Urban Meyer has one game left as head coach at Ohio State — Tuesday’s Rose Bowl against Washington — and he reiterated in an interview aired Saturday on ESPN that he believes he won’t coach again.
In an interview with College GameDay’s Chris Fowler, Meyer said deciding to walk away from his dream job was difficult but necessary for health reasons.
“I’ve dealt with some significant issues this year, really since 2014,” Meyer, an Ohio native, said. “When the word ‘risk’ comes out of the doctor’s mouth, that checks your whole heart a little bit. And I asked the question, ‘What exactly is a risk?’ and (he said), ‘We’re not sure, coach.’”
Meyer has an arachnoid cyst, diagnosed in 1998, that has caused pain in the left side of his head. He had a surgical procedure to drain fluid in 2014, but the problem persists. At times during the season, it seemed to affect the 54-year-old coach, causing him to drop to his knees in the game against Indiana on Oct. 6.
“I believe this is it,” Meyer said. “Once again, that’s between myself and my family, but I don’t believe I’ll coach football again. I feel like I am leaving on my own terms.”
Offensive coordinator Ryan Day, a native of Manchester, N.H., and a former Manchester Central and UNH star quarterback, will assume the head coaching duties after Tuesday’s game.
“I’ve been a Buckeye since I’ve been this big. I love this area,” Meyer said. “My dream was to hand it off to someone who I think is not only great but I think he’ll make us stronger.”
This is Meyer’s second retirement for medical reasons. After the 2010 season, he left Florida, citing health concerns. He worked in television in 2011 and became Ohio State’s head coach in 2012. During his career with the Buckeyes, he has an 82-9 record and a national title.
He will move into an assistant director of athletics role and teach a class on character and leadership at Ohio State in the new year.