Former Jacksonville Jaguars and Florida Gators head football coach Urban Meyer is back on the mend and reacclimating himself with the football community by returning to Columbus.
This comes several months after his failed attempt to lead the Jaguars for a grand total of 13 games during the 2021 NFL season before being fired. Meyer is trying to shake the stains of a losing season and a bar scandal that was the talk of social media and marred his rookie season as NFL coach.
The legendary college coach is returning to the site where he led the Buckeyes to the 2015 College Football Playoff national championship and three Big Ten championships.
He’s not returning to be a head coach, but Meyer is joining a nonprofit called THE Foundation, co-founded by his former championship-winning signal caller Cardale Jones and Brian Schottenstein, a well-known Columbus developer and OSU graduate.
In an effort to rebuild his reputation and regain the trust of the football community as it pertains to his leadership, decision-making and commitment to football, Meyer will join a board that assists student-athletes in landing more NIL (name, image and likeness) opportunities. This is new for the three-time national championship winning coach. The last time he coached on the collegiate level was in 2018, and the letters NIL were an afterthought, if even mentioned.
The organization welcomed Meyer into the fold in a tweet on Wednesday.
We proudly welcome @CoachUrbanMeyer to our board. Urban has 3 Nat'l Championships on his resume, including the '14 title w/OSU. He's recognized as one of the best recruiters in college football history. Urban looks forward to seeing future success for OSU and local charities. pic.twitter.com/UEvRf7eKxf
— The Foundation (@THEfoundation1_) March 16, 2022
Meyer Lands On His Feet Again After Questionable Exit: His Recruiting Prowess Is Unquestioned
THE Foundation is adding Meyer’s innate ability to recruit. In his 17 seasons, Meyer landed a top-five recruiting class 12 times, including top-three classes at both Florida and Ohio State where he won a combined three national championships. So having him involved in something like this is a shrewd move on Schottenstein and Jones’ part. In fact, Schottenstein had this to say to the Columbus Dispatch.
Best thing about being 14-1! https://t.co/kQlqf4rg6C
— Urban Meyer (@CoachUrbanMeyer) September 8, 2021
“There isn’t a better person to have on board than Coach Urban Meyer. It goes without saying he’s one of the greatest recruiters of student-athletes and coaches all time. I appreciate his support and friendship.”
The foundation’s goal is to support OSU student-athletes using NIL, while also promoting worthy charitable causes. Who better than Meyer to help with that initiative? He’s someone who’s familiar with how things work at Ohio State. Although Meyer may not be familiar with the new era of college football, he’ll adjust and again his recruiting acumen will help the Buckeyes in so many ways.
Meyer should be eager to explore the new NIL phenomenon. Becoming versed in the intricacies of how to use NIL deals will eventually become another recruiting weapon for Meyer to use when he re-enters the coaching realm, which is sure to happen.
Meyer Has Been Successful In Pretty Much Every Stop: Except His Last One
For his career, Meyer was 187-32 including 83-9 at Ohio State. His (.854) winning percentage is third all-time. It includes stints at Bowling Green, Utah, Florida and the aforementioned Ohio State. In 17 collegiate seasons, Meyer only had two with more than three losses.
His last coaching stint was in the NFL with Jaguars and ended in embarrassing fashion. From the jump, Meyer was in over his head and his head-scratching decisions only complicated things even more. After months of questionable decisions, bullying tactics and basically calling his coaching staff “nobodies,” Meyer was relieved of his duties prior to Week 14 of the 2021 NFL season.
Returning to Columbus is a brilliant move for the disgraced Meyer. He can now rebuild his image. His track record for winning speaks volumes and the respect for his football acumen is there despite recent transgressions.