There have been numerous college football players…are coaches…over the years that were stand outs but when it came to playing in the pros, could not make the grade. Rule changes, attitudes, and even relationships all come into play.
Last week, Jacksonville Jaguars owner Shad Khan fired head coach Urban Meyer “for cause”. As a college football coach, Meyer was a standout that brought numerous winning seasons and championships to his teams; however he failed to make the transition to professional football and was fired after only 13 games.
After firing Meyer, it did not take long for the Jaguars to make some whole safe changes to how practices and game day procedures would be conducted…
There is no longer a “motivational” meeting during practice.
Nor is there an emcee giving directions via a microphone.
The “cutesy” catch phrases are gone too.
The players quickly embraced the changes. Rookie quarterback Trevor Lawrence spoke on the changes saying, “it brings a little bit of clarity to the guys in the locker room. I wouldn’t say relief, but I would say just bring some clarity and some direction moving forward.”
Currently the Jaguars have a record of 2 and 12; Lawrence added, “we really want to go and finish the season strong, and to be honest, it’s been hard to last the last week with everything going on. There’s a lot of things being stirred up by the outside, too, that didn’t help. Made things a lot worse. It’s hard to be focused and have all your attention and efforts going towards winning the game when there’s so many things going on.”
“The biggest thing that we need right now is someone that’s consistent,” Lawrence said.
Cornerback Shaquill Griffin also spoke on the changes saying, “I feel like this locker room needs a head coach that actually believes in what their players are saying, trust in that, that we can all make this work. This is not a one-man show. I feel like sometimes head coaches can come in and flip around, ‘This is my way. Let’s do it,’ and sometimes they forget about us. For any head coach who decides to take on this job or whatever the case may be, trust your teammates. We can do this together. We can win this together. This is a team effort. That would be my main message: Let’s do this together as a team.”
Prior to being let go, there was considerable controversy surrounding Meyer and his activities including an accusation of kicking former place kicker Josh Lambo back in the pre-season, an aggressive discussion with receiver Marvin Jones over criticism over one-on-one matchups, name calling his assistant coaches including calling them “losers”, and Meyer not returning from a road trip with the team and being caught displaying questionable behaviour in a club.
And prior to being told that he was being fired, Meyer left the practice facility early and never returned; leaving his assistants to run the team.
The team learned of the firing the next morning.
Offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell has been named the interim head coach for the remainder of the season.
Speaking on his new position, Bevell said, “all I can do is be me. Fortunately, I’ve been around a lot of great coaches. The thing I learned from them is to take the things from them and put them into my personality, my way, and then say, ‘OK, I just can’t pull that off.’ So I’m only going to be me, and I’m going to try to be that same person each and every day.”
feature photo credit: [[File:Phil Stacey American Idol finalist.jpg|Phil_Stacey_American_Idol_finalist]]