BOOIIINNG! Meyer Returns...Sort Of

University of Weird Athletics Director Jeremy Foley must feel like he has his most high-profile head coaches on a bungee cord. A few years ago Florida Basketball Coach Billy Donovan was Orlando Magic Coach for a Weekend. This weekend, Gators Football Coach Urban Meyer made Donovan look like an NBA lifer.



The college football world learned the day after Christmas that Florida Coach Urban Meyer was resigning for health reasons. There was a sincere out-pouring of best wishes for a man who has enjoyed great success.

Not so fast.

Today, Meyer had a change of heart (if not a change of heart problems, or whatever his illness is) and instead will take an indefinite leave of absence. Understandably, considering the quick turn of events, there is no more than a vague outline of what that means. Offensive Coordinator Steve Addazio will be the interim head coach, but it is not clear what that interim entails. January recruiting? Spring practice? The 2010 season?

No one knows. Or if he (Meyer) does, he's not saying.

When Donovan left, Foley set his sights on Anthony Grant. Alabama basketball fans can be grateful for Donovan's rebound since it enabled Tide Athletics Director Mal Moore to hire Grant this year.

If Meyer returns for the 2010 season, it makes Alabama's schedule more interesting. The Gators come to Tuscaloosa on October 2, and Bama is the only team to have beaten Meyer and Florida in the past two seasons, the 32-13 romp in the SEC Championship Game this year.

One item of interest following Florida's game against Cincinnati in the Sugar Bowl this week has been: What will Meyer's offense look like without Tim Tebow?

When Meyer came into the league from Utah, there was speculation that his WAC spread would not work against Southeastern Conference defensive teams. After Mike Shula's Crimson Tide put a 31-3 pasting on the Gators in 2005, Meyer showed that he could change. Although he had particularly strong teams with Tebow, he won the first of his two national championships with the Gators without Tebow, a unique talent, as the starter.

And perhaps we'll be able to get through SEC Media Days and the pre-Gators game week of press conferences without Florida journalists asking Nick Saban about his decision to leave the Miami Dolphins.

BamaMag Top Stories