The SEC may be the most competitive conference in the nation, with the most competitive coaches. But bring all these intense coaches together at a seaside resort for the league’s annual spring meetings, and the atmosphere changes completely.
These guys all walk around talking and smiling and laughing and acting like they’re best friends.
Here’s a great example: The other day Urban Meyer and Mark Richt were standing together outside one of the meeting rooms engaged in a friendly conversation for about 10 minutes. Given their past history, this was one of the highlights (and most surreal moments) of the week.
These are the same two guys who looked like they wanted to strangle each other the past three years in Jacksonville. There was the end zone celebration orchestrated by Richt in 2007 that made Meyer’s blood boil. A year later, Richt gave Meyer the one-finger salute when Meyer was calling those late timeouts to extend the Bulldogs’ suffering on the sideline.
What in the world could they have been talking about the other day? Someone suggested maybe Richt was asking Meyer if he’d please let him win this year’s game so he can gain a little more job security.
Whatever it was, the two looked like good friends the way they were chatting each other up.
Hey, it’s the spring meetings, no one’s winning or losing, and they’re all on the beach.
“I enjoy it,” Alabama coach Nick Saban said. “It’s a good time to say hello to everybody, see everybody in a little different setting. Some of the guys you really like and you would absolutely like to have an opportunity to spend some time with when you’re not playing against each other. It’s good to see them in a little different light.”