Taking part in the age-old tradition of terrible football coaches landing on their feet, disgraced former Jacksonville Jaguars coach Urban Meyer is back on Fox’s Big Noon Kickoff show about eight months after a tenure that had pundits saying he should never coach or work in TV again. He was a part of the show during the 2019 and 2020 seasons after retiring from Ohio State, apparently for health issues.
Big Noon Kickoff and Big Noon Saturday will defy their founding principles and have a Thursday show in West Lafayette, Indiana for a game between Purdue and Penn State. This is when Meyer will presumably make his first TV appearance since being fired by the Jaguars.
In case you forgot the culture change that Meyer brought to Jacksonville in just 13 games, he hired a strength coach who was fired from his last job for allegations of racism, stayed in Ohio after a loss while the team flew home so he could go to his restaurant in Columbus and cozy up to a woman who was notably not his wife, called his assistant coaches losers, alienated players, said one player was getting more playing time on defense after a game in which they didn’t play a snap other than special teams, and allegedly kicked a kicker. All en route to a 2-11 record.
So I guess the big question about his first broadcast back is, they can’t just pretend like that didn’t happen, can they? I’m sure they’ll try to, but they can’t just completely ignore the elephant in the room, right? Surely they can’t just be like, “Oh, hey Urban! Didn’t see you there. Welcome back. Well anyway…”
Big Noon Kickoff is a show that’s never been scared of asking the important questions. Questions like, “What if College Gameday had all the fun taken out of it, but had a bigger desk?” This is besides the point, but look at FS1’s programming. Pretty much every show is the format of an ESPN show, just with a bigger desk.
Is Urban himself going to acknowledge his wrongdoings? Doubt it. After being fired, he blamed having the worst coaching tenure in NFL history on the fact that “society has changed.” Are the other pundits on the show going to lob him a softball that asks him about his most recent job without actually prying, like, “What did you learn in Jacksonville?” or “How is the NFL different from college?”
It’s tough to say right now, but I’m sure it’ll definitely be difficult to ignore, and I’m betting extremely awkward as well. I’m guessing it’ll be even more difficult to ignore on account of all the obscenities that are going to be hurled his way by the fans. They’re really throwing him into the deep end by having him do a BIG 10 game right away.
As a Penn State alum, I feel like I speak for just about all of us when I say we do not like that guy. It’s probably the same for Purdue fans. And in the past year, Urban has given them an entire army’s worth of ammunition they can use to make fun of him.