By Rick Horrow and Karla Swatek
December 2, 2011
After weeks of speculation, Urban Meyer officially agreed to become the next football coach at Ohio State University. Meyer’s contract is for $24 million over six years, making him one of the five highest-paid coaches in college football. His deal includes such benefits as a golf membership, private aircraft use and an auto stipend.
Of course, jobs like Ohio State don’t usually become available without another coach being let go. In Meyer’s case, interim coach Luke Fickell is being demoted to an assistant role. Additionally, coaches at Arizona State, Illinois, Kansas, UCLA and several other schools were fired last weekend after their regular season ended. In response to being let go, ex-UCLA coach Rick Neuheisel said the Bruins need to do a better job of “financing their expectations.”
The end of the regular season is primetime for school’s to change coaches, so don’t be surprised to see more action. It remains to be seen how Meyer’s decision to jump back into coaching will affect his marketability. He’s loved in Columbus, but the rest of the country probably isn’t buying what Urban’s selling.