Meyer now Ohio State Coach, Promises Change

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Urban Meyer signed two contracts when he became Ohio State’s new football coach.

One was his contract with Ohio State, while the other was a contract with his young son and two college-aged daughters.

His son and daughters had him promise on the pink paper that he would not overdo things, he would not work too hard, and that he would take good care of himself this time.

His kids reportedly made him sign their contract before they allowed him to sign with Ohio State.

Meanwhile, his contract with Ohio State was a six-year deal that will give him about $4.4 million each year, apart from incentives and bonuses.

The coach who had won two national championships throughout a six-year stint at Florida is anticipated to bring some shine back to the football program tainted by a year’s worth of NCAA suspensions, violations, and a record of 6-6.

Health concerns as well as a decision to spend more time with his family were the reasons why the 47-year-old Meyer resigned as coach for the Gators after last season.

“I was convinced I was done coaching,” he said, referring to his decision a year ago.

Now, though, he is convinced he can effectively balance a high-pressure job with a healthy life.

He shared how he had had stress and heart problems that gave him a scare two years ago, which caused him to slow down and reflect.

He admitted that he did not feel right back then, but now he felt “fantastic.”

He also admitted to yearning to be back on the sidelines.

Meyer had grown up in Ashtabula, Ohia, some 200 miles from the Ohio State campus, and admitted that he would not have coached again this year if it was not for the position to coach at Ohio State.

He had spent his year away from coaching as an ESPN college football analyst. He also spent his time watching his two girls play volleyball on their college teams.

Jim Tressel had previously been kicked out for NCAA rule violations, apparently for not informing his superiors that players in the team possibly broke the rules by NCAA by taking cash as well as discounted or free tattoos from a party involved in a federal investigation for drug trafficking.

When Tressel was forced out, Luke Fickell served as interim coach. Fickell will now coach the Buckeyes in their bowl game, kept on as assistant to Meyer.

However, Meyer declined to comment as to what capacity that assistantship will translate.

Gene Smith, athletic director of Ohio State, described his first discussion about the coaching position with Meyer having been on the phone back in November 20, with a face-to-face meeting occurring three days afterwards. From there, things unfolded quickly.

Smith attributed his having found such a sterling candidate to luck.

Meyer and the team met on Monday prior to the news conference, and he described the team as having been enthusiastic.

The forced resignation of Tressel had crippled the football program, and the Buckeyes stood to face more sanctions from the NCAA. The team had finished their only season under the leadership of Fickell with a 40-34 defeat to Michigan on Saturday, snapping a seven-game streak of victory.

Meyer holds a record of 104-23 in his 10 seasons as head coach, with two seasons each at Bowling Green and Utah and six seasons at Florida.

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