Drayton Expected to Stay On Under Urban Meyer
By Brandon Castel
COLUMBUS, Ohio — Urban Meyer is just now starting to piece together his new coaching staff at Ohio State, but there will be a few familiar faces to help get him started.
On Monday evening, Meyer announced that interim head coach Luke Fickell would be the first member of his new staff in Columbus. One day later it appears that group has expanded to include Stan Drayton.
The 40-year old Cleveland native spent this past season coaching the wide receivers at Ohio State, but before that he was the running backs at Florida under Meyer from 2005-07 and again in 2010.
It was rumored that Drayton would be one of the Ohio State coaches to remain on staff under Meyer, and that was all but confirmed Tuesday by OSU commit Mike Thomas.
“Coach Drayton will remain one of my coaches at Ohio State,” the wide receiver from Fork Union Military Academy posted on his Twitter account.
Thomas was one of the recruits who received a phone call from Meyer on his first night as head coach of the Buckeyes. He seemed excited about playing in Meyer’s system and about the fact Drayton would be one of his coaches when he got to Columbus in January.
Drayton left Gainesville after Meyer resigned following the 2010 season and landed in Columbus on Jim Tressel’s coaching staff. Tressel’s brother, Dick, was already coaching the running backs, so Drayton agreed to try his hand at coaching the receivers.
He has a reputation as an intense coach and a fierce recruiter. He told The-Ozone.net during the season that he is willing to “give it up” for his players every day in practice, but he expects a lot from them in return.
That fits perfectly with Meyer’s coaching philosophy, which could not have fallen closer to the Woody Hayes tree. Hayes was known for his toughness and for outworking his opponents.
Ohio State could not officially confirm the news that Drayton would remain on staff, but our sources have indicated from the start that he would be welcomed aboard. As for his exact role, that has yet to be determined.
Drayton has created a relationship with the young wide receivers at Ohio State, as well as a number of high school receivers who are headed to Columbus, but he is a running back by trade.
He was an All-American tailback at Allegheny (Pa.) College, where he is the school’s all-time leading rusher and scorer. He was a part of the 1990 Division III national championship team, and still holds the single-season record for touchdowns per game (3.2).
He was inducted into Allegheny College Athletic Hall of Fame in 2005, and had been a running backs coach for his entire collegiate career. That includes stints at Villanova, Mississippi State, Tennessee and Syracuse. He also spent three seasons (2001-03) as an offensive quality control assistant with the Green Bay Packers.
If Drayton is on board with Meyer and Fickell, that leaves seven permanent coaching spots available on Ohio State’s staff. The current group will remain in place until after a potential bowl game, but Meyer will likely have his entire staff picked in the coming weeks.
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