Tressel Could Be Headed to Akron
By Brandon Castel
COLUMBUS, Ohio — Just as Urban Meyer is wrapping up his first signing class at Ohio State, the school’s former head coach may have found a new home.
Photo by Dan Harker
After spending one year as a replay assistant in the NFL with the Indianapolis Colts, it appears Jim Tressel is returning to the college game—not as a coach.
Ohio State’s former head coach received a 5-year “show-cause” penalty from the NCAA for his role in the scandal that ultimately led to his own resignation, as well as a one-year postseason ban for the Buckeyes.
The penalty effectively prevents Tressel from coaching Division I college football, but sources have indicated the University of Akron is in discussions with Tressel about an administrative position at the university.
According to multiple reports, there is a 10 a.m. press conference scheduled for Thursday in which Akron plans to announce the hiring of Tressel as an administrator on the academic side, not in athletics.
“When Jim Tressel and other alumni assisted us in our search for a football coach last December, we began to engage in dynamic conversations about Jim's professional goals outside of athletics,” the University announced in a statement Wednesday evening.
“We share a common interest in innovative programs for student success. Our discussions continue.”
Tressel was interviewed by Colts own Jim Irsay for the vacant head coaching job in Indianapolis, but they ultimately decided on Baltimore Ravens defensive coordinator Chuck Pagano (a former secondary coach with the Cleveland Browns).
According to sources, the 59-year old was also being considered for administrative positions at both Baldwin-Wallace College and Wittenberg University. Tressel was a quarterback at Baldwin-Wallace from 1971-74 under his father, Lee Tressel, a Hall of Fame coach who spent 22 seasons coaching at BW.
There is even a “Tressel Street” on the south side of the Baldwin–Wallace campus in Berea, named in Lee’s honor.
Jim Tressel is also a graduate of Akron, where he served as a graduate assistants from 1975-78. It was Tressel’s first coaching job after completing his undergraduate degree at Baldwin-Wallace, where he earned a bachelor's degree in computer science.
While at Akron, Tressel coached the quarterbacks, receivers, and running backs, while earning a master's degree in education. It was from there he left to coach at Miami (Ohio) University in 1979 and Syracuse in 1981 before coming to Ohio State as an assistant under Earle Bruce in 1983.
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