Amid swirling speculation linking Dallas to the former Ohio State head man, a source close to the Dan Patrick Show tells its titular host that Meyer is now interested in potentially succeeding Jason Garrett, partly because Meyer may be “too toxic” to return to the college ranks.
The DP Show tweet containing this nugget has since been deleted, but Bleacher Report grabbed a screenshot and others have shared what they heard on Twitter.
Of course, this isn’t the first time that Meyer’s expressed intrigue in coaching America’s Team. In October, the 55-year-old — speaking for Oklahoma’s Lincoln Riley, a reported target of Cowboys owner Jerry Jones — gushed over the legendary NFL franchise.
“Pure speculation, because I know [Riley], but I don’t know him like that, but that’s the one [job],” Meyer said, via Sports Illustrated. “That’s the New York Yankees, that’s the Dallas Cowboys, that’s the one. Great city, you got Dak Prescott, you got Zeke Elliott, you got a loaded team, and I can’t speak for [Riley] obviously—I hate to even speculate—because I don’t know him, that’s really not fair, but to me, that’s the one job in professional football that you kind of say, ‘I gotta go do that.'”
Meyer, asked point-blank if he’d be interested in the position, didn’t say no.
“Absolutely. Absolutely,” he said, per SI. “That one? Yes.”
Coincidentally, Patrick’s hearsay came on the same day that Jones denied a rumor claiming Cowboys VP Stephen Jones had met with Meyer. But he didn’t say anything about speaking to him.
“I can confirm that it’s absolutely not correct. We have not met with any coach,” were Jones’ exact words during Tuesday’s appearance on 105.3 The Fan.
NFL Network’s Jane Slater reported on Dec. 6 that Dallas has a “very real interest” in Meyer, who’s also held head-coaching stints at Florida and Utah, and who’s been closely connected to the Cowboys throughout the season.
“Jerry Jones says Jason Garrett will remain the coach but I can confirm a very real interest in Urban Meyer,” Slater tweeted hours after the 6-7 Cowboys suffered their third straight defeat. “In fact, I’m told Stephen Jones spoke with him recently. Lincoln Riley remains a strong candidate & file this name as a possibility Clemson OC Tony Elliott per sources.”
Jones has announced that Garrett will remain the team’s coach until the end of the 2019 campaign, whenever that is. But unless Dallas finds its way to the NFC Championship Game, at a minimum, they’re expected to move in a different direction.
Meyer should be among the first round of interviews that Jones sets up when — not if — the Cowboys’ coaching search kicks off in earnest.
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Meyer’s Rocky Ending to Buckeyes Tenure
Meyer was embroiled in a national controversy in 2018, when college football insider Brett McMurphy broke the story of then-Ohio State assistant coach Zach Smith physically and emotionally abusing his wife, Courtney, in 2015. Meyer was aware of the allegations from the outset but never reported them to the proper authorities.
Meyer, who fanned the flames with controversially insensitive comments, was placed on paid administrative leave last August and suspended for the first three games of the Buckeyes’ 2018 campaign. He announced his retirement after the season, finishing with an 83-9 career record in Columbus.
Following his retirement, Meyer — who briefly retired in 2009 due to health issues — told ESPN that “I believe I will not coach again.”
Follow Zack Kelberman on Twitter: @KelbermanNFL