Ohio State head football coach Jim Tressel resigns

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The Ohio State University announced today via a press release that it has accepted the resignation of head football coach Jim Tressel.  Tressel who went 106-22 in his 10 years at the helm fought back tears this morning as he told his players he was stepping down, according to Doug Lesmerises of the Cleveland Plain Dealer.

By: Jeff Beck

Luke Fickell, who was already slated to serve as interim head coach during Tressel’s original five game suspension, will take over as interim head coach for the entire 2011-2012 season.

“After meeting with University officials, we agreed that it is in the best interest of Ohio State that I resign as head football coach,” said Tressel in the release.  “The appreciation that Ellen and I have for the Buckeye Nation is immeasurable.”

The resignation of Tressel will be a hard one to swallow for Buckeye fans.  He leaves with a winning percentage of .828, better than iconic OSU coach Woody Hayes’s .761.  Tressel won a national championship with the Buckeyes in 2002, took the team to two additional championships in 2006 and 2007, led his teams to eight BCS bowl games and was coming off of his sixth straight Big Ten conference championship.

With the resignation comes rampant speculation regarding the new head coach.  Many believe the athletics department will try to target Urban Meyer, former University of Florida head coach.  Meyer was born in Toledo, Ohio, played defensive back for the University of Cincinnati from 1983-1986 and was a position coach for Ohio State from 1986-1987.

However, it seems that speculation will have to continue for at least a year, as the University has made it clear that they intend to stick with Fickell throughout the 2011-2012 season.

“We look forward to supporting Luke Fickell in his role as our football coach,” said Athletics Director Gene Smith.  “We have full confidence in his ability to lead our football program.”

 

Follow Jeff on Twitter at @JeffMBeck

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