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Tom Jones' Two Cents

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Urban Meyer looking forward to new gig



meyer.For those wondering if Urban Meyer's new gig as a college football analyst at ESPN is going to take time away from his family -- a major factor in his decision to walk away as Gators' coach -- it really won't. Meyer's offseason workload will be minimal and come college football season, Meyer likely will be away from home just a couple of days a week.

While schedules could change, the basic plan is to have Meyer work as a game analyst once a week and provide analysis on College GameDay. He'll give that analysis from the site of the game he is calling. He also will do commentary on College Football Live, but likely will have the ability to do that from Gainesville.

In other words, the demand on his time won't be anywhere close to being a college football coach.

I still have my doubts about how the normally rigid Meyer will translate over television, but he did receive positive reviews for his work from the BCS National Championship.

"As he showed during BCS coverage, his ability to communicate the strategic aspects of the game and his incredible track record for success will serve college football fans everywhere," ESPN executive vice president Norby Williamson said.

The biggest challenge for Meyer -- as it is for every coach or athlete turned broadcaster -- is the willingness to be critical when necessary.

"Does it worry me? Yeah,'' Meyer said. "But I'm going to just give my opinions. I've done this for a long time. A lot of people have opinions, but I can give an opinion that's probably a little bit more in-depth than most. And I look forward to doing that. ... I don't think it's my job to be critical, it's my job to analyze college football. And when I was discussing this with ESPN that came up quite often. I'm an analyst, I'm not going to criticize. If that means I have to give a strong opinion one way or another, then I'm certainly going to do that."

And what about Florida?

"I'll be very respectful of Florida and very respectful of the game," Meyer said. "I don't know that until it happens. I think we have a great coach (Will Muschamp) and Florida is obviously a great program, so I have no problem at all. Plus I'm a Florida fan. I'm not going to be ashamed of that."

Meyer's new job officially starts Wednesday on ESPNU's coverage of National Signing Day.

[Last modified: Tuesday, February 1, 2011 11:25am]


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