AUSTIN (KXAN) — Former Dallas Cowboys coach and recent Pro Football Hall of Fame inductee Jimmy Johnson told The Dan LeBatard Show with Stugotz Tuesday that Urban Meyer turned down Texas for the “challenge” of the NFL.
Texas reportedly offered its head coaching position to Meyer in the late stages of the 2020 college season — before the Longhorns fired Tom Herman. The three-time national championship winning coach ultimately chose the NFL, taking the Jacksonville Jaguars job.
“I don’t think he saw the challenge that Jacksonville gives him and I think he wanted the challenge of professional football. He’s accomplished everything he can accomplish in college football and he wants the challenge of professional football,” Johnson told LeBatard.
Johnson said he spoke with Meyer several times and offered his advice when the former Ohio State and Florida head coach was weighing his career options while working with FOX as a college football analyst.
“We just talked about the strains of recruiting and we actually compared it to going into professional football, as well. I didn’t actually give him my feeling about what he should do. I just talked to him about the pros and cons of both positions,” Johnson said in the interview.
The Longhorns hired Alabama offensive coordinator Steve Sarkisian on Jan. 2, becoming the third new Texas head coach over the last decade. Texas has started preseason practice ahead of the 2021 season opener Sept. 4 against Louisiana.