Urban Meyer doesn’t like it when people find fault with his Florida Gators. Two BCS championships in three years might prove that Urban is doing something right, but there’s always room for improvement.
(Meyer mad at Matthews?)
However, Coach Meyer prefers not to hear such things. And he really gets angry when he hears it from ex-Gator football players. It seems Urban believes if you’re going to criticize the athletes playing for the ol’ alma mater, then you might as well give up your lifetime Gatorship.
Mike Bianchi of the ORLANDO SENTINEL reports that Meyer spoke at a gathering for the Central Florida Gator Club last Saturday. During his chat, Urban laid a little something out about former Florida athletes who would dare question any moves or mention any missteps by the current crop of Gators (i.e. suspected pot smoker & purported primadonna Percy Harvin). Basically, if you can’t say something nice, then keep away from campus:
Some are welcome, some aren’t. …We want former Gators to come back, but loyalty’s a two-way street. If you want to be critical of a player on our team or a coach on our team you can buy a ticket for seat 37F, you’re not welcome back in the football office. You’re either a Gator or you’re not a Gator. It’s real simple.
Although Meyer didn’t mention any specific names, his sourness could be slanted toward Shane Matthews, the ex-Florida QB who has been known to use airtime on his Gainesville-based sports radio show to air his grievances about the Gators. And it seems that according to Urban, if Shane insists on shaming his old school, then Matthews should be considered persona non Gator.
Of course, Meyer has a right to stand up for his players if he perceives media members (alums or non-alum) are taking shots at his kids. Fellow collegiate coach Mike Leach lit up when rumors spread that his former Texas Tech receiver Michael Crabtree was something of a diva.
On the other hand, everyone also has a right to their opinion, whether Meyer likes it or not. A lot of college coaches cut off in their bubbles of super success sometimes forget that just because they’ve brought home trophies, they’re not completely immune to criticism.
Next thing you know, Urban will want to start banning reporters from covering Gator games if their papers happen to write any columns he doesn’t like. Not that any coach would actually take such maniacal measures.