This time of year, it's standard for coaches who aren't committed to leaving their current positions but who also aren't committed to staying in them, either, to issue a non-denial denial, something along the lines of "I'm happy where I am" or "I'm not looking to leave [School X] right now." Sure, it sounds nice, but the gap between statements like those and the iron-clad "I'm going to be here next year/I'm not going to take that other job" is still easily wide enough to drive the coach's moving vans through.
None of this is news to longtime college football fans, of course. And of course, Urban Meyer doesn't need to use any of that kind of double-talk when it comes to his own employment; he's not going anywhere.
But this may be the first time a coach has put those kind of statements to use to discuss someone else's employment. Meyer has been asked repeatedly in recent weeks about his intentions to retain or dismiss under-fire offensive coordinator Steve Addazio, and though he's consistently stated he plans on keeping Addazio in his current position, he's also consistently left the door open to making a change.
The most recent example came on an Outback Bowl teleconference yesterday, when Meyer addressed the situation like this:
Meyer said Monday that right now he anticipates Addazio staying in that position next season.This much we can say: Meyer has not decided to keep Addazio as his OC for 2011. "Expecting" is not the same as knowing. "Further updates" are most certainly not the same as it being a done deal. So cheer up, Gator fans: there's still a chance that Addazio could get the hook, and judging by how gently Meyer is tiptoeing around the subject, there might even be a good chance.
“I am expecting that to happen,” Meyer said. “I’ll have further updates as we get closer to the bowl game. Like I said, everybody’s out recruiting and doing their business.”
We're not going to tell Addazio to keep the moving company's number around, because he's been invaluable to Meyer as a recruiter and assistant head coach; if he loses the coordinator's chair, it's far more likely he's simply reassigned within the staff rather than told to leave Gainesville entirely. But we also wouldn't recommend Addazio have any new business cards printed up any time soon.