Jacksonville Jaguars owner Wayne Weaver made his fortune in women’s shoes, and that’s why his decision Tuesday to retain coach Jack Del Rio was so disappointing.
To paraphrase the old Nancy Sinatra classic, Weaver should have given Del Rio a pink slip and these parting words, “Those boots were made for walking.”
And then Weaver should have jumped in his car and driven the 75 miles to Gainesville so he could begin orchestrating the other daringly decisive blockbuster moves that might save his sinking franchise. I’m not just talking about the drafting of University of Florida quarterback Tim Tebow, but the hiring of UF coach Urban Meyer, too.
Not to say Meyer should leave UF for the Jaguars; in fact, it would probably be downward career step at this point. And not to say Meyer would leave UF and take the Jags job, but Weaver should have at least have made a run at him and forced him to say no. He should have offered Meyer a mega-contract and told him he would have every opportunity to bring Tebow and his spread offense to the NFL.
Weaver had the perfect opportunity to ignite his woefully languishing franchise and rid himself of Del Rio, a coach whose tenure in Jacksonville has clearly stagnated. From all indications, Southern Cal wanted to hire Del Rio to come back and coach his alma mater as the successor to Pete Carroll. If only Weaver had encouraged Del Rio to pursue the USC job, he could have saved the Trojans from the embarrassment of hiring Lane Kiffin and began immediate negotiations to make Meyer the new coach of the Jaguars.