There have been 24 head coaches in the history of Ohio State football. Each has a story and legacy. This offseason, Land-Grant Holy Land’s new series 24 Club will help you get to know the coaches from past and present who built the program. Today we look at Ohio State’s 23rd head coach — Urban Meyer.
Name: Urban Meyer
Seasons Coached: 7 (2012-18)
Overall Record: 82-9
Where Does He Rank in the 24 Club?
Overall Wins: No. 4 out of 24 OSU Coaches
Winning Percentage: No. 2 out of 24 OSU Coaches
For the first time in a long while, the Ohio State program was on the ropes. Jim Tressel departed in the spring of 2011 in the wake of Tattoo Gate. Luke Fickell admirably stepped in as interim head coach, but the Buckeyes went 6-7, and ended the year on a four-game skid. Ohio State needed to turn things around. In stepped Urban Meyer.
Meyer was already a legend when he arrived on campus. He had coached Utah to an undefeated season in 2004, and won two national championships at Florida. It didn’t take Meyer long to get things going at Ohio State. The Buckeyes went 12-0 in 2012, and never looked back from there.
The unique feature of Urban Meyer’s tenure at Ohio State was the consistent dominant performance of his teams. He became the first coach in OSU history to win 10 games every season, and famously captured the 2014 national championship. Like Tressel, he continued the recent OSU tradition of pummeling Michigan. Meyer recorded a perfect 7-0 record against the Wolverines and became the first OSU coach to finish with an unblemished record against UM. Fittingly, his final game was a win in the Rose Bowl, and Meyer finished his career with the highest winning percentage of any coach in OSU history.
Meyer faced more challenges off the field than on the field during his final season. He was suspended for the first three games for mishandling domestic assault allegations against an assistant coach — and then suffered mounting health issues when he returned to the sideline. During Meyer’s suspension, offensive coordinator Ryan Day stepped in and led the Buckeyes to a 3-0 record.
With Meyer retired, Day now took over as head coach — poised to write the next chapter in Ohio State football history.