Tennessee football fans nixed the Volunteers’ attempt to hire Greg Schiano. Now, the Ohio State Buckeyes situation with Urban Meyer has proven them right.
Remember all the backlash Tennessee football fans received back in December for protesting the UT administration’s attempt to hire Greg Schiano? They were slammed for bringing up his connection to the Penn State scandal. It was unfair to him, according to many.
In fact, it got to the point that the program employing Schiano at the time, the Ohio State Buckeyes, came to his defense. Athletic director Gene Smith and head coach Urban Meyer both spoke in favor of their football program’s defensive coordinator.
Fast-forward eight months later. Meyer is on administrative leave for his alleged knowledge of a domestic violence incident involving one of his assistant coaches back in 2015. It would seem like Schiano is the most logical choice to replace him as acting head coach.
After all, Schiano has experience in the NFL and in college as a head coach. He was actually a very successful college coach relative to his competition with the Rutgers Scarlet Knights. And in addition to being arguably Meyer’s top assistant, he draws the praise of Bill Belichick.
However, Ohio State didn’t go that route. They placed Meyer on administrative leave and made co-offensive coordinator Ryan Day, who has never been a head coach to the position. This is where they’re going with a month left before preseason.
So if Schiano was so great for Tennessee football, why couldn’t Ohio State hire him as acting head coach? Why not go with the man who has “high integrity and character,” as Smith put it, and who actually has experience as a head coach. He’s certainly more qualified than Day Could it be, wait for it, that they also can’t afford to deal with the fallout from what he did or didn’t know in the Penn State scandal?
The only other person on the staff who rivaled Schiano’s qualifications to take the job was the other co-offensive coordinator, Kevin Wilson. But he had his own allegations of mistreating players back with the Indiana Hoosiers. On top of that, his career in college was far less successful than Schiano’s, he has no NFL experience, and as just a co-coordinator, he is lees up on the totem pole than Schiano. So nobody was more qualified than Schiano for the job. But Ohio State passed over him.
Let’s just go ahead and say it. The Buckeyes, who defended Schiano, are embroiled in a scandal involving their head coach now. And as a result, they have just as many reservations about Schiano as Tennessee football fans did. The difference? Vols fans got out ahead of the hire to make sure they wouldn’t be in a situation like this. And somehow they were slammed for it.