Rowdy reptiles may take on a whole new meaning this week in Gainesville as Urban Meyer is taking the Ohio State coaching job.
Florida just finished off a 6-6 regular season, it’s first without Urban Meyer. If you think 6-6 sounds bad, pull back the drapes and it only looks worse. The wins were against FAU (1-11), UAB (3-9), Tennessee (5-7), Kentucky (5-7), Vanderbilt (6-6), and Furman (6-5 in I-AA). Vandy is the only bowl eligible team the Gators beat all year. Gators fans would be correct to partly hold Urban Meyer responsible for this indefensible disaster of a season.
Florida was harmed in the recruiting process the last two seasons because of Meyer’s “Favreian” approach to coaching. In, out, in, out. Not only did some talent get redirected elsewhere, clearly he didn’t keep the shelves stocked with talent for Will Muschamp. The Gators slide began last season, and only got worse this season. And who knows if Florida has even reached rock bottom yet?
On top of being bitter over this season, even if a Gators fan who was logical, and understanding of his plight of missing family and wanting time away to deal with health issues, can now be angry that the reasons for stepping aside just 10 months ago, have apparently been resolved while he was spending more time away from his family while working for ESPN as a studio and game analyst.
For those that said he’d be back, you were right. The whole “family,” “stress,” and “health” excuses look very phony today. Was he just getting out of a bad situation? Perhaps, I don’t have the answer to that. I know many Gators and non-Gators fans firmly believe that to be the case. Once his NFL talent began leaving early, he knew the weaknesses of his team better than anyone, and jumped ship. If you believe it, the news that he is getting back into coaching less than a year after he made it sound like he was done for life only empowers your point.
After all, Meyer said this regarding coming back to coach the Gators at the Sugar Bowl press conference:
Q. Can you just talk about the sheer emotion of walking away from a school that’s driven you, and then the emotion when you decided to let the door be cracked for a return?
COACH URBAN MEYER: A very emotional day, not knowing that crack is still there. I don’t know that door is still there. But what I didn’t want to have happen, and I made this clear to Jeremy, if I am able to go coach, I want to coach at one place, the University of Florida. It would be a travesty, it would be ridiculous to all of a sudden come back and get the feeling back, get the health back, feel good again and then all of a sudden go throw some other colors on my shirt and go coach. I don’t want to do that. I have too much love for this University and these players and for what we’ve built.
People don’t forget what you say, and it’s not hard to confirm things nowadays with the internet. Travesty. Ridiculous. Ouch.
Whatever Urban Meyer’s reasons for leaving the Gators, legit or not, he does have the right to lead his life however he sees fit. Nick Saban, Bobby Petrino, and others can come and go as they please. You may not like it. You may scoff, be angry, or be bitter, but he can do what he wants. Meyer can take the Ohio State job. He just must know that some people that loved him, may not love him as much anymore. I wouldn’t feel the need to burn down anything over another grown man’s decision to do what he wants, but I would feel burned.
Tuck’s Top Twelve
1. LSU- One of the better regular season efforts in recent memory.
2. Oklahoma State- I had them #2 last week because of their resume, which is better than any other 1-loss teams. Still is. Keeping it at just 1-loss will not be easy against a Sooners team that has beaten them 8 straight years.
3. Alabama- Top 25 wins: 2 (OSU: 4) Top 50 wins: 5 (OSU: 6) Wins over bowl eligible teams: 7 (OSU: 8 ) Plus the Cowboys would get another check-mark in every column if they beat Oklahoma.
4. Oklahoma- There comes a point at the end of the season, when a 1-loss difference between teams can be ignored I think if you start comparing who they’ve played.
5. Oregon- Ditto. Plus they hammered Stanford.
6. Stanford- Great season for the Cardinal, but they can’t be in front of the Pac-12 champ (eventual) who they lost to. Plus, I am not punishing the Ducks for losing to LSU while Stanford beats Duke.
7. Kansas State- Big XII checks out as the deepest and best conference in the country this year. SEC has the best upper echelon teams, but the bottom 6 of that conference was pathetic this year.
8. USC- The Trojans would be a tough team to deal with if college football had a playoff as they’ve gotten better and better as the year has gone along. Of course, they’d also be ineligible for that.
9. Virginia Tech- Hokies are a good football team, but finding good wins on their schedule isn’t easy.
10. Boise State- Broncos in the same boat as the Hokies.
11. Houston- Fantastic regular season, but so hard to rank a team that doesn’t have even one decent win on it’s resume.
12. Michigan State- From this point until 19 or so, its a bunch of pretty good teams that if you put in a tournament I am not sure who would win. For the record, I have it Wisconsin, Arkansas, South Carolina, Georgia, Michigan, Baylor, TCU.
STIFF-ARMING TROPHY RACE:
This year’s Heisman race is a lot like #12-19 in the rankings. A bunch of solid, pretty good candidates, that could could throw in a hat and not be surprised, upset, or disappointed with the winner. Because I must…
1. QB Kellen Moore, Boise State
2. QB Robert Griffin III, Baylor
3. RB Montee Ball, Wisconsin
4. QB Colin Klein, Kansas State
5. RB Trent Richardson, Alabama
6. QB Andrew Luck, Stanford
7. WR Justin Blackmon, Oklahoma State
8. QB Case Keenum, Houston
The Bowl Games
Let’s start with the BCS, which will fill out after this coming weekend.
The champions of selected conferences are contractually committed to certain bowls, unless they are No. 1 or No. 2. (ACC: Orange; Big Ten: Rose; Big 12: Fiesta; Pac-12: Rose; SEC: Sugar). If a Bowl loses a host team to the title game, then the bowl gets first choice at a replacement team. The rest of the selection order for 2012 is as follows: Fiesta, Sugar, Orange.
BCS Title Game: LSU vs. Oklahoma State/Alabama…ironically, the Cowboys biggest opponent this weekend is Oklahoma, it’s Georgia. A Dawgs win would probably move Alabama to #1 in the polls, but only drop LSU to #2 keeping them in the title game. A Cowboys win and a Tigers win would set up a decimal point finish on Sunday night between the Tide and Cowboys, who voters would probably move up from #5 to #2 or #3.
Sugar Bowl: Georgia/Alabama/Oklahoma State/Michigan/Houston/TCU/West Virginia…2 of the 5 will play in this game. The Dawgs if they win the SEC, the Tide if they don’t make the title game, the Cowboys if they lose to Oklahoma or Michigan if LSU and Oklahoma State both win, and Houston as their likely opponent, but possibly the Mountaineers if they win the Big East or TCU if Houston loses to Southern Miss.
Orange Bowl: Clemson/Virginia Tech vs. Louisville/West Virginia/Houston/TCU…ACC champ is easy, and then the short-end of the straw as the final pick.
Rose Bowl: Oregon/UCLA vs. Wisconsin/Michigan State…easiest one yet. Losers get nothing, or in the case of UCLA, absolutely nothing unless the NCAA grants them a waiver to go bowling as a 6-7 team
Fiesta Bowl: Oklahoma State/Oklahoma/Kansas State vs. Stanford…The Cardinal are all but locked in as the first natural selection, but if the Cowboys win the Big XII, Kansas State could be the first choice as a replacement.
That was easy, right?