Harvin among Gators players who undermined the program under Meyer

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Former Florida coach Urban Meyer delivered to the NFL multiple successful players during his time in Gainesville.  As Matt Hayes of Sporting News explains it, however, some of those successful players contributed to the implosion of the program.

According to Hayes, Meyer enabled certain players, including them in what he allegedly called a “Circle of Trust.”  When receiver Percy Harvin, tight end Aaron Hernandez, and linebacker Brandon Spikes each missed the 2008 season opener due to supposed injuries, Hayes reports that they each had actually failed drug tests.  The protection of Harvin, Hernandez, and Spikes from public acknowledgement of their violations of university rules bolstered the notion that some players got special treatment.

Harvin, per Hayes, became the most blatant example of the double standard.  Harvin allegedly stopped during a 2007 conditioning run and, when pressed to continue, said, “This [expletive] ends now.”  The next day, conditioning consisted of playing basketball.

Hayes also reports that Harvin once pulled a Sprewell on receivers coach Billy Gonzales, grabbing him by the neck and throwing him to the ground.  Harvin was never disciplined.

Gonzales told Hayes that the incident was “a little overblown.”  Meyer admitted, “Something did happen and something was handled.  I don’t think it’s fair to Percy Harvin or Billy Gonzales to talk about it.”

In Minnesota, Harvin once reportedly got into a “heated argument” with former Vikings coach Brad Childress, and the incident nearly turned physical.

Apparently, if that had happened, it wouldn’t have been the first time Harvin laid hands on a coach.

89 responses to “Harvin among Gators players who undermined the program under Meyer

  1. why would you title the article “Harvin among players who undermined…” it sounds to me like Urban Meyer’s special treatment of certain players is what undermined his own program. In your examples, the problem isn’t with Harvin, it’s with the lack of discipline he received.

  2. As Jeremey Fowler of Pioneer Press reported (who also covered him in Florida): “I do think Harvin has matured in his three years in Minnesota. Regarded as team leader, more forthcoming with media.”

  3. i really doubt he threw a coach down by the neck. If that happened it would have got out back then. And for the failed drug test, no surprise there remember he had a GREAT combine & he was high during it.

  4. Bring on the Minnesota Vikings hating Packer fans……….because Harvin’s “alleged” actions have to do with the Minnesota Vikings team. I’m sure gb4mn0 and textexington have some witty remarks for us all to roll our eyes at.

  5. I find it very hard to believe that a player could put his hands on a coach’s neck and throw him to the ground and not get disciplined for it at all. Urban Meyer is one of the most successful college coaches, and no coach can be successful without running a disciplined program. I don’t believe it for a second.

  6. How about we all knew they were and are possibly still smoking pot. The question is why are you reporting this? The recruits from Ohio and Michigan can’t wait to play for the Rose Bowl… But wait, Urban is reeling what

  7. Come to Chicago, Lovie will beat your @$$! And if he won’t, Lach and Pepp will have a quiet conversation with you. All things aside, love to see him oppo BMarsh. Deadly combo.

  8. I’m not going to demonize the players. You reap what you sow. These colleges have kids playing sports who can’t read let alone complete college course work. Very few of them will ever you pro and these schools use them up and throw them back on the street still unable to read. LSU reported annual football revenue of $69.4 million in 2009-10. All of these big time schools are making between 50 to 100 million off these kids and the coaches are making 5 to 10 million a year.

    The most important question is how can kids who are obviously illiterate get accepted into college and then pass enough classes to remain eligible for four years? This is why I laugh when you all are outraged that a kid accepted a few bucks from a college. The truth is the kid should never have been accepted in the first place! He’s not going to get an education……HE CAN’T READ! I’m sorry, but, these colleges should be sued for educational fraud.

  9. Every one knows star players get special treatment at any and every level. e.g you think all these student athletes maintain the required GPA to play?

  10. When he came out of Florida, his scouting report said something about his sense of entitlement. I didn’t think it was THAT bad!

    We all knew he suffered from migraines… I just didn’t think he also caused them!

  11. These guys are trained to hit other people and get hit by other people from the time that they are 10 years old. We then deify them by buying their jerseys, putting them on national TV, paying them to endorse products, getting their autograph, and watching them get drafted with tens of millions guaranteed to a 22 year old.

    We’re then outraged that these guys have big tempers and egos.

    I personally thing the guy is overbearing, but this is why Tebow has so many fans. You don’t hear stories like this about him, even though he had the same coach and set of rules as Percy Harvin in college. I wonder if he is “excited!” about this?

  12. Harvin is a punk. Always has been. He got suspended his senior year of high school for punching out a ref or something like that.

  13. And Childress thought he pulled one over on Belichick when he took Harvin. Too funny.

    Enjoy your migraine diva.

  14. If Cam Newton was a member of the “circle of trust”, then Urban Meyer would have had another national title. Good thing Cam left Florida, going to Blinn College and Auburn University made him more humble.

  15. How is it Harvin’s fault that Meyer chose to give special treatment to some of his premier athletes? Why is it newsworthy that Harvin got into a pissing match with his coach one time?

    Yeah, we get it. Harvin is a tad volatile on and off the field. Watch him play for 5 minutes and that should be pretty clear.

  16. I don’t think this story is all-too surprising. Every program will have a select few that require a little more observing than others. At the end of the day, Urban Meyer and the UF program won two National Championships. Percy Harvin might have been a diva and a headache, no pun intended, but at the end of the day a coach has to win at all costs. This story will definitely help Meyer’s recruiting believe me. High School standouts are going to be seeing this and saying I want to play for him, I don’t agree with it but it’s true.

  17. Coaches absolutely should try to cover up that their players are being suspended for drug violations. These are(were) amateur athletes. They don’t deserve to be ripped into by the media when they aren’t being paid. Let’s say they didn’t make it to the NFL and had to go find a normal job, would you really want to hire someone who had their name ran though the dirt? In college football, the coaches have an obligation to protect their players and make themselves the target for public scrutiny.

  18. This is shocking considering that both Urban and Harvin seem like such fine, upstanding, classy individuals!

    Yes, that is sarcasm – in case you were wondering.

  19. Harvin has been a punk since his days in high school in Virginia. I witnessed him quit on his team in the state title game in the first half. Pretty much walked off the field and didn’t play another play.

    It doesn’t surprise me these stories are coming out now.

  20. Its the SEC babbbbeeeeee. All they do is win!

    Score 4 on the Wonderlic…just win baby.

    Screw your 25 yr old honey who you just hired despite being married with 4 kids….just win baby.

    Assault a coach and fail multiple drug test…just win baby

    180,000 to play ball, in straight cash homie…..just win baby. DON’T BE HATING! 🙂

  21. A friend of mine from UF has an infamous tale that we only refer to now as the “Percry Harvin story.”

    On a random college night like any other in any other college town, one night there was a gathering of folks who began drinking. One of those people was Percy Harvin, and on this particular night, he caught the eye of a flirtatious, well-informed young lady who must have really wanted to “Harvin” a try with the potential first-rounder. The only problem was, her boyfriend (who was at the same party) wasn’t all about her having new experiences. As legend has it, he confronted his girl and Percy who had engaged in a lengthy conversation, and he pulled out a gun and pointed it at Percy’s face. Percy, reckless as he was, walked up to the barrel, put his mouth around it, and started screaming, I DON’T GIVE A ****. The guy got his girl and got out of there.

    So yeah, Percy Harvin probably has a skewed perception of reality or something, but god darnit his brass is Legendary.

  22. “The most important question is how can kids who are obviously illiterate get accepted into college and then pass enough classes to remain eligible for four years? This is why I laugh when you all are outraged that a kid accepted a few bucks from a college. The truth is the kid should never have been accepted in the first place! He’s not going to get an education……HE CAN’T READ! I’m sorry, but, these colleges should be sued for educational fraud.”
    ————————-

    I think it’s more outrageous that kids are required to get a free education in this country, but they can’t read. Billions are spent on education, and in certain “communities”: charities, boys and girls clubs, free lunch, etc. are all set up beyond public
    education to help the folks get on their feet. In the end? Can’t read, can’t talk, can’t feed themselves.

    Bill Cosby is right. If MLK knew that this is how it would turn out, he probably wouldn’t have even bothered.

  23. @mike83ri

    Is not your TE named in this report ? I would be willing to bet Bilichick would take Harvin if he had the chance just like every other NFL coach. He has been nothing but a great player and teammate since drafted. The players and fans would like him even more if he would of kicked Chillys a**.

  24. Percy Harvin is the best player to play at UF. Better than Tebow. Dude won 2 NC’s in 3 years and could’ve won 3 out of 4 if he stayed his senior year, even though they got destroyed by Bama. Yeah, he has had some immaturity issues in the past but who hasn’t? His migraines were caused by sleep apnea and he hasn’t had any since they told him about it.

  25. Percy was a steal at #22 and has been a really productive pro. He was a smart pick by the Vikings. You can tell this by all of the comments in this group. They seem to be by jealous fans from other NFC franchises and, of course, by all of the Packer fans that like to lurk and comment on anything that has to do with the Vikings or the Bears.

  26. 1. I don’t believe anything that snake Meyer says
    2. The biggest knock on Harvin was his “character issues” coming out of college
    3. He’s be a pro’s pro so far in his career, played through injuries, migraines, and become a leader in the clubhouse…absolute stud.
    4. Chilli gives me heartburn so I’m sure he gives Percy migraines

  27. Since Florida…I always thought that he was on medical marijuana for those migraines to be honest…who knows though….

  28. Percy Harvin has been nothing but a professional and stand up citizen since being drafted by the Vikings. Dude plays his heart out every week, and is among the toughest WR in the NFL.

    Kid made a few mistakes in college, so did I half the majority of people I know. People who fail to learn from their mistakes are not real men. Percy is not in that class.

  29. “Kid made a few mistakes in college, so did I half the majority of people I know. People who fail to learn from their mistakes are not real men. Percy is not in that class.”

    Poorly worded…the majority of people I know. Point is everyone makes mistakes, probably including most of the people on this forum ripping Percy.

    Again, Harvin has worked his tail off since joining the NFL and has done nothing wrong.

  30. Wait a second. A college football star at a major university had an arrogant attitude and a sense of entitlement? I’m shocked! Now, let’s fast forward to the present day. You’ve heard the NFL stands for Not For Long if you don’t produce. Percy was the best WR on his team last year, and as far as I know, isn’t a lick of trouble in his community. This story doesn’t affect the here and now one single bit. So, let’s talk some more about Janoris Jenkins…

  31. Hey ruvelligwebuike,

    There is zero empirical support for the claims you make in your post. Football player represent a very small percentage of college students, regardless of ethnicity. The number of colege students, athletes and non-athletes, black and white, who graduate without the ability to read and write is so low it is a statistical anomaly. Your post suggests this is a widespread issue beyond athletic programs. Please provide some evidence to support this claim. No matter what your ethnicity, you are a bigot, and a wildly misinformed one at that.

  32. As a Gators fan, I’ve suspected a lot of those issues with enabling for a whole now, and that doesn’t surprise me at all. But choking out a coach and demanding practice ends? Sorry, that doesn’t sound like Harvin. The drug bit, sure, but a lot of this seems pretty far fetched and it’s sad how quickly everyone here buys into it. He’s never been the late hit, violent type of player, and he sure as HECK isn’t lazy. One of the hardest working players I’ve ever seen come out of Florida, so I’d be very surprised to hear him demand that everyone take it easy.

    I think people should really wait until someone else corroborates this before automatically believing every word.

  33. Wait, you mean to tell me that coaches go to great measures to protect their valuable players?

    Oh, and your telling me that football is a high intensity game and that sometimes emotions get the best of people?

    You don’t say. You can file this as: if this surprises you, you’ve been living under a rock.

  34. Regardless of how Harvin behaved in high school or college, by all accounts he’s been a model citizen since joining the NFL. Fighting with Chilly isn’t a black mark against him. When he was drafted, people thought he would be like Moss in terms of his behavior, but it hasn’t been like that at all.

  35. What will be interesting, given this ‘new’ information, will be to see how many ‘migraines’ Percy has this season…I hope that this is not just NFL primadonna crap, the Vikes have enough legitimate issues both on and off the field.

  36. I think its funny how this is a big deal. So ur telling me there are college athleats that think they r better then everyone else? Please. (Joking). Percy has obviously matured over the years. As far as the Chilly incedent, does anyone really blame him, Chillys a dipsh!#. No story here, move on.

  37. if you watched Harvin fight Jeremy Shockey and practically the entire Carolina bench last year, you can’t deny the guy is one tough sob, and a hot-head.

    i haven’t heard any stories about Harvn up here in Minneapolis. michael beasley, however, is an entirely different story. good god some nba athletes are reckless.

  38. If this type of thing “undermined” the UF program, then just about every football and basketball program in the NCAA is being undermined. The reality is that universities cater to their athletes, especially when it comes to basketball and football. The influx of revenue from these sports is enormous; and the better your program, the more money that will come in. Coaches benefit because they’re paid exorbitant salaries when they have success. To have success is to make money, as a program and as a coach. To do this, they must recruit well, then kiss these players’ hind ends for the duration of their college careers. These athletes (see I didn’t say “student-athletes”) don’t want to play for some dictatorial coach like a Bear Bryant or Bob Knight- they want and expect to be coddled.

  39. Quite honestly i would feel like choking someone too if the university i played for was making millions off of my efforts and i got squat. All of these universities are doing nothing but exploiting young men for a buck and the players get nothing but a bogus piece of paper that the school calls a degree. Instead of focusing on what a kid does wrong all the time why not write an article on how these kids are getting screwed…to put it mildly. The reason college football don’t have a playoff system is because of the revenue that they would lose from all of the ridicilous bowl games that are played.

  40. hatessyncopanths says

    “There is zero empirical support for the claims you make in your post. Football player represent a very small percentage of college students, regardless of ethnicity. The number of colege students, athletes and non-athletes, black and white, who graduate without the ability to read and write is so low it is a statistical anomaly. Your post suggests this is a widespread issue beyond athletic programs. Please provide some evidence to support this claim. No matter what your ethnicity, you are a bigot, and a wildly misinformed one at that.”
    ————————-

    I think you missed the point purposely so you could call me a bigot. No kid period, black, white, asian could EVER graduate college let alone high school with the level of education some of these guys have. Morris Claiborne, prime example.

    I went further with the point, saying how pathetic it is that with all of the free programs and an absolutely free public education system that is indeed required up to a certain age, that it is even possible to be a high school graduate that can’t read past a first grade level. That’s the real problem. Makes me think that any money spent is wasted because it’s not being taken seriously.

    And don’t kill the messenger. Cosby said it. I just parroted it. Show you evidence…you need evidence that the black community as a whole does worse in school than anyone else? You would like me to post evidence of that to prove it to you? What rock have you been living under? Stop denying facts and start looking for a real solution.

  41. You Richard’s must get paid for the quantity of articles not the quality. All we here from you Richard’s are rumor and innuendo of what some special source (probably a disgrutled player wantabe) gave you. If you could it would be better reading and eliminate the “woman issues” of gossip that run prevalent through your articles.

  42. Percy is one of my favorite athletes and I’ll state for the record he plays hard and has a short fuse. He has had plenty of flags for getting into shoving matches on the field. From what I see of those times he has done this, it’s protecting a team player or getting mad when he is getting pushed around on the field. The guy is built like a brick, but he’s not the biggest guy on the field.

    Off the field he has been part of great things in MN and other places with charity and fans.

    I think 90% of the players in the NFL have an entitlement problem. Even more so if they work hard and play through great pain.

    I’d draft him again in a second.

  43. Percy, reckless as he was, walked up to the barrel, put his mouth around it, and started screaming, I DON’T GIVE A ****. ……..How does one scream with a gun in their mouth? It would sounds like…”I own iv a ug.” Maybe he was saying he only wanted a hug.

  44. Chilly was a good coach. He got run out of town by the inmates that were running the asylum…by this guy and others just like him and just as arrogant….Favre included. Good luck with that.

  45. No surprise. Even IRS agents, used car salesmen, Nigerian email scammers, and politicians think Urban Meyer is sleazy.

  46. @ ruvelligwebuike,

    So, no evidence, huh? Also, no one, black or white, believes Bill freaking Cosby speaks for the so-called black community anymore than Jesse Jackson or Al Sharpton. Ridiculous.

    My understanding of your post is that it is focused on college graduates. Your post is based on a false premise. The suggestion that the Wonderlic score of one player, which is in no way a predictor of the intellectual or reading ability of anyone, is proof that illiteracy among college athletes and the so-called black community is at epidemic levels is laughably ignorant. In your case, the difference between bigot and dumbass is negligible. Wait, you don’t understand the definitions of many of these words, do you?

    As you were.

  47. There is nothing negative you can say about Harvin! He has been a great player & teammate! Digging up shyt from 4-5 years ago is nothing more than a slow media day! I would take 52 more studs just like harvin! He is awesome!

  48. Players can’t undermine a program, only the ones in charge can. Also considering how many championships he won, I don’t think undermining is the correct term. He obviously lacks a lot of integrity, just his approach to recruiting shows that. Just proves that if you win, then nobody, not even the parents of these recruits will care. I personally wouldn’t want my son mentored by this sleazeball.

  49. Percy is one of the most electric players in the NFL. So what?hasn’t been in trouble for the Vikings. Has been great trouble for NFL defenses though,,,right Packers??? This story is about Meyers short comings,,,not his players

  50. The truth is the kid should never have been accepted in the first place! He’s not going to get an education…

    And all the sports media knows it.

    And not one of them will speak of it.

    Gutless pukes.

  51. vikes49 says:
    Apr 10, 2012 8:05 AM
    jaimelh02 says:
    Apr 10, 2012 12:38 AM
    Yet the Minnesota Vikings still drafted this prick

    Yes we did!! Glad he is ours!!!

    —————————————-

    Why is not surprising that you’re confessing to liking “pricks?”

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