Urban Meyer: 'I'm not going to Notre Dame. Ever.'
Published: Monday, July 13, 2009 at 11:10 a.m.
Last Modified: Monday, July 13, 2009 at 11:10 a.m.
Urban Meyer spent an hour of his Saturday at the 15th Bob Dooley Invitational, a tournament I host to benefit STOP! Children's Cancer. He also kicked off the tournament with a speech about family, the SEC and Tim Tebow.
Midway through the talk, Meyer was talking about the "nonsense" that came up again last week when a column by Paul Finebaum in the Mobile paper indicated (again) that Meyer is leaving Florida for Notre Dame after this season.
He turned to me and asked. "Is it OK to make this announcement here?"
I knew what he was going to say because he said something similar when the speculative story surfaced three weeks ago.
Meyer turned back to the golfers and said, "I'm not going to Notre Dame. Ever. I'm going to be the coach at Florida for a long time, as long as they want me."
He turned back to me and told me to put that in the paper, then to three other writers playing in the tournament and told them to print it.
Meyer only addressed the story because he was hit with it as soon as he returned from a family vacation in the Bahamas. He told me earlier in the day that his only concern is that these stories could hurt recruiting, although judging by the 15 commitments it's not hurting anything.
But you know there are coaches out there using it against Florida even though it's a make-believe story. From conversations I've had with Meyer, I can tell you that I believe him and this may well be his last job. He knows what many knowledgeable college football writers know — that he has a better job than the one in South Bend.
Notre Dame was his dream job, but that was before he got acclimated to Gainesville and got the facilities upgraded and established himself as a big-time recruiter in one of the best states to recruit.
I know that coaches often say one thing and do another. Nick Saban comes to mind. But I believe Meyer when he says he is not going to Notre Dame. Ever.
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