What were mere rumors for several weeks has now become a reality as the Jaguars are set to hire former Florida Gators and Ohio State Buckeyes head coach Urban Meyer, according to a report from Ian Rapoport and Tom Pelissero of NFL Network. Meyer last coached college football in 2018, and has been retired for two years as a Fox Sports analyst.
At the end of the 2020 regular season, the Jaguars “mutually parted ways” with three-year head coach Doug Marrone as the team finished with an abysmal record of 1-15, the worst in franchise history. The Jaguars would lose their final 15 games of the season, winning in Week 1 against the Indianapolis Colts.
Meyer, 56, has never coached in the NFL before, however, he has had long - and successful - stints with the Gators (2005-10) and, most recently, with the Ohio State Buckeyes (2012-18). He currently boasts a 187-32 record as a head coach in college football with Florida, Ohio State, Utah and Bowling Green.
With the Gators, Meyer won two BCS National Championships (2006 and 2008). Citing his family and personal health, Meyer would retire from coaching for two years following the 2010 season at Florida. In 2012, Meyer returned to coaching, bringing a national title to Ohio State in 2014.
The Jaguars are slated to pick first-overall in the 2021 NFL Draft and all signs have pointed to the selection being former Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence, one of the best quarterbacks in college football history. Lawrence reached the College Football Playoffs in all three years at Clemson, winning the National Championship once as a freshman.
With Meyer in the fold, the concentration will now center around the team’s general manager hire. Currently, the Jaguars have interim general manager Trent Baalke installed. He was the team’s Director of Player Personnel prior to the firing of former Jaguars GM Dave Caldwell earlier this season.
The Jaguars will hope Meyer can bring a winning culture back to Jacksonville. Successful in all of his landing spots, along with the fact that the Jaguars boast one of the most attractive jobs in the NFL currently due to their draft status and cap space, there is little reason to believe success isn’t on the way.