Urban Meyer isn’t a happy man today. Lane Kiffin doesn’t care.

It’s inevitable when you have a young, loaded team:  a few recruits are going to take a good look at your depth chart (or, more likely, be invited by some other coach to take a good look at your depth chart) and decide that yours isn’t the best program for them to commit to.

Welcome to Florida, 2009, where Urban Meyer suffered the indignity of having a few recruits redirected away from Gainesville to rival locations like Knoxville (yeah, that’s gotta sting a little) and Tallahassee.  Shit happens, right?

Not to Urban Meyer it doesn’t.  Or at least it shouldn’t.

On the difficulty of recruiting after so much success:

“We see it here all of the time. One thing you find out is when every school is comparing themselves to you [Florida], they take a shot at your academics, at your coaching staff, win and loss record, offense, defense and that we don’t run the ball. We certainly do run the ball and we do it very well. You hear things and just kind of sit back and say ‘Wow.’ It is a good place to be, though, a place that people are trying to catch right now. The problem is and the thing we can’t let happen is to let them go out there and catch us. They are out there trying, and there are a bunch of guys working their tails off with a bull’s eye on the Orange and Blue. It was really bad this year. I don’t want to say it is all negative. It is just that guys are trying to steal our guys and I’m convinced a couple of guys were recruited by some schools just because they said yes to Florida…

Those last minute decommits are so frustrating.  And it’s the NCAA’s fault.

On the amount of decommitments in the past month and his position on early signing period:

“What it also makes me rethink is they have basically taken the head coach out of recruiting. I always like to recruit the back half because I knew the players through text messages from spring recruiting. Basically a head coach, now, is not allowed to spring recruit and not allowed to text message and basically gets one phone call a week. It’s hard to develop relationships that way. I am going to fight like crazy to get them on campus even more so in the spring. You don’t get that relationship with a high school coach and you certainly don’t get it with a player. When a head coach goes out, you’re seeing seven schools and you never get to just sit down like an area coach does. I have thought about that early signing, I’m not as opposed to it as I used to be.”

What Urban doesn’t understand is that if the NCAA were to abolish the new texting rules tomorrow, Junior would just go out and hire himself the best damned texter on the planet for a couple of hundred grand a year.  Because that’s the way they roll in Knoxville these days.

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UPDATE: Junior either has the biggest pair in the conference or is flat out certifiable.  Check out this post from ESPN’s Chris Low, who notes that Junior publicly accused Urban Meyer of a blatant recruiting violation with regard to UT signee Nu’Keese Richardson, took a shot at Richardson’s high school  (from where presumably he might want to recruit again someday) and then went on to bait Nick Saban like this:

… Kiffin also took aim at Alabama coach Nick Saban and suggested that Saban should “thank” new Tennessee assistant Lance Thompson for the Crimson Tide’s No. 2-ranked class. Thompson was one of Saban’s best recruiters at Alabama before leaving to join the Tennessee staff in January.

Thompson even got into the act and assured the crowd that Saban wasn’t going to get another one of his players.

SEC Media Days will be awesome this year.

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UPDATE #2: According to UF AD Jeremy Foley, Junior doesn’t know what he’s blathering about.

University of Florida Athletic Director Jeremy Foley responded to Kiffin’s accusations saying, “There was no rule violation and we have confirmed this with Southeastern Conference.

“It is obvious that Coach Kiffin doesn’t know that there is not a rule precluding phone contact with a prospect during an official visit on another campus during a contact period. His allegations are inappropriate, out of line and, most importantly, totally false. It is completely unfair to Urban Meyer, our coaching staff, our football program and our institution. The appropriate action at this time in my opinion is for Coach Kiffin to make a public apology. His comments not only slandered our coach, but he violated SEC rules by publicly criticizing another coach and institution.”

This is getting more enjoyable by the hour.  (h/t Saurian Sagacity)

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UPDATE #3: The SEC weighs in.

In a statement, SEC Commissioner Mike Slive said the following:

“Coach Kiffin has violated the Southeastern Conference Code of Ethics,” Slive said. “SEC Bylaw 10.5.1 clearly states that coaches and administrators shall refrain from directed public criticism of other member institutions, their staffs or players.

“The phone call to which Coach Kiffin referred to in his public comments is not a violation of SEC or NCAA rules. We expect our coaches to have an understanding and knowledge of conference and NCAA rules.”

Junior better hope his staff is squeaky clean on the recruiting trail, because he’ll never hear the end of it otherwise.

I’m looking forward to that apology.

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UPDATE #4: Ask and ye shall receive.  Here’s Junior’s apology in all its humble glory.

“At an energetic breakfast with some of our donors and alumni I made a statement that was solely meant to excite the crowd,” Kiffin said in a statement.

“If I offended anyone at the University of Florida, including Mr. Foley and Urban Meyer, I sincerely apologize. That was not my intention.”

Well, gosh, I guess that’s settled now.  Sure it is.

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22 Comments

Filed under Don't Mess With Lane Kiffin, Recruiting, The NCAA, Urban Meyer Points and Stares

22 responses to “Urban Meyer isn’t a happy man today. Lane Kiffin doesn’t care.

  1. kckd

    My God, what an EGO? I’m no Lane Kiffin fan, but does he honestly think that UT targeted his kids because they were UF commits. Geeze. That’s one of the dumbest things I’ve ever heard.

    I wish he’d explain that more. Did they systematically call every recruit UF had committed and offer the bait just to see who would bite?

  2. Irishdawg

    Is Meyer gracious about ANYTHING? He’s managed to become the most insufferable jackass in college football, and that’s no easy feat. It’s like being named “Ugliest Biker” or “Drunkest LSU fan”.

  3. Aligator

    come on now guys, he says what he means, Lane may have some great recruiting going on, but you will see he will be right up there with Dick Saben as far as your wanting to hate him. He will be trying to Unseat UF and UGA as the top of the east, maybe they can recruit, great, but so could Ron Zook

  4. kckd

    Allie, it’s not that we like Kiffin bro. But I don’t think any coach has ever said, maybe even thought, that “you’re coming after my kids because they’re my kids” as if it’s more important to tear down his program than worry about your own.

    Do you not think that Kiffen looked at his own roster, decided their needs at a certain position and then looked at the best at that position in the region?

    What Meyer is saying is Kiffin got hired and immediately looked at your commit list and said, let’s see how many we can steal from them.

    That’s just stupid.

  5. NCT

    It is becoming increasingly apparent to me that Urban says what he means to say, not necessarily what he means. That is, most of his published comments are composed for effect and not to convey the truth of the matter asserted. He’s good at it, but it’s creepy.

  6. Urban hasn’t quite figured out that just because he’s St. Urban the Great and he coaches Tebow of Nazareth that other teams aren’t going to just give up. No matter how much he and ESPN wish they would.

  7. The Realist

    Is Urban crying foul over negative recruiting? Wasn’t he guilty of doing the same things when he arrived in Gainesville? That’s without mentioning the “Tebow at LB” stuff he pulled that earned him the “Urban Liar” label.

    I know this might be a “bad deal,” but, seriously. Get over it. He has a pair of national titles. Teams coming after you with a vengeance is part of winning. Of course, he never stayed around long enough to realize it anywhere else he has been. So, maybe this is new to him.

  8. Don’t forget about him having that kid’s records flagged after he had the audacity to sign with LSU instead of with Urban. The self-righteous Gator hypocrisy knows no bounds.

  9. John

    I think it’s because Urban Meyer is a prick.

  10. Dog in Fla

    I think it’s because what Urban Meyer is really trying to say is, “What’s mine is mine and what’s yours is mine.”

  11. Ally

    That’s rich coming from the same man who tried like hell to steal away Rontavious Wooten from us up until the hour before he faxed in his LOI.

    Nice try, Urban.

  12. Kiffin has to be making one of the most obnoxious introductions into conference coaching I’ve ever seen. He has made certifiable enemies of not only Meyer but Saban and Spurrier too.

    In other words coaches that might just be willing to run the score up to the heavens on him. And he will deserve it.

  13. The Realist

    For the record, Tennessee plays at Florida & at Alabama next year. I’m thinking I can go ahead and take Florida to cover for the surest bet of the century. It really doesn’t matter what the spread is. They’ll cover. Alabama, I’m still wavering.

    If Tennessee doesn’t beat UCLA at home in Week 2, they could be staring down the barrel of 2-5 before South Carolina visits on Halloween. With a road trip to Ole Miss, it’s conceivable that Tennessee fails to win 6 games in 2009.

  14. Yeah, I’m with you on that one. Give me Florida and the over. I don’t care what the numbers are.

  15. I agree, the Gators will crush the Vols this year, not sue to some recruiting issues this off season but because the Vols talent pool is shallow.

    I don’t think Kiffin has the imagination or talent himself to compete in the SEC. Hopefully his Dad will be an asset.

  16. ArchDawg

    He is quickly becoming the biggest douche in the SEC. I won’t put him quite on Urban level yet, but man, he’s close. And he hasn’t even coached a game yet.

  17. Wolfman

    What a GREAT football season this is going to be in the SEC.

  18. Pingback: An Open Letter to Urban Meyer Regarding Lane Kiffin’s Recent Comments | MrSEC.com

  19. Rocky Top

    Urban Legend is the biggest whiner!!!! I wish Notre Dame would hire him away!!

  20. Tim

    navycs, no talent pool????? bwahahaha, we had the third best defense in div 1 led by the best safety in america, no talent??? geez you are an idiot.