maybe Cowher takes any NFL head job he wants …. or maybe not.

Maybe Jon Gruden takes any job Bill Cowher turns down.  Maybe he doesn’t.

I’m not sure why Vic Bubas walked out of Cameron Indoor in his “prime” while Duke was a juggernaut in the late 60s.  Commissioner of The Sun Belt Conference doesn’t exactly impress chicks in airport waiting lounges.  Same with Dave Gavett at Providence with Ernie No-D and Marvin Barnes.  Same with Digger in South Bend.

Cremins was a Top Ten fixture at GaTech, routinely swiping NYC’s top point guards away from Dean, when Bobby said by-by to the big time.  He stayed in coaching but at lowly College of Charleston where expectations are minimal.  Imagine

Tootin’ a whistle at Lees-McRae

Roy bailing at UNC to toot a whistle at Catawba or Lees McRae?  Probably sounds pretty good to Ol’ Roy these days.

There’s a saying that middle-aged hard-charging ladder climbers eventually run across …… “No man on his death bed ever wished he had spent more time at the office.”

I don’t have any national championship rings  (Does a 1970 Orange Bowl / Big 8 Champ ring count? ) and I’m many many millions of book sales away from Big Bucks but Blondie and I restructured our lives 23 years ago to be a family with Kid.  I saw every Tae Kwon Do graduation ceremony …. every play ….. every basketball and volleyball game (although Kid was just “a reserve”) …… et al.

If I’d kept my nose to a corporate grindstone, Kid would have a much larger trust fund someday.  But not as much of her Daddy.  Life is all about what happens while you are making plans …..

Right Urban?

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