According to a report from Yahoo Sports’ Pete Thamel, Ohio State is set to hire former Iowa State head coach Paul Rhoads as a defensive analyst, a role in which he’ll assist the Buckeyes’ on-field coaches with scouting and game planning.
A former graduate assistant at Ohio State in 1991, the 54-year-old Rhoads was the Cyclones’ head coach from 2009-15. Before that, he was the defensive coordinator at Pittsburgh (2000-07) and Auburn (2008). After being fired by Iowa State, Rhoads spent time at Arkansas as the defensive coordinator and defensive backs coach from 2016-17, as the defensive backs coach at UCLA in 2018-19 and Arizona, where he was the defensive coordinator in 2020.
The addition of an analyst is new for Ohio State, thought it’s fairly common for big-time programs across the country to fill those kinds of roles with former head coaches who are in the market for another gig. Rhoads was not retained by the Wildcats when head coach Kevin Sumlin was fired at the end of last season.
Buckeyes head coach Ryan Day was asked about potentially added an experienced coach to the support staff during his press conference on Feb. 3, particularly as the Buckeyes look to replace the experience lost by former co-defensive coordinator Greg Mattison’s retirement.
“It’s something that I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about,” Day said.“Every program is different. You have to do what’s right for your program. Now that I’m going into (my third year as head coaching), taking a hard look at that and seeing if there are some people around who would be the right fit.
“I think the big thing for us is that it has to be the right fit, culturally. It has to be the right personality that brings the right things to the table. So, certainly, looking at all those things and over the next couple of weeks, we’ll have an opportunity to bring some guys in and possibly talk about those types of things.”
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