One of the most successful coaches in college football history, Urban Meyer won three national championships and compiled a career record of 187 victories and only 32 losses in 17 seasons, averaging exactly 11 wins per year. His teams were ranked in the top 25 at the conclusion of all but two seasons and won 12 of 15 bowl games.
His national championships came in 2006 and 2008 at the University of Florida, but he celebrated the apex of his career at Ohio State, where he won the inaugural college football playoff national championship in 2014 and won Big Ten titles in 2014, 2017 and 2018. Meyer’s Buckeyes dominated the Big Ten with a 54-4 record, including a 7-0 record versus Michigan. His teams enjoyed winning streaks of 24 and 23 games, longest in Ohio State history.
Meyer, 55, is a native Buckeye. He was born in Toledo on July 10, 1955. His family moved to Ashtabula where he launched his football career at Ashtabula St. John, one of the smallest high schools in the state. From there he went to the University of Cincinnati where he played defensive back. He graduated in 1986 and set out to become a coach. His first job was at Illinois State as an assistant. From there he moved on to the University of Toledo as an assistant under Nick Saban.
His first head coaching job was down the road at Bowling Green in 2001 where he stayed two years and compiled a 17-6 record, which propelled him to the University of Utah where he continued to attract attention with a two-year mark of 22-2. Florida was next from 2005-2010 and Urban became a national coaching star with two national championships and a 65-15 record. Both Sports Illustrated Magazine and The Sporting News named him Coach of the Decade for the years 2000 to 2009.
Meyer took a one-year sabbatical from coaching in 2011 before returning to Ohio where he became the first college coach to win national championships in two different conferences. His teams won every division championship since the Big Ten adopted the division format. He produced 31 first-team All-Americans and 12 Academic All-Americans over his 17-year career.
Meyer stepped away from coaching after the 2018 season and moved into athletic administration as assistant athletics director in charge of fund-raising and community relations.
He and his wife Shelley have three grown children and continue to reside in Columbus.