Ohio State University head football coach, Urban Meyer, will step down after the Rose Bowl game on New Year’s Day. OSU plans on promoting current offensive coordinator, Ryan Day, as the Buckeyes permanent replacement for Meyer.
Urban Meyer and the Ohio State football program is scheduled to announce the official news during a press conference later today. Meyer’s successor, Ryan Day, acted as the head coach for the Buckeyes earlier this season while Meyer was serving a three game suspension.
Most college football fans, upon hearing this news, are probably shocked the 54-year old is calling it quits.
However, if you look past Meyer’s on field success and focus on the complexities of Urban’s life, all signs pointed in the direction of retirement. Especially after this Buckeyes season, dealing with a laundry list of dramatic off the field issues ranging anywhere from, health problems to suspension to investigations.
Ultimately, Urban’s deteriorating health status became the number one reason for the retirement, enduring painful and aggressive headaches as a result of a congenital arachnoid cyst in his brain. Meyer has already endured a brain surgery in 2014 to help drain the cyst. Unfortunately the cyst has returned in spurts the past two seasons and, at times, limited him from bringing the wanted intensity to all aspects of his job.
Although Urbans health has a lot to do with his decision, it doesn’t remain his only deciding factor. Meyer’s career has been extremely successful, but it also consists of multiple dramatic events, scandals and investigations that some believe may stain his legacy.
Urban Meyer was suspended for the first three games of this past season in the wake of an investigation into allegations of domestic violence by one of Meyer’s assistant coaches, Zach Smith.
Urban received immense amounts of backlash, when reports surfaced about the way he handled a wildly troubled employee. Additionally, people questioned how much, and for how long, Urban knew about the situation between the couple.
Some of Urban’s other dramatic run-ins during his career include: Stepping down at Florida in December 2009, returning days later, and stepping down again in 2010. He returned to coaching after a year spent working on his health, doing television work for ESPN, and spending time with his family.
Over Meyer’s career, he has been criticized for the lack character he alone brings to the table, but also the character and the lack of responsibility displayed by his players. While serving as head coach for the Florida Gators, Meyer recruited Aaron Hernandez.
While Hernandez was playing for the Gators, he was questioned by Gainesville police in connection to a September 2007 shooting in which five shots were fired into a car, wounding both passengers. Hernandez fit one witness’ description of the shooter, but was never charged. Meyer played Hernandez in 40 out of 41 games. Hernandez was later found guilty, and charged with the Murder of Odin Lloyd.
Although Urban Myer has had some bumps in the road during his career, it is impossible not to acknowledge his success he displayed on the football field. Meyer’s career helped spark a new generation on the offensive side of the ball, implementing all new facets of the spread offense.
Urban won two BCS titles at Florida, where he coached Tim Tebow to the Heisman Trophy and dueled with Nick Saban and Les Miles to help fuel the rise of the power house SEC conference.
Meyer, an Ohio native, will end his career in Columbus as an Ohio State Buckeye. Some of his Buckeye accolades include: a 2014 national title, a record of 82-9 over seven seasons, a winning percentage just over 90 percent, a 7-0 record against rival Michigan, and a 54-4 record in regular season Big Ten play.
Urban Meyer’s last game will be the Rose Bowl on January 1st, where Ohio State will take on Washington. Meyer enters his last game with an overall record of 186-32.