With Urban Meyer hired as Jaguars coach, attention turns to general manager, assistants
The Jaguars have their coach with the hiring of Urban Meyer.
Now comes filling the key front-office job and Meyer's staff.
But during Friday's news conference with Meyer and Jags owner Shad Khan, there was little indication of who or when that might happen, other than Khan saying the team should have an announcement on the general manager to replace Dave Caldwell next week.
Khan has interviewed six candidates for general manager: current interim GM Trent Baalke, former Cleveland general manager and currently Rams consultant Ray Farmer, Saints assistant GM Terry Fontenot, former Giants GM Dave Reese, former Houston GM Rick Smith and former Eagles director of pro personnel Louis Riddick.
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Khan also said he will be overseeing both Meyer and the incoming GM.
“I’ve talked to Urban about our general manager, who it ought to be and we’re working together on it,” Khan said. “I hope we’ll have an announcement or something in the next week or so, but the objective is going to be that—and I’ve shared this with Urban, he’s onboard—both of them will be reporting to me.”
Meyer also said that out of respect to current Ohio State coach Ryan Day, he would not be raiding his staff extensively to offer jobs with the Jaguars. Without mentioning names, Meyer said there was only one OSU assistant he was targeting and said he has talked to athletic director Gene Smith and Day about his intentions.
“You know my affection for both guys and the great university we represented and I won’t do that,” Meyer said about going to Columbus to fill his staff. “That’s the best infrastructure in college sports. I’m not touching them. There might be one that will leave, but I’m not going to do that to that organization. And I’m not sure that they would go. Ohio State is home to those guys now.”
The "one" Meyer is referencing could be coming from a subset of coaches who worked with Meyer at both Florida and Ohio State: strength coach Mickey Marotti, recruiting director Mark Pantoni, football operations manager Brian Voltolini and player development director Ryan Stamper.
Multiple sources, including ESPN and the Columbus Dispatch, reported on Friday that Stamper is on his way back to his hometown to serve in a similar position under Meyer. Stamper, who played at First Coast High School, played for Meyer at Florida.
Reports also have mentioned Meyer's defensive coordinator at Florida, Charlie Strong, as a possible linebackers coach, and Fernando Lovo, who went with Tom Herman to Texas from OSU, again in an administrative post. Lovo worked for Meyer at both Ohio State and Florida.
Meyer also said he was evaluating the assistants under former coach Doug Marrone who are still on salary pending Meyer's decision on staff. Among the coaches considered to have the best chance of being retained are wide receivers coach Keenan McCardell, a key member of the best Jaguars teams in the late 1990s, and special teams coach Joe DeCamillis.