Episode 110: Did Urban Meyer really break the Florida Gators?

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Reaction to Sporting News story on Urban Meyer with Barrett Sallee

Did Urban Meyer get away with some ugliness in Gainesville?

Two BCS championships can certainly raise the bar for a football program. According to a recent investigative report by Matt Hayes of The Sporting News, it can also let players and coaches get away with a lot of stuff as well. So the question remains, did Urban Meyer break Florida football?

According to the report published by The Sporting News on Monday, former Florida head coach Urban Meyer cut some major slack for key players on his Gators teams during the stretch of winning a pair of BCS championships, including sweeping some serious acts under the proverbial rug. The culture that was cultivated by Meyer, according to the report, raises some eyebrows, especially given the decisions made by Meyer’s ultimate successor in Gainesville, Will Muschamp.Muschamp has been attempting to clean up the Florida program, parting ways with some players that may have benefitted from the Meyer Regime.

Meyer is now on his way to coach Ohio State, with expectations already running high in Columbus despite being placed on a one-year postseason ban by the NCAA for 2012 to start a probation period. Already Ohio State fans are shrugging aside the story, downplaying the credibility of Matt Hayes and just focusing on getting out of their own little mess in Columbus. But it is worth taking a closer look if you are Ohio State.

The NCAA will already be keeping a closer eye on the Ohio State football program in light of how the Jim Tressel era ended unceremoniously. If these reports of what was happening on Meyer’s watch in Gainesville are merited, then don’t you think the folks in Indianapolis will be even more attentive to the daily operations of the Ohio State football program? Of course they will.

But, the question here is just how uncommon or serious are these reports brought to light by The Sporting News? Is it common to see the more high-profile players on a team bond together and receive special treatment from the coaching staff? Probably not, but how far do those that lenience go? That is a serious concern for any program.

On the podcast today I spoke with Barrett Sallee, Bleacher Report’s SEC blogger. I wanted to get his reaction to the story and get a feel for how serious this is down in SEC country. And while we were able to talk I had to get in a few questions about Bobby Petrino and the ongoing saga with Arkansas.

Have a listen to the podcast below, then make sure you are subscribed in iTunes, and following the show on Get Glue! Follow Barrett Sallee on Twitter @BarrettSallee, as well as Bleacher Report’s college football account, @BR_CFB (follow me too). And don’t forget, this podcast can be heard at anytime on Stitcher Radio (and click here for a promo code to get started and a chance to win $100)!

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