Defector’s coverage of Urban Meyer has been both plentiful and flawless, from Comrade Kahler’s tours through his disastrous wake to Comrade Thompson’s leaky paint box of fun, but there is another side to Meyer that has not been fully explored: that of the severed head on the pike outside the village that serves as an example to all the others.
In other words, while he will be fired at season’s end and it will be spun by Jacksonville wallet Shad Khan as an act of mercy for a man who deserves so much better, he ought to be retained, re-upped, and kept in this hellscape for as long as possible because in the end as in the beginning, Urbs was the architect of his own dumpster of self-preservationist catarrh and is thus a useful example for every new coach in every new job at every level of sport.
Indeed, when all the football pundits in the zoo spasm out at feeding time and shriek that it’s time for him to go, that’s just more proof and justification for him to be forced to stay. When Meyer tries to quit because he’s developed a health issue, Khan should actually seize him and keep him in the office guarded by some of his son Tony’s stable of professional wrestlers, working against his will and making game plans that work as well as Sunday’s 20-0 loss to Tennessee. Make him serve all the time he owes. No time off for cowardly behavior. Don’t give him the out of a golden parachute that breaks the fall after he’s been shoved out of the private jet. Don’t pay him off. He asked for it, so give it to him, and by “it,” we mean “the works.”
Nobody has ever warranted a spectacular dismissal more, which is why nobody has ever deserved dismissal less. And since we have a fresh example of bullying hubris in LSU’s latest mistake, Brian Kelly, Urbs needs to be used as a shining example of what you get when you get everything you want because you think you deserve it.
As the Jon Gruden to Shad’s Mark Davis, Urbs has been a comprehensive disaster—all rep and no prep but plenty of blame delegation. He was a publicity stunt to try and make University of Florida fans get a hankering to relive those old glories with brand-new failures only an hour and half north on U.S. 301, which is the worst reason to hire any coach. Fans don’t go to games to watch Ol’ Visor Head think up new ways to gain seven yards on third-and-11, they go for the cranial damage that only repetitive high speed collisions of shiny plastic hats can provide. The building where the Jaguars play has had four name changes in 25 years and none of them have taken, because, well, the Jaguars.
But Urbs already exceeded his failure mandate by bolting the fellas after the Week 4 loss in Cincinnati to see how young women in his restaurant were handling the loss, then lied about it multiple times (the court of first resort for your standard whistled megalomaniac). He has since gone all Humphrey Bogart in The Caine Mutiny, and maybe he is doing so as a diversion to force Khan to fire him as a mercy.
Well, no. We at Defector need him for the visual and literary content, true, and his cartoony and possibly deliberate missteps are the stuff that could keep Jacksonville in the news for years, but that’s not the reason to keep him in his self-created hell-stasis. OK, it is an excellent reason to do so, but it isn’t the only one.
The reason to keep Urbs right where he is is to see just how many horrors of the damned he can be forced to endure in five years. Keep him as a science experiment to see how bad a bad idea can get if properly nourished and maintained. Keep him as a chastener to Khan to remind him that him that his own sports ownership peaked when he took down the statue of Michael Jackson outside Craven Cottage in 2013, and that Fulham’s relegation from the Premier League the following spring is a finer achievement than whatever it is the Jaguars have done and are now doing. Keep him because walking away from a colossally idiotic idea is too easy. Indeed, the disembodied jaguar head logo should be replaced by Comrade Thompson’s representation of Meyer’s disembodied head as Khan’s penance for re-loosing this social misfit into visible society.
So yeah: Save Urbs for all of us because consequences take different forms in different situations, and in this one, quitting is too weaselly and firing is too gentle. Sure this sucks for the employees, but they have a recourse too, by quitting on the field the way they seemed to Sunday in Nashville. Maybe they could perfect their contempt for him by purposely scoring points for the opponent, which would take some doing given that their next two opponents are Houston and the Jets. Let Urbs be a shining example this holiday season of what happens to naughty children when there is no more coal to distribute.