Michigan football coach Jim Harbaugh speaks at the National Football Foundation’s Dream Team banquet in Dearborn on Thursday, Dec. 20, 2018.
Nick Baumgardner, Freep
Congratulations, Michigan football, you pushed Urban Meyer to retirement.
In a 10-minute interview with WBNS-TV in Columbus on Thursday, the retiring Ohio State football coach – who’ll lead the Buckeyes against Washington in the Rose Bowl in his final game on Jan. 1 – waxed nostalgic just after his final practice before the team heads to Pasadena.
More from Windsor: U-M fans: Don’t celebrate Urban Meyer’s departure yet
He was asked if he’s indeed leaving on his own terms.
“I looked up at the scoreboard when we beat the team up north and the way we beat them, and to be honest with you, if we didn’t win that game I’m not sure I could leave losing that game,” Meyer said. “When our team played the way we did, and I knew Coach (Ryan) Day was right there, I’m so confident in what he’s going to do here.
“I guess leaving on your own terms is unique.”
The decision seemed to come into focus for Meyer when he and his wife, Shelly, embraced on the Ohio Stadium field after that win over Michigan.
“Shelly is ‘it’ for me. She’s ‘it.’ She lives and dies this job with me, my children live and die every snap, every game. And it hasn’t been just this year, it’s been for 33 years. I know how much that win meant to her and it meant to me. Forever now we are a part of that 7-0 run against the team up north,” Meyer said.
Meyer also shared what he’ll do now that he’s retired from coaching. He’s staying in the Columbus area and he’ll work with Ohio State athletic director Gene Smith. And he’s going to teach.
But not a football class. Or a coaching class.
“Character and leadership,” Meyer said. “Lt. Col. Charles Buchanan and I are going to work together and co-teach a class. I met with him a dozen times and he’s awesome. Obviously the Fisher School of Business, we have a great relationship with them. I look forward to it.”
An interesting choice, considering the turbulent time Meyer experienced in handling the Zach Smith situation.