Shelley Meyer Reluctant To Resume Role Of Coaching Wife


UPDATED: Friday February 3, 2012 8:49 AM

Shelley Meyer has been by her husband's side, every step of the way, as married to the game of football as she is to Urban Meyer.

The couple's life has carried them full circle; from Ohio to Illinois, Colorado, Notre Dame, Utah, Florida and back.

The journey back to Ohio was not an easy one for Shelley Meyer, 10TV's Andrea Cambern reported.

The move came after Urban's on-again, off-again coaching career at the University of Florida where the pressure finally put him in a hospital.

"He had been complaining about those chest pains for a lot of years and they were getting worse," Meyer said.  "He just got to the point where he thought this job is going to kill me."

Urban Meyer walked away from coaching football and recommitted to his family and his health.

"I don't know what he thought was going to happen when he stopped coaching," Shelley Meyer said.  "(He) thought we were going to hang out together all the time, take long walks and have breakfast and lunch.  Well, I kind of went on with my life."

Her life includes teaching at Florida's college of nursing and has a master's degree in psychiatric nursing.  Shelley Meyer, who grew up in  Frankfort,  Ohio,  outside of Chillicothe, also juggles schedules for their three children. 

She told Cambern she loved their time together and his new job last year with ESPN.

"I thought it was great," Shelley Meyer said.  "I loved it.  His schedule was great - not stressful at all -- he was so relaxed, doing all the things he wanted to all those years that he wanted to do but couldn't because he was so busy."

However, Urban Meyer's new life was not fulfilling his love of coaching.

"When (the Ohio State) job opened, I said, 'I better get ready.  I know that conversation is coming and it did,'" Shelley Meyer said.

It set off an emotional roller coaster in the Meyer household.

"I just kept saying, 'You need more time.  You have not taken enough time.  This was only a couple months out,' but he was missing it so bad; so much more than he thought," Meyer said.

Urban Meyer would accept the job at Ohio State but with strings attached, from a family that was tired of playing second fiddle to football.

"(I said), 'First of all, you have to prove to me that you are going to do this differently this time.  This is not going to consume you -- that you're not going to let yourself get run down -- going to take care of yourself and delegate more duties,'" Meyer said.  "I just said, 'You have to prove this.'"

Shelley Meyer and the children even drew up a contract, holding him to his word.

Urban Meyer pulled out the contract when he was named Ohio State coach on Nov. 29, two days after the Buckeyes lost their regular season finale to arch-rival Michigan.

The contract now hangs in his office at the Woody Hayes Athletic Center, next to his family photos.

Urban and Shelley Meyer have been married for 23 years.  Their two daughters play Division I volleyball for Georgia Tech and Florida Gulf Coast universities.  Urban Meyer said his son will be on the sideline with him at Ohio State football games.

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