Sunday, December 27, 2009

A brief retirement

I guess we won't have to worry about a coaching search:
After announcing Saturday night that he would step down after coaching Florida in the Sugar Bowl on New Year's Day, Urban Meyer said Sunday that he will instead take an indefinite leave of absence following the bowl game. Offensive coordinator Steve Addazio will take over the Gators and will coach until Meyer is ready to return.
The question now, of course, is when Meyer will be back. Will he be coaching again by the start of fall practice? Will he be gone for two or three years? Nobody knows for sure, although Meyer said he believes he'll be on the sidelines for the start of next season. An interesting question came up at Sunday's press conference along the lines of "How do you plan to adjust your coaching so you don't have the same health problems you've been concerned about?" Meyer hesitated a bit and then said, "That's something I'll have to figure out." It doesn't sound like he knows exactly what the future holds or what he'll do differently, and if (for whatever reason) his absence lingers on, it'll be an odd cloud hanging over Steve Addazio's every move.

Speaking of Addazio, his ascension to the top job hasn't exactly inspired a lot of confidence in Florida fans. It has inspired some quality comments at EDSBS, though, such as this one ...
Addazzio as the interim HC?? By god, what did Brantley do to deserve this? Eat the entrails of living babies?
... and this one ...
At least when Addazzio only pulls off 7 wins next season there will be no one else to blame, and he will go back to coaching the offensive line like he is supposed to.
Yikes. Florida's offense obviously was pretty bad this year with Addazio at the nominal helm, but one thing I've learned from years of following college football is that being a great/poor coordinator does not necessarily make a guy a great/poor head coach. There are a lot of different qualities involved, and if Meyer feels that Addazio is the guy to steer the ship in his absence, that should be enough for Gator fans to show a little faith -- especially when you consider that he might never even coach Florida in a game.

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