Urban Meyer, one of college football's most accomplished coaches, abruptly announced he would retire following the Buckeyes' Rose Bowl appearance vs. Washington. Sportsbook BetDSI has released odds on whether or not Meyer will return to coaching by 2020. Let's check out the line.
Will Urban Meyer be an NFL or college coach before Sept. 1, 2020?
YES: -300 (a $300 wager wins you $100)
NO: +240 (a $100 wager wins you $240)
Meyer, who won two championships at the University of Florida in 2006 and 2008 and then another at Ohio State in 2014, is stepping down due to health concerns. He suffers from a congenital brain cyst that causes excruciating headaches. Even at the relatively young age of 54, Meyer appears resolute in his decision to hand the coaching reins over to Ryan Day despite a career .853 winning percentage.
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While many pundits believe this is a play to make an end-run for an NFL gig, why would Meyer go to this amount of subterfuge? Look at the list of college coaches that looked like sure-fire successes only to crash and burn: Nick Saban, Steve Spurrier, Dick MacPherson, Bobby Petrino, Chip Kelly. MacPherson is tops, er bottom, in winning percentage at .250 in his two seasons in New England. Spurrier was a lackluster 12-20 in Washington; Petrino was 3-10 in his one abbreviated season in Atlanta. After consecutive 10-6 campaigns in Philadelphia, Kelly went 6-9 in his final season with the Eagles before a forgettable 2-14 stint in San Francisco. Saban has the highest NFL winning percentage of the five at .469 after his two seasons in Miami.
Meyer has nothing to prove in the college ranks -- he was a winner at Bowling Green, Utah, Florida and has a phenomenal .901 winning percentage in Columbus. Coaching in Division I is a seasonal headache while coaching in the bigs is a non-stop, year-round task that breaks even the strongest of men.
Had this bet been even money, NO would have been the smart pick, but at +240 this seems too good to be true. Even if Meyer lands his dream job, regardless of where it is, it will almost certainly be in 2021 or beyond. But it seems likely that he's done for good.