COLUMBUS, Ohio – Urban Meyer is back on familiar turf, fit and rarin’ to go as Ohio State’s new football coach.
Without question, he’d like to add to the national titles and success he had at Florida – only this time with a better ending: No burnout.
A match that seemed obvious for months was made Monday when the Buckeyes hired Meyer to take over a glamour program struggling through a year of well-publicized NCAA violations.
Meyer resigned as Gators coach after last season, citing health concerns and a desire to spend more time with his family.
“A year ago in my mind I was convinced I was done coaching,” the 47-year-old said.
“If not for the coaching position at Ohio State, I would not have coached this year,” said Meyer, who grew up in Ashtabula, Ohio, about 200 miles from the campus.
Meyer will become one of the highest-paid college coaches. He was given a six-year contract that pays $4 million annually, plus another $2.4 million total in “retention payments.” He also can qualify for supplemental bonuses.
Interim coach Luke Fickell will coach the Buckeyes (6-6) in their bowl game. Meyer will keep him on as an assistant but declined to say in what capacity.
Career record: 104-23 in 10 seasons (Bowling Green, Utah, Florida).