Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Urban Meyer Doesn't Understand College Football

When Urban Meyer was a commentator for ESPN he always talked about how difficult it was to combat the outside forces surrounding college football.   Whether it was players breaking curfew to hang out with friends, agents giving players improper benefits, or boosters and alumni having too much influence over personnel decisions the game has become impossible to control.  He resigned as head coach of the University of Florida in 2010 to spend more time with his family and deal some health issues (supposedly), but most people believe he was just tired of being held accountable for an environment he didn't create.   Countless arrests, accusations, and admissions of wrong doing took their toll on him.

When The Ohio State University came calling in 2011 Meyer was eager to take on the challenge of resurrecting the program.  He wanted to implement a system that had severe consequences for team violations sending a clear message to present and future players.  He would not allow the same lawless behavior that took place in Gainsville to rear its ugly head in Columbus.

The first example of his zero tolerance policy is the case of Carlos Hyde.  Hyde was the Buckeyes 2nd leading rusher last season, but got himself into some off the field trouble this summer.   Although the charges were dropped and the case dismissed Hyde will face a 3 game suspension to start the season.

Some people will applaud Meyer's efforts to maintain discipline within the program, but college football is a dirty business.  At that level there is no such thing as a"clean" program.   Meyer is fighting a battle he can't win.  Perhaps he feels guilty about the Aaron Hernandez debacle or wants to atone for past indiscretions that occurred at Florida, but punishing a young man for 3 games is a little extreme.  The punishment doesn't fit the infraction.  If Meyer continues on this foolish crusade he will find himself back in Bristol with Chris Fowler and Lee Corso sooner than later.

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