The burning desire to win is something everyone possesses in the coaching profession, some a bit more intense than others.
That’s why Urban Meyer‘s recent admission that it would’ve been tough to walk away from football had Ohio State lost to Michigan last month should come as no surprise.
The Buckeyes’ emphatic 62-39 win over their arch rival was their seventh straight overall, etching Meyer’s name alongside perfection in the storied series. The victory detonated Michigan’s national championship hopes and led to Ohio State’s second straight Big Ten Championship the following week, the perfect setting for Meyer to go out on top.
During an interview with 10TV, Meyer revealed he may have extended his tenure in Columbus as head coach had Michigan won the game.
“Well, I looked up at the scoreboard when we beat The Team Up North, and the way we beat them …” Meyer said. “To be honest with you, if we didn’t win that game, I’m not sure I could leave losing that game.”
Meyer’s next step at the university will be co-teaching a course on leadership while assisting Ryan Day with anything he may need during a new transition. Meyer was asked this week if returning to coaching has crossed his mind since announcing his retirement on Dec. 4.
“I haven’t even thought about it,” Meyer said. “I’m hoping, I said this before, that I fall in love with something. I fell in love with student-athletes, so I’m hoping I’m going to have an administrative role here. I’m hoping I get knee deep in that and that fills that void. Because there’s a void, a huge void. It’s certainly not going to be taking walks and playing golf and that’s it, see you later. That will not happen.”
During his retirement announcement, a noticeably emotional Meyer said he’d miss daily interaction with players the most, something he has enjoyed throughout his illustrious career as a head coach. While teaching a class will give Meyer something different to focus on, it’s not all he has planned in his retirement.
Spending time with family is another key reason he is walking away and also why he wants to remain in Columbus and close to the program. Meyer’s son-in-law, Corey Dennis, is a graduate assistant at Ohio State and Meyer and his wife Shelley will be getting a second grandson soon.
“I’m going to travel with my wife,” Meyer said. “We’ve not done much of that. I have another grandson coming, so that’s two grandchildren. I’m going to completely devote myself to them.”
Meyer, 54, is 82-9 during his OSU career as head coach and led the Buckeyes to the 2014 national championship during the first season of the College Football Playoff. Meyer also captured three Big Ten championships (2014, ’16, ’18) and compiled a 7-0 record against rival Michigan.
Meyer was hired at Ohio State prior to the 2012 season, and promptly went 12-0 during his first season in Columbus. The Buckeyes were ineligible for postseason play that year due to NCAA violations that occurred before Meyer’s arrival.