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Report: Urban Meyer, PSU share mutual interest
October 7, 2011 - Cory Giger
UNIVERSITY PARK -- A source close to Urban Meyer said the former Florida coach would "love" to be Penn State's next coach, and the school has expressed interest in him, according to a published report Friday.
An Internet blog called SportsRappUp, run by longtime Ohio State beat writer Jeff Rapp, features an extensive story detailing where Meyer might coach next. Meyer, by the way, will be doing color commentary for ABC during Penn State's game today against Iowa.
The story quotes an unnamed source who is described as "a close friend of Meyer's" saying the following about the coach possibly succeeding Joe Paterno at Penn State.
"Urban would love to have that job. Keep in mind, though, that he doesn't want to be known as the guy who forced out Joe Paterno. It would have to be done in the right way. I think they could appeal to JoePa's best interests and allow him to be the king-maker."
The source also told the author that Penn State officials contacted Meyer on Sept. 25 and "expressed major interest in pursuing him as head coach should Paterno, in fact, decide to retire."
Meyer met with PSU president Graham Spanier and athletic director Tim Curley, the story reveals, during a preseason visit to State College to interview linebacker Michael Mauti for ESPN.
The story also points out there is mutual interest between Meyer and Ohio State and that the coach would be interested in the Texas job if it were to become available. Meyer, 47, has deep roots in Ohio as he was born in Toledo, played his college ball at Cincinnati and began his head coaching career at Bowling Green in 2001.
Meyer led Florida to national championships in 2006 and '08 but resigned following last season to concentrate on his health and to spend more time with his family. His last game with the Gators was an Outback Bowl victory over Penn State on Jan. 1.
While many Internet blogs aren't always reliable, the author of the Urban Meyer story, Jeff Rapp, does have a lengthy journalism background and clearly did his homework on this piece. Rapp's biography on the website says he once worked for the Columbus Dispatch, that he has been covering Ohio State sports for more than 20 years and that he's a longtime member of the Football Writers Association of America.
Urban Meyer won two national titles at Florida when Tim Tebow was his quarterback.