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College Football

Urban Meyer Does His Best Babu Bhatt Impression

“You’re a very bad man, Jeremy Fowler. Very bad!” (wags finger)

Orlando Sentinel reporter Jeremy Fowler drew the ire from Florida Gators head coach Urban Meyer for, you know, reproducing a quote verbatim made by one of Meyer’s players in an article.

The face-to-face confrontation between reporter and coach all stems from an article by Fowler published on Monday where he quoted Gators wide receiver Deonte Thompson’s not-so-complimentary comments about Tim Tebow when discussing new Gators QB John Brantely:

You never know with Tim,” Thompson said. “You can bolt, you think he’s running but he’ll come up and pass it to you. You just have to be ready at all times. With Brantley, everything’s with rhythm, time. You know what I mean, a real quarterback.”

Thompson apparently is apparently embarrassed and regrets making the comment – which is his right, even though he has not claimed he was misquoted – but that wasn’t good enough for Meyer. Below is Fowler’s account of what transpires in the above video from an article published yesterday evening:

Players were not available after practice, but instead of coming to field questions about the workout, Meyer beelined toward me.

He was coming to defend Thompson.

He was coming to tell me I’m a “bad guy.”

“You’ll be out of practice — you understand that? — if you do that again,” said Meyer, while a couple of spectators still sat in the stands. “I told you five years ago: Don’t mess with our players. Don’t do it. You did it. You do it one more time and the Orlando Sentinel’s not welcome here ever again. Is that clear? It’s yes or no.” (finger pointing toward the face)

“Urban, come on. Don’t make any threats,” I said. “That’s fine. I’ll play by rules.  But all I was doing is quoting the guy. I don’t think I was the only one.”

“You’re a bad guy, man,” Meyer said. “You’re a bad guy.”

After Meyer made the comment about what he would do if Thompson was his son and told me to “be very careful,” he located his daughter, Nicki, who was 20 yards away. Seconds later, they both turned in our direction and Meyer pointed toward me.

So there you have it. Urban Meyer thinks Jeremy Fowler is a very bad man for doing his job.  That’ll learn ’em.

But Coach Meyer should watch himself and his behavior more closely, with the stress-related heart trouble  and all. I thought we would see a calmer, more composed Meyer after his health scare. You know, an “Urban Renewal,” if you will.

Jeremy Fowler: Why Urban Meyer says I’m a “bad guy” [Orlando Sentinel]
Florida Gators WR Deonte Thompson sounds happy to usher in post-Tebow era [Orlando Sentinel]