Urban Meyer is arguably the highest-profile college football head coach to make the jump to the NFL since Nick Saban. In fact, many would argue (correctly, in my opinion) that Meyer’s profile is higher now than Saban’s was when he made the jump.
Saban left LSU for the NFL following the 2004 season, becoming the head coach of the Miami Dolphins. He didn’t last in the NFL for long, as he spent just two seasons coaching the Dolphins. Saban became the Alabama head coach ahead of the 2007 season.
Many are pointing to Saban’s NFL tenure – and his lack of success – as an example of what to expect from Meyer. The former Ohio State head coach accepted the Jacksonville Jaguars head coaching job earlier this offseason.
Don’t bring up the Saban comparisons to Meyer, though. He had a blunt response to a question about Saban from NBC Sports’ Peter King.
King asked Meyer if there was a chance he could flame out early like Saban did.
“Zero chance at that happening,” Meyer said. “What Coach Saban went through, I don’t know. That’s Coach Saban’s business. I’m not quite sure. At some point, I might talk to him about it . . . he’s a friend of mine and I got great respect for him. It is different. It’s completely different. My mind is set. There’s gonna be some losses . . . That’s gonna be miserable. I hate losing. We all do. But the reality is that you’re gonna lose. Hopefully you win more than you lose. But that’s something that’s gonna be new to me. I have to get my mind right and I’m working on that.”
Saban, meanwhile, said earlier this year that he believes Meyer will do well in the NFL.
“I think he’ll do great in the NFL,” Saban said on The Rich Eisen Show. “I think the key to it is you’ve gotta have a great staff and you’ve gotta get people in the organization on the same page in the NFL so everybody’s working together. If you can do that — I know he’s a good coach and a good motivator and players respect him — help the players get better, they’ll have success.”
Meyer and the Jaguars are expected to select Trevor Lawrence with the No. 1 overall pick in the NFL Draft next month.