Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Another Chapter in the Urban Legend

On Saturday night, my parents and I went out to eat at a restaurant that could qualify as an "upscale sports bar," due to the number of TVs in the room and the fact that said TVs were all tuned to sports programming. And the one story that kept on going in true Energizer Bunny fashion was the surprise announcement that University of Florida head coach Urban Meyer would be "resigning his post after the Gators' upcoming bowl game for "undisclosed health reasons" (more and more of which were disclosed throughout the evening). Though I'm not a huge Florida fan, I'd followed Meyer throughout the years, since he coached at my parents' alma mater a few years ago. Though the health problems were not considered life-threatening, it was apparent that the guy needed a break.

For the rest of that night, the sports news was pretty much all-Urban, all the time; Dad and I both commented that it was really getting to be overkill after a few hours (and no, we weren't watching the whole time). So it was even more surprising to read Sunday's paper (which I didn't get to until Monday because of the travel day) and discover that Meyer had already changed his mind, downgrading his resignation into a mere leave of absence and stating that he hoped to be leading the Gators again in the '10 season.

After the screaming, front-of-the-sports-page headlines of the original story, it was certainly strange to see the resolution buried a few pages in. But I wish the guy all the best, and I hope that the time off does him some good. I've certainly tended toward workaholism myself on occasion, but the stage has never been as large as that of an NCAA Division I football coach at a top-tier program. May 2010 be a better year for you (and for the rest of us who have had challenges in '09).

Speaking of coaches hoping for a better 2010: One guy who is undoubtedly counting the seconds until New Year's Day is the Cowboys' special teams coach, Joe DeCamillis. Not only did the team's indoor practice facility fall on him during that big storm in May (fracturing four vertebrae in the process), but he had to miss Sunday's game against the Redskins because he was undergoing an emergency appendectomy at the time. And with the same fighting spirit that brought him back to the practice field 15 days after the practice facility collapse, he actually wanted to coach the game first and then get the appendix taken out (the doctors, of course, refused that request). Here's to another quick recovery, Joe D.

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