When you're a highly successful college program, other teams are going to want your coaches. We saw that earlier this season when offensive coordinator Tom Herman was named head coach of Houston, and now, another Ohio State coach may be moving on. As first reported by Chicago Tribune beat writer Brad Biggs, Ohio State's running backs coach Stan Drayton is leaving to take the same job with the NFL's Chicago Bears.
Drayton has been with the Buckeyes since 2011, initially serving as wide receivers coach, before moving on to the running backs. He previously worked with Urban Meyer while at Florida, and also worked stints at Bowling Green, Mississippi State, and others. Drayton was also an Assistant Offensive Quality Control & Special Teams Coach with the Green Bay Packers. In 2013, Drayton had been linked to the head coaching position at Florida Atlantic.
Drayton played a major role in guiding Ohio State's record breaking offense, and as a recruiter. In fact, 247Sports named him the best recruiter in the Big Ten for this recruiting cycle, making his loss particularly difficult for Ohio State.
The first thought in many Ohio State fans' minds after hearing the news was how it would be received by prized tailback commit Mike Weber. Weber and Drayton were reportedly on a call with Buckeyes head coach Urban Meyer until 1 a.m. the day of National Signing Day when Weber ultimately rebuffed overtures from his home state Michigan Wolverines and decided to honor his prior commitment to OSU. Weber took to Twitter to share his understandably strong feelings on the news:
I'm hurt as hell I ain't gone lie— Mike Weber (@mikeweber25) February 5, 2015
The timing of the news is certainly curious to say the least.