Almost immediately when news broke that Brian Kelly was leaving Notre Dame to be the next head coach of the LSU Tigers, there was one name that football fans immediately thought of.
It makes a lot of sense on paper, considering how things have not gone smoothly for Urban in his year with the Jacksonville Jaguars following a viral video scandal and a miserable season full of losses. Why not return to the comfortable confines of college football where he found so much success at Utah, Florida, and Ohio State, winning three national championships in the process?
However, ESPN’s Michael DiRocco reported Tuesday morning that someone close to Meyer said he had no interest in pursuing the Notre Dame gig. A lot of people assumed this “source” was Meyer himself. Urban made sure there was no doubt later on when, during a press conference, he said publicly that he was not a candidate for the Irish job or any college football job.
Full quote from Urban Meyer about Notre Dame: "I’m not a candidate. Obviously I spent 6 years of my life there, so great respect for Notre Dame, and as I do USC, UCLA, like we talked about. But I’m committed to the Jaguars and doing the best we can to turn this thing around."
— Greg Beacham (@gregbeacham) November 30, 2021
“I’m not a candidate,” Meyer said. “Obviously I spent six years of my life there, so great respect for Notre Dame, and as I do USC, UCLA, like we talked about. But I’m committed to the Jaguars and doing the best we can to turn this thing around.”
Naturally, it’s very hard to take Meyer at his word. He’s “retired” from coaching twice only to reemerge for a great situation. Plus, football coaches have developed a very strong reputation for saying one thing and then doing the opposite. We’ve seen that play out this week already.
On social media, a lot of people in the football world were skeptical of Meyer’s comments and aren’t convinced he’s in this for the long haul in Jacksonville.
— eric (@ericsburner) November 30, 2021
So with the way coaches are he will be Notre Dame coach by next week 🙂 https://t.co/VLKUFaBGlQ
— Rick Semmler (@Rick_Sports10) November 30, 2021
There is no way in the world Notre Dame would hire Urban Meyer at this point in his career. https://t.co/WGSc8HSTRY
— Ralph D. Russo (@ralphDrussoAP) November 30, 2021
— James Lipscomb, MBA (@Jimmy2Lips) November 30, 2021
Also, some people noted that Meyer mentioned UCLA, even though he hasn’t been rumored for that job. Yet.
Urban Meyer for UCLA, let's go.
On a second thought, let's not. https://t.co/9kVSCFIyzP
— Jeong Park (@JeongPark52) November 30, 2021
Given everything that Meyer has done to sully his reputation off the field, coupled with how bad the Jaguars have been, it does seem unlikely anyone will want to hire him away right now. But in the world of college football, never say never isn’t just a phrase, it’s a way of life.