Fact or Fiction: Right time to include Meyer in Ring of Honor at UF?

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FILE - In this Nov. 1, 2008, file photo, Florida quarterback Tim Tebow, left, and coach Urban Meyer celebrate in the fourth quarter against Georgia during an NCAA college football game in Jacksonville, Fla. Florida beat Georgia 49-10, the season after Georgia defeated Florida 42-30. (AP Photo/Stephen Morton, File)
There are truths and untruths in the world of sports. And there are also opinions that are worth discussing. You may agree or disagree. Just do it with decorum. So begins this occasional feature as Pat Dooley and Robbie Andreu of the Gainesville Sun embrace the debate:
Item No. 1
Urban Meyer will be inducted into the UF Ring of Honor in 2020.
Andreu: When it comes to Urban Meyer, Gator fans need to take a giant chill pill. He took over a UF program that was a mess and won a national championship in his second year. He repeated that in his fourth. So, Meyer is more than deserving to be in the Ring of Honor. And that’s where he’s going to end up. It’s just a matter of when. Meyer has clearly stayed connected to UF and many of those who work there, and he still considers himself a Gator. If the UAA wasn’t concerned about a negative fan reaction, Meyer would have gone in a few years ago. The fans need to embrace Meyer and welcome him back to the family. That will come, but not in 2020. FICTION.
Dooley: There has certainly been a move in that direction by Florida’s athletic department and this might be the perfect year to do it. After all, the biggest concern is that it will be embarrassing if Meyer is booed because there are a lot of Gator fans who are still angry at the way he left. But one would think there is a lot of compassion for what we are all dealing with. There is no question he is as qualified as the other six who are in the Ring. FACT.
Item No. 2
Georgia transfer Brenton Cox will have a season similar to Jon Greenard’s 2019 season.
Andreu: The feedback from veteran players was that Cox was tearing it up on the practice field on the scout team last fall. Unblockable, they said. Unbelievable pass-rushing moves and quickness, they said. He’s going to be a stud, they said. After a year off, this former five-star recruit is going to be ready to light it up when he gets back in pads. He’s definitely going to have the chance to be a major contributor at that rush-end position. But everyone has to remember, he’s still a young player, with only one season of college ball under his belt. Greenard, on the other hand, was a fifth-year senior who had already proven himself before he got here. Cox will be good, but not Greenard good at this early stage of his college career. FICTION.
Dooley: The opportunity will be there, but I think Greenard was a really special player who knew 2019 was his last shot. Greenard, despite injuries, had a great season and I think his experience helped. Todd Grantham has a track record of getting the most out of the position, but it will be a bit of a learning process for Cox. Will he get to 10 sacks, 16 tackles for a loss, two TDs and countless plays at maximum effort? FICTION.
Item No. 3
The Swamp will play host to an NFL game this year.
Andreu: When that possibility came up a few weeks ago, it sounded good and got all of us football-hungry folks extremely fired up. But I just don’t see it happening, especially if the Gators get the green light to play their full season in 2020. I know the fans would like to see NFL games in The Swamp, but what a logistical nightmare it would be getting the stadium ready for games on back-to-back days. FICTION.
Dooley: I think with the moves to open states gradually and the concession that some NFL games will be played without fans may knock that out of the water. But there is no telling what could happen in the next 3½ months. Florida was just letting the governor know it was interested as a way to recoup some of the lost revenue. And with a brand new baseball stadium available, I could see that happening if Major League Baseball comes to its senses and has a short season. Football games are going to be difficult enough to handle for Gator games. FICTION.

5 COMMENTS

  1. Urban Meyer won two national championships for us and put his heart and soul into the program until it wore him out. I was at a Gator Gathering in Ft. Pierce the year he was hired, and witnessed first hand his intensity the leadership that made his players want to run through walls for him. Accept the fact that he was physically and mentally drained and welcome him back into the fold with open arms.

  2. I dunno. If we just look at on-field performance, sure I guess. I look at the guys in RN and the only sure fire slam dunk addition is Timmy. Marshall and Youngblood are from before my time but look at the other three guys, Spurrier, Wuerffel and Smith. They all bleed Orange and Blue. Timmy does too. Urban … not so much. Great coach, genius even but the state of Florida Football when he departed just leaves a sour taste. I won’t boo, but I won’t cheer either.

  3. Today being Memorial Day, I’ve come up with an analogy for all Gators to consider. To me, the Ring of Honor is to University of Florida Gators what the Congressional Medal of Honor is to the United States of America.

    Has the USA ever awarded its Congressional Medal of Honor to a pure mercenary? That would be someone who had no prior allegiance to America before joining our military and whose brilliant military exploits for America were accomplished strictly for fame and fortune, before moving on to doing a similar thing for a competing nation? I don’t know, but that wouldn’t seem right to me!

    Steve Spurrier moved on to the NFL and South Carolina in his coaching career. But, SOS was the FIRST Gator Heisman Trophy winner as a player and bleeds orange and blue to this day! His lifelong allegiance to the University of Florida and body of work as a Gator player and coach is more than deserving of membership in the Gator Ring of Honor. Urban Meyer’s body of work as a Gator coach is more impressive than SOS’s, but he has no legitimate allegiance to the University of Florida and never really did.

    If “the” Ohio State University has a Ring of Honor, maybe they should consider putting Urban Meyer on it. At least he was born in Ohio and claims to have carried a buckeye in his pocket for “good luck” when he won BOTH Gator NC’s, before moving on to winning one for Ohio State. He has a more legitimate claim to their Ring of Honor than to ours.