Report: Everett Withers Gets James Madison Job

By DJ Byrnes on December 19, 2013 at 3:05p
OSU Co-Defensive Coordinator, Everett Withers has reported that Ohio State co-defenisve coordinator and safeties coach Everett Withers will be named the head coach at James Madison.  

Ohio State said it could not confirm the report and phone messages left by Eleven Warriors with James Madison have not been returned.

The Buckeye defense has been under fire much of the season, and in particular the safeties. The group has never recovered since losing senior leader Christian Bryant in late September. Ohio State ranks 104th nationally in pass defense, giving up nearly 260 yards through the air per game. 

Withers is well respected within the coaching community and one of Ohio State's top recruiters. He received praise in February after a full-court press late in the recruiting process led to the commitment of five-star safety Vonn Bell. 

Withers' base salary at Ohio State is $585,000 per year. Former James Madison head coach Mickey Matthews made $222,000.

This would be Withers’ first stint as a full-time head coach, though he did serve as the interim coach at North Carolina in 2011. He posted a 7-6 record with the Tar Heels and led them to the Independence Bowl. They chose to pass over Withers for the permanent position and he was quickly hired by Ohio State and Urban Meyer.

Withers has coached at the college level for 19 seasons with another seven being spent in the NFL. Eleven of his 19 years in college have been as a defensive coordinator and 16 coaching the defensive backfield.

During his four-year stint at North Carolina, Withers built the Tar Heel defense into one of the nation’s best. In 2008, the team’s 20 intercepted ranked eighth nationally and set a school record. The following season they ranked sixth in total defense, 10th against the run and 14th in pass defense. In 2011, they were 14th against the run.

North Carolina had five defenders taken in the 2011 NFL draft, including first-rounder Robert Quinn.

Withers interviewed at Southern Miss last year, but the job went to Todd Monken.

Earlier: Everett Withers among three finalists for JMU job.


Comments Show All Comments

droessl's picture

Virginia Tech tight ends coach

If you can't beat 'em, join 'em! 

trock's picture

Are there any 2014 recruits that Withers is the main recruiter with that we are still going after? 

Jordan Wagner's picture

There are a few guys a little further down the board like Mike Rogers, Terrence Alexander and Dominick Sanders. I don't think his loss would have much effect on 2014 recruiting. Hiring a new coach could actually connect us to more prospects. The staff appears to want Lattimore, Smith and another DB (tons of guys being looked at).

chirobuck's picture

another DB that surprises me, with the took 5 last year not counting Lee or Worley either of which could end up at the star, and 4 more this year I figured they would call it good  


^ best post ever ^

BtownBuckeye's picture

A lot of DBs are versatile meaning they can play other positions/ special teams, hence more defensive backs.

d5k's picture

Plus Bogard moving to LB and maybe another guy could do that too.

+1 HS
buckskin's picture

Great coach and would be a good hire for JMU.  If he gets the job, here's wishing him the best.

-1 HS
Buckeye Chuck's picture

Since Withers seems like the "most qualified" in a resume sense, I think the question is how badly he really wants to be a head coach. At his age (50, a year older than his boss), the top job at James Madison is probably not going to be the stepping stone to much else, maybe a lower-tier ACC job if he's successful. As bad as Southern Miss is right now, that's historically a place where you can win, and is on a higher level than JMU.
He might regard what he's doing now as something of a career finishing point, and there are worse fates for a football coach. Of course, the flipside is that very few assistants have the kind of job security that allows them to turn down chances like this, and I doubt Withers has that kind of security, especially now.

The most "loud mouth, disrespect" poster on 11W.

TMac's picture

Withers made what, $580,000 as Co-Defensive Coordinator, and James Madison was paying under $300,000 for their last HC...... Much like FAU, I just don't think schools like this can offer an incentive to leave. Yes, it could be "your" team, but if you don't win you're stuck there, or they fire you.....And what precedent is there to say anyone could win at James Madison?

ONE Not Done!

bethesdabuck's picture

Money goes a lot further in Harrisonburg, VA than Columbus, OH. That has to be taken into account. 

wpitt41's picture

It is hard to imagine taking a 280,000 dollar pay cut, but if it your goal to become a head coach you have to start from the bottom sometimes.


Zimmy07's picture

I wonder if he was asked to find another job?

+1 HS
Optimistic Buckeye Pessimist's picture

Curious isn't it?

Read my entire screen name....

+1 HS
CC's picture

I have asked people who work for me to start looking. It allows them to search with confidence while also clearing the deck for new staff. It was the first thing I thought when I read the salary numbers. There had to be a bunch of pressure around the defense. Who knows maybe it is just a move to be hc.

+1 HS
osupolo's picture

Sounds like he was. Hopefully urban will hire Bowling Green's D coordinator to replace Withers.

Earle's picture

I honestly don't know how to feel about this.  I wish the best for Withers in his career, be it at Ohio State or elsewhere.  I just don't know if him leaving would help solve the D's multiple personality disorder, or makes things worse.  I guess it depends on how much of the blame rightly falls on Fickell, which we just might get a chance to find out if Withers leaves.

Snarkies gonna snark. 

Boxley's picture

I look at it a  a win win, He moves on to be a HC, we get to find someone who can coach the secondary that is maybe better at it. After this year he was on the block to go anyway. This way no harm, no foul, moving on.

"...the man who really counts in the world is the doer, not the mere critic-the man who actually does the work, even if roughly and imperfectly, not the man who only talks or writes about how it ought to be done." President T. Roosevelt

ATXbucknut's picture

It's a done deal, reportedly...

buck-I.8's picture

Good for him. As far as the team, I'm not sure the secondary's problem is that we need a new safeties coach, we may just need new safeties. 

FROMTHE18's picture

I hold Withers responsible for choosing to play Pitt Brown.

buck-I.8's picture

Over guys that may not be ready, and thus wouldn't do any better? None of us have much insight on what goes on at the WHAC. The only sure thing is that we don't exactly have an embarassment of riches at the position at the moment.

bucknasty13's picture

Exactly.  I'm sure the coaches are putting the best available players on the field.

buck-I.8's picture

There are so many assumptions that get made when we start outright blaming coaches for different issues. That's why Fickell gets all the flack for giving up points, and Withers gets blamed for Brown being sub-par, and Herman gets blamed for a play-call that he didn't make. Sometimes its better to relax, and let the people with the influence use it. 

FROMTHE18's picture

Brown is subpar because Brown isnt a good player. I dont blame Withers for his lack of development. Brown has been in the program forever and failed to live up to his lofty expectations. In fact, he didnt even come close to them. As Safeties coach and Co-DC, Withers is responsible for the personnel he puts back in the Safety positions, and in this case he made a poor decision to not only start Brown, but to play him the majority of the time.
This is in response to the post above whilst my comment below is in response to the higher topic.

Kaceybrown's picture

You sure you're not just talking to yourself?

cplunk's picture

How do you know Withers starting Brown was a poor decision? Have you been watching the other players in practice? Do you know, for a fact, that there was a better option? Or do you just assume there was? 

cuttyrock's picture

I always thought Pitt Brown as a wr. I remember him at the Army All American game make a spectacular touchdown catch. I was excited to see him play wr. He never seemed like he was physically and mentally ready. Urban even said he wanted Vonn Bell playing more in season in a presser. When that didn't happen I thought that is weird. Urban says play him and you don't then you better be right or prepared to look for a new job.

Crimson's picture

You're probably thinking of the other Corey Brown, but I agree with the rest.

FROMTHE18's picture

surely youd prefer to have a freshman struggle than a 5th year senior? Why not benefit the younger guys with some experience and lessons rather than playing a guy who has reached the 'finished product' stage of his development. If youre going to be terrible, you might as well be terrible with an eye towards future improvement rather than just accepting the fact you are terrible and not benefit from any of it down the line. 

buck-I.8's picture

Ok, but no coordinator just is given free reign to make decisions without having to answer to anyone else. If you're saying that Withers isn't a good enough coach to make a (purely hypothetical) judgement that playing Bell now would be more pragmatic than playing Brown, then tacitly, you're saying that neither is Meyer.

FROMTHE18's picture

The position coach has the majority of the decision making power in terms of who he thinks better benefits the unit. My argument is that you look at Browns production and you have to wonder why he received so much playing time. In this instance a lot of the blame falls on Withers as he is not only the Safeties coach but also Co-DC. Good head coaches trust their staff, and thus allow them some 'free reign' when making personnel decisions. Meyer has never been a guy to shy away from playing capable freshman, especially if the experienced starter doesnt produce. IMO, Vonn Bell is a monster on special teams and tackles very well, whereas Pitt Brown has been essentially garbage whether in coverage or when attempting to tackle someone. There has been rumor that Bell will not only see significant time in the Orange Bowl (to get him experience for the future) but also may start over Pitt Brown. IMO, this shows that all of the talk from Meyer about changes with the defense is finally starting to turn into something tangible. Now, is this because Withers has finally turned the corner and thought logically about playing Bell over Pitt Brown? Maybe. But I think it has more to do with Meyer getting fed up with the poor production from older players when he could get the same, if not better, production from a young player who could also use the experience to help the team next year. I find it hard to believe that Withers wanted to play Bell and that Meyer felt that Pitt Brown gives us the better chance to win, in a sense overriding Withers decision, particularly in games like Illinois and Michigan. What appears more likely is that Withers made the Pitt Brown call and have left the majority of people, including Meyer, confused as to why during later parts of the year when it became obvious Pitt Brown's presence on the field actually hurt the defense. 

buck-I.8's picture

My argument is that you look at Browns production and you have to wonder why he received so much playing time.

This is exactly my point. There is a reason why he played. We don't know what that reason is, and speculating about it is utterly useless. My point is, obviously he was out there for a reason, and whether it was the right decision or not, we don't know any of the factors surrounding it, and if two guys that are far more qualified than you or me, with information that you and I don't have, then there is no reason why you or I should be making totalizing statements about the quality of one person's work. Recognize that I am not defending nor condemning Coach Withers, I'm simply saying there's no reason to make conclusions on what we don't know. Look at the fact that he made a decision that he, not us, had the intel on, his superior --someone we all consider as one of the top in his profession-- approved it, and then an AD looked at his body of work and deemed it quality enough for a head coaching job, which is prestigious and difficult to attain, no matter what level of competition. I'm not even really arguing with you, I'm simply wondering what qualifies any of us (the uninformed fanbase) to make totalizing conclusions about matters about which we really know very little. 

FROMTHE18's picture

...speculating about it is utterly useless."

What exactly do you think fan websites are for? Speculation, objection, overall opinion and valid arguments. None of us have 100% certainty as to what really is happening but providing a perspective, regardless of how ridiculous it may seem, provides discussion and thats what these avenues (fan websites) are for: providing a forum for all of us to share our views. You disagree and I completely respect and appreciate your opinion; however, dont degrade the value of speculation as that is what fuels these sites.

buck-I.8's picture

My opinion: Basing your opinion of a coach by the assumption that he is doing a certain thing wrong, even though you don't have access to anywhere close to the totality of the available information is not an example of constructive speculation. I respect your opinion, however, and we will agree to disagree on the core of the issue. 

FROMTHE18's picture

outside of staff, who here has access to a totality of information involving OSU football? I think developing opinions based on available material is really the best we can do. Differing opinions is a good thing here and to that, I tip my hat to you sir.

BSTP DeCon's picture

I'm good friends with one of the o lineman on the team. But when I relayed a couple messages on here that he stated to me personally without dropping his name (we aren't the only ones to read this site), I got downvoted like no other. Can't say I want to make the same mistake twice.

cuttyrock's picture

Only thing I could think of was Brown is a practice player. Makes a lot of plays in practice but game time the nerves kick in and he doesn't play well. Brown sometimes looks like a deer in headlights on defense. I still think he would've been a better wr imo.

st pete bch buckeye's picture

Getting beat all day?  How could the young guys do worse?  I expect we'll see Bell in the bowl game.

logamaniac's picture

In regards to putting the best on the field. That's exactly what I'm sure he did in his estimation but as bad as the secondary was how do you not take more chances by subbing in some other guys and see how they actually play. Just because you think you're right about a guy doesn't mean you are. You gotta get them involved. 

45has2's picture

Knock one down at the PCI for me.

"I don't like nice people. I like tough, honest people." -W.W. Hayes

Oakland Buckeye's picture

Which seems contradictory as Withers was the closer on Bell.

buck-I.8's picture

Withers was very involved with his recruitment, but Urban was as much if not more instrumental in finishing.

osu07asu10's picture

1.) Congrats  Coach Withers
2.) Thanks for your contributions! Once a buckeye, always a buckeye. Good luck!!!!

CJDPHoS Board of Directors // Best friends with Homey Hache

The 0 is silent.

TheBadOwl's picture

Most definitely. I'm happy for him, and I hope he does great things at JMU.

When I walked in this morning and saw the flag was at half mast I thought, "Alright, another bureaucrat ate it." but then I saw it was Li'l Sebastian. Half mast is too high. Show some damn respect.

Jonnferrell's picture

Good luck, Coach Withers!  Thanks for helping with 24 straight wins!  That's something that really helps on a resume.  

"I miss Brady Hoke."

Baroclinicity's picture

Best of luck, Coach Withers!!

When you're holding a hammer, everything looks like a nail.

Alpo's picture

Congrats coach, thanks for your time here and recruiting skills. Best of luck to him.

Dublin68's picture

Great News and Congratulate to him.  I hope Fickell is next and UFM can get a new def Coordinator,
In regards to hurting in the recruiting, the players will come to play for Urban Frank Meyer!!!!! and The Ohio state University, I think we will be ok with recruiting...

cuttyrock's picture

I would like Chuck Heater, Greg Mattison, if Fickell leaves. Travaris Robinson, Tim McDonald, Kendrick Shaver, and Bill Busch as a potential safeties coach. I thought Florida's db played pretty well.

fear_the_nut70's picture

Let's not sound like Texas fans in search of a head coach.
We don't get whoever we want because we are Ohio State.  No way Mattison leaves his current position to coach for us (and I know about his relationship with Meyer in the past).

toad1204's picture

GL coach.  Best of Luck and hope to go head to head one day.

Nothing like dancing on the field in 02... 

DefendYoungstown's picture

Does this make Fickell the sole DC???

What we can't do in the air we'll do on the ground.

Optimistic Buckeye Pessimist's picture

That's my guess.  I'm guessing the guy we bring in will be a young, brilliant unknown who will be molded, groomed and rise through the ranks at OSU to replace Fickell when he decides to make his jump.

Read my entire screen name....

st pete bch buckeye's picture

No. Please god no.  We need one defensive coordinator

cronimi's picture

True, true. But I think he was referring to bringing a young guy as safeties coach, but grooming him to eventually be DC. Hopefully NOT another co-DC.

Optimistic Buckeye Pessimist's picture

Yes, sorry, I didn't come out and say it, but yes, bring in a young unknown to coach safeties only.  Let him get familiar with the system and the scheme and groom him to replace to Fickell who will inevitably move on to coach his own team.

Read my entire screen name....

Boxley's picture

Frankly, that thought is rather optimistic of you....................

"...the man who really counts in the world is the doer, not the mere critic-the man who actually does the work, even if roughly and imperfectly, not the man who only talks or writes about how it ought to be done." President T. Roosevelt

ChazBuckeye's picture

I thought this was funny and good ironic humor....why do so many here dv something that's supposed to be humorous??? I say its because too many are oversensitive. Go to the funny bone from time to time, it may help the stick up your asses, just saying. And here they come in 3....2....1 ----------

Some people think we’re the hunted.I don’t feel that way at all.We’re the hunter.Everybody wants an angry football team.Everybody wants a team on edge and a hungry team.If you’re a hunter,that usually equates to being hungry.

kgab11's picture

I think they hire a true Defensive Coordinator and Fickell gets a lesser role but keeps the Co-Defensive Coordinator title. 

osupolo's picture

I agree 100%. 

bucknasty13's picture

Congrats Coach...oh exuse me, Head Coach.

USMC11917's picture

I wish the best of luck to him.
I am curious if Withers is the coach in question that was viewed as not being on the same page as the rest of the staff-or in which ever words Urban used to describe it in that interview he did. I am not sure this really hurts our team defensively. Anybody have any insight?

4thandinches's picture

Good for him. Hopefully this 'who is in charge of the defense?' can be gone now. Not saying he was a bad coordinator but it seems like Fickell will be calling all the shots on D from here out. Interesting to see next year, if Fickell is making all the calls, if how many have felt about his coaching is true. 

I wasn't born a Buckeye but I became one as fast as I could. 

Hovenaut's picture

Best of luck to Coach Withers on his future endeavor.

Go1Bucks's picture

If he goes, then we need to spare no expense for a great DC to replace him.  One with a proven record of great D that we have come to expect in Columbus.  That means no DCs from the porous SEC or ACC.  They thrive on big points like we have this year.  
Any ideas who can fit that bill? I can think of a couple, but not sure they would come back to the college ranks. 

Go Bucks!

buck-I.8's picture

So if DJ Durkin wanted to coach the defense you'd tell him no? Questionable logic, there.

Go1Bucks's picture

yes, i would say no.  my logic isnt questionable, it happens to be my opinion. you don't have to like or dv just because you dont agree. the comment alone is enough.  this isnt yahoo

Go Bucks!

buck-I.8's picture

I know it's your opinion. Just for clarity's sake, though, can we confirm that you would turn down one of the nation's top DCs because of the conference in which he coaches (one known for strong competition)? Is that right? 

Go1Bucks's picture

Im saying that I dont agree that he is one of the top DC's for OSU.  He doesnt live up to my standards.  But in answering my question, you provided a name, which I appreciate, just wish I could hear more names on the subject. Cool?

Go Bucks!

buck-I.8's picture

Is Kirby Smart a top DC? What if he wanted to come to OSU? Bud Foster?

NCBuckeye1's picture

Just pony up the money and hire Narduzzi away from MSU. And when I say money, I mean ALL OF THE MONIES!

"Without winners, there wouldn't even be civilization." -- Woody

buckeyedude's picture




Boomcat's picture

We are soon going to find out whether it was Fickell or somebody else that was to blame for the pass D struggles. If Fick stays as D coordinator, then we know it wasn't him. If Urbz moves him to only a LB coach and brings in a new coordinator altogether, then we know it was most likely him that was the problem.
Before you bash me with the stuff about our secondary players just not being very good, keep in mind that these are the same guys that were heavily recruited by Tress. 

Youngbuck85's picture

Almost as exciting as the kwon announcement.... Good riddance soft coverage


One thing is for certain. If the defense struggles again in 2014 with Fickell as the lone DC then everyone will know who's at fault. If it rebounds then we'll also know who was at fault for 2013.

"Sherman ran an option play right through the south" - Greatest Civil War analogy EVER.

andretolstoy's picture

No. Actually that is pretty elementary and shallow thinking on your part. Things just don't work that way.

buck-I.8's picture

This. Nothing happens in a vacuum. 

andretolstoy's picture

I just read a sports report that states Coach Fickell will retain Co-Defenseive Coordinator/LB's coach and Meyer will get a seasoned Defensive Co to call the plays.

Go1Bucks's picture

thats exactly what i was talking about - so back to my question, any thoughts on who?

Go Bucks!

buck-I.8's picture

If Charlie Strong happens to go to Texas, perhaps Bedford is an option. 

osupolo's picture

Mike Elko from BG. BG won a MAC championship by containing Jordan Lynch


My comment was more towards the belief that Fickell and Withers clashed with their styles and that I've been trying to understand how we can have such great players and still struggle on D. If the D improves with Fickell as the main DC in 2014 then we know that conflict was true and that Withers leaving is for the best. If it regresses even further (which would cause a meltdown) then we will realize Withers might not have been the issue. trust me, I want to give Fickell the benefit of the doubt. These great recruiting classes Meyer is getting can only help Fickell. But even the most ardent of supporters loses their patience after a while.

"Sherman ran an option play right through the south" - Greatest Civil War analogy EVER.

cronimi's picture

Exactly. The co-coordinators seemed like a bad idea at the beginning, and I'm yet to be convinced otherwise. Stick with one DC and let that person take all the credit/blame for the defense's performance.

andretolstoy's picture

Buckeye nation loses another son, college football gains another great coach! God's blessings Coach!

TMac's picture

Bets of Luck @ JMU Coach Withers!!

ONE Not Done!

otrain2416's picture

Anyone know if he's gonna coach in the bowl?

We were born to love Ohio State and hate that team up north.

buck-I.8's picture

The protocol is almost always that unless they are fired, departing coaches coach in the bowl games. 

Buckeyebrowny919's picture

In the grand scheme of coaching gigs....I don't see that is a logical move for him, but c'est la vie. Good luck, Mr. Withers!

To give anything less than your best, is to sacrifice the gift - Steve Prefontaine

WhySoSerious's picture

Na na na hey hey hey good bye. 


Like the ball in the stands, we balls out

WhySoSerious's picture

Bye bye!


Like the ball in the stands, we balls out

WhySoSerious's picture

But guys lol.. Go ahead love the pass defense the last 2 years. I won't you shouldn't. Give me a break. 


Like the ball in the stands, we balls out

BME_Buckeye's picture

Na na na, na na na, hey hey hey, have a downvote.

Look closely, because the closer you think you are, the less you will actually see.


WhySoSerious's picture

Omg a down vote! Who cares, I celebrated a coaches departure with a song and received 50 plus down votes smh. 
To everyone who down voted me, you hungry have a snickers cause you start handing out down votes like its nothing.. 


Like the ball in the stands, we balls out

FitzBuck's picture

I still love Withers because he landed OSU Vonn Bell and gave us some of the greatest meltdowns the internet has ever seen in the process.  UT boards were never so good.  

Fitzbuck | Toledo - Ohio's right armpit | "A troll by any other name is still a troll".

droessl's picture

If nothing else, thanks for Vonn Bell!! Best of luck at JMU, and keep beating the Hokies.

gbdawg's picture

Good Luck Everett

WOLFofOHIO's picture

ill miss him..once a buckeye always a buckeye is spot on...good luck everett.

there is no greater joy than watching Michigan get slammed. in anything

jkrk's picture

I can honestly say I didn't expect a Ponyo gif in this thread.

teddyballgame's picture

I didn't expect anyone else to even know what that was. 

sharks's picture

Next man up?

A man got to have a code...

RedStorm45's picture

He just put in a bunch of time recruiting McMillan (and others, right?).  Let's save the celebratory posts for a later date.  Best of luck to a class guy who represented the program well.

dlb72osu's picture

According to previous post, Fickell put in all the time on McMillan, then UFM closed the deal at the 11th hour.

I am the master of my fate: I am the captain of my soul.

- Invictus

nrbuckguy's picture

Congrats, Coach Withers! Hopefully we find a solid replacement for him that meshes better with Fickell's defensive philosophy while at least coming close to Wither's production in recruiting. Excited to see if this secondary can take a step forward next year (Give CB a medical redshirt!!!!).

In Urban We Trust

Optimistic Buckeye Pessimist's picture

There are some very "pick-able" schools on this list....

Read my entire screen name....

FROMTHE18's picture

Most criticism is not personal nor directed at Withers' character. It is mainly at the poor performance of the defense. Completely understand those that are bothered by some people being happy, but at the same time I think for those that wanted change and got it can enjoy it. This opens the door for a more aggressive defense that will use our athleticism to the fullest. He did a nice job recruiting and im sure everyone is grateful. Now, lets get back to having the D play like Silver Bullets. 

Optimistic Buckeye Pessimist's picture

Yea, but those people should at least wait until the body is cold, respects have been paid, and out of sight or under ground before they start bad-mouthing him.

Read my entire screen name....

FROMTHE18's picture

Why? The guy isnt dead. Its college sports. Its a two headed evaluation: recruiting and coaching. Recruiting is essential and incredibly valuable, but being able to develop those players and help the team become better is the key in their profession. He is a fantastic recruiter but IMO, an average coach. Theres a difference between criticism and just bad-mouthing. People's frustrations are based on criticizing the fact that our defense has been historically awful. Its the defensive coaches, primarily the coordinators, which he is 1/2 of, that have produced arguably the worst defense Ohio State has ever had. In that respect, any complaints about him as a coach are validated through the product (if thats what you even want to call it) on the field. 

Optimistic Buckeye Pessimist's picture

Yea....the 24-1 product. I'm not saying that it was all him, but who knows where the team would have been without him and he was, undeniably, a part of this team and the same team that was 24-1.  
You and I will actually never know why this defense was as bad as it was/is.  To act like we're in the know about the defensive problems, and, furthermore, to project blame onto a coach that gave his all to this team is disrespectful.  I know there have been articles, blogs, and posts that encourage us to reflect on this historic run we've had, both in recent years and over the past decade.  People that feel the need to celebrate his departure with good riddance really need to appreciate these articles and their sentiment so that we, as a fanbase, can stop coming off as entitled and better than everyone else.  We've been fortunate and are fortunate to have experienced what we have and I think we need to recognize this and act like we know this.

Read my entire screen name....

coloradobuckeye's picture

Good luck Coach.  It will be tough to win with a one man team... at least William & Mary can run the option. :)

Let your hobbies and interests supplement your life, not be the main course.

ATXbucknut's picture

There must be more story here. Either the report of Withers to JMU is premature/erroneous, or he is being pushed out of the OSU program (is he most at fault for our awful pass defense?)

BuckeyeRick's picture

$222,000 was the BASE salary of the last coach. Who is to say they wouldn't be spending more on a current coach. Incentives could also play into the salary. After all, Urban Meyer's BASE salary is around $700,000. It's all the other stuff that makes the bulk of his salary.

ATXbucknut's picture

I see your point, but FCS JMU can't get anywhere near what Withers is making in base or gross salary at OSU. There's more to this story...

buck-I.8's picture

Maybe he's like many people and realizes that 220k is still a ridiculously high yearly salary and is more than enough to live comfortably on? Not everyone needs to be banking half a million to be satisfied in their career.

ATXbucknut's picture

You could be right. I know $220K would do me just fine.

CC's picture

Some of us would say 220 isn't a ridiculous amount of money. Once taxes are taken into account it isn't that much. Either way it's less that half of what he was making.

m4's picture

Coach Withers wants to be a head coach; this is not the first time he has interviewed for a head coaching position during his short time at OSU. After the 2012 season, he interviewed for the USM vacancy.

buck-I.8's picture

It is also important to not underestimate the impact of "head coaching experience" on a coach's resume when positions open up. 

HandsOfSweed's picture

Bingo, Buck-I8. I can tell you from personal experience that you are absolutely correct. Although, I strongly suspect that we both speak from the same frame of reference.

buck-I.8's picture

Probably, I'm working an unpaid internship on Capitol Hill for the next six months. If I turned out every job offer that didn't offer me the financial benefits that I idealize, I'd get nowhere. 

HandsOfSweed's picture

I was way off! I thought that I was talking to another football coach! D'oh! But you're right, nonetheless.

d5k's picture

Note Urban's career path after he became a HC:
2 years at BG making ~250k
2 years at Utah making 1M
4 years at Florida making 3-4M
3 decades at OSU making 4M
See what I did there?

FROMTHE18's picture

its the same as Fickell interviewing for essentially the same position (for probably less pay) at ND. Meyer hath spoken, and I believe their time at OSU was over. Meyer wants SEC defense, not soft zone and horrible tackling. 

causeicouldntgo43's picture

Good luck EW.
Is Beth Mowins available?

DannyBeane's picture

Yes, but only to coach Rod Jones.

740buckeye's picture

She may be instrumental in convincing Braxton Oliver to stay!

GA_bucki's picture

Good luck to Corch Withers. Moving forward, we need ONE coordinator. Whether thats Fickel or someone else. We have to have a singular identity on D. Assuming no other departures I'd like to see this guy get brought in to coach safeties

Richard McNutt, former DB under Tress. Experience in the pros (Browns) and several D-1 programs. His profile from his current position at Northern Illinois is here:

Go1Bucks's picture

He definitely shows great promise and insight.

Go Bucks!

buck-I.8's picture

Do you have some numbers on his success at other schools? The only stat I have offhand is that NIU was worse than us in pass D this year, and they play in the MAC.

SaltyD0gg's picture

McNutt for Heisman!

Pain of Discipline

Pain of Regret

Take Your Pick

MichaelJ721984's picture

I'll never forget the huge 'McNUTT FOR HEISMAN' banner at that house just off campus LOL  I can't remember what street that was on but I can still picture that house...

Michigan sucks.

OSUEXT's picture

For the collective's information: McNutt was the Cornerbacks coach at NC State this year.

buck-I.8's picture

Good find, I see now that the original profile was dated. NC State's passing defense was ranking 43rd this year.

GA_bucki's picture

My bad, good catch. NC State's profile has a little more info as far as statistical improvements under his tutelage. Thought he might be a viable option as safeties coach if Fick stays at DC

Nick's picture


THER HIGHLIGHTS: As a coach - The Northern Illinois secondary showed considerable improvement in its second season under the direction of McNutt. In 2011, Northern Illinois ranked 89th nationally in passing defense, but improved to 41st in 2012 giving up 217.7 yards through the air per game. The Huskies also improved in interceptions, ranking 43rd in 2011, but improving to 23rd this past season with 15 on the year. At Kent State, the Golden Flashes boasted the No. 1 total defense in the MAC in 2010 and ranked second in the league in pass efficiency defense. Spent the 2008 football season on the staff of the Cleveland Browns, where he coached the safeties, assisted with the defensive backs and served as assistant special teams coach. The Browns ranked second in the NFL in interceptions with 23 that season. At W&J, helped the Presidents to a 12-1 record and the third round of the NCAA Division III Playoffs in 2004, as Washington & Jefferson ranked second in the nation with 26 interceptions. W&J posted a 9-2 record and advanced to the playoffs in 2005. As a student assistant with Ohio State in 2003, he assisted with the cornerbacks and special teams and was a member of the staff that led OSU to an 11-2 record and a victory in the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl.

thatlillefty's picture

That's a pretty solid profile.

Buckeye Chuck's picture

Pretty sure McNutt had a grad assistant stint here when his playing days were over -- knew he wanted to be a coach at a very early stage. So Fickell should have pretty good insight into whether he has what it takes.

The most "loud mouth, disrespect" poster on 11W.

jkrk's picture

Even if Fickell doesn't think McNutt has what it takes, there's little evidence to suggest that he could stop him.

EDUGOON's picture

I think we should look into the SEC or PAC-12 to find a proven D-Coord to replace EW. Someone that can give this group of men on DEF a true identity. Any thought's who may be on the early shortlist?

"We Don't Believe You, You Need More People"- Hova #GOBUCKS #FreeElGuapo #Famthik

Enzo's picture

My worry here is that Fickell becomes the only DC. Yikes.

Kaceybrown's picture

We don't know that Fickell was the problem. Maybe he didn't get to run the defense the way he wanted, and maybe he will now. Maybe he gets another job somewhere else and it doesn't even matter...

d5k's picture

Exactly, we really don't know anything.  And Ross's analysis suggests to me that the biggest problem is the lack of a single identity on defense that fits what the personnel can execute.  I would be just fine with going back to the full-on Heacock style with the stud edge rushers providing pressure with just the front 4 next year along with 3rd down zone blitzing.

Kaceybrown's picture

I wish they never went away from it

Kaceybrown's picture

I'd like to see Durkin from Florida come join Meyer again. I don't know likely that is though considering he's also a LB coach and Fickell currently holding that position

rkylet83's picture

Good for him.  I hope he does really well at JMU!  Hopefully we get a really good replacement!

BassDropper's picture

Tia is the best newt all week, and that does include the commits.  Withers was the real problem if you want t blame the coaches, but Luke will be the scapegoat because of his head coaching job. Our defense was great before Withers. Our LBers were vey under red this year (Luke coaches LBers) our Secondary cad god awful (Withers coaches DBS)


tennbuckeye19's picture

Just think, Withers had to interview with this guy to get the job. To be a fly on the wall.

SPreston2001's picture

Well im happy he got a HC opportunity. Hopefully we can get someone who can coach the secondary up and play man coverage lol!!

smith5568's picture

Good luck to coach Withers. 
Taver Johnson is a name that comes to mind as a replacement. 

Bobcat04's picture

Woo Hoo!!  The door to a better defense is starting to open up!

Crumb's picture

This is just wishful thinking but how about we try to lure Dick LeBeau away from the Steelers, he's a Buckeye, a good defensive coach, and we'd have an identity. Plus it would be a hire celebrated all along the I-71 corridor.

"The only good thing about it is winning the d*** thing" - Urban Meyer on The Game The War

andretolstoy's picture

You don't get hired or retained by Meyer for Ohio State by being a bad coach or not knowing what you're doing. If that happens, the fault is almost entirely on the one who hires you. I'm not buying this at all ...
The problem was a combination of lack of players in the right positions and lack of leadership, with perhaps with two big coaching egos bumping heads. 
If things get better next year it won't be because either Luke or Everett were bad or good over the over, but that one identity will take over.
It's a good thing because it seemed toxic both for the team and for the fan base. 
Good luck to Head Coach Withers

Seattle Linga's picture

Good luck fine sir - we will miss you and................."don't be a stranger"

Johnny_Buck71's picture

I wish Coach Withers well, he's a Buckeye! I feel like I never got to see him much though and get to know him.
From the above discussion, I somehow got the impression that he was responsible for play calling on D. Is that true?  

A nickel ain't worth a dime anymore. - Yogi Berra

Wesleyburgess1's picture

If coach Withers is a Buckeye for life because of 2 years here...then so is Nick Sabin. He was here for a couple years back in the 80's. Just saying lol

I actually don't really care you is at fault for this season, I just want it fixed as soon as possible.

Dublin68's picture

Per Tim May
Ohio State co-DC Everett Withers to FCS James Madison as head coach in negotiation stage, I'm told, including salary upgrade on JMU end.

Jbucks's picture

Well it looks like Meyer found a way to fix a problem, but who takes over? I personally wouldnt mind seeing Meyer bring in Shawn Springs as a Safties coach (someone on Bucknuts had suggested that Meyer was in contact...Grain of salt) & Bringing in an Actual DC who calls the plays and has the final say on all things Defense... Mel Tucker, Lovie Smith your choice haha, now on to getting rid of coombs

Light shines in the darkness and the darkness has not overcome it-John 1:5 SEC meet Ohio State, Ohio State meet SEC

sivaDavis's picture

If Pitt Brown was struggling that bad, you're telling me you wouldn't throw in Vonn Bell? Or put Tyvis there and let Vonn run star? I have to disagree. Even if Vonn wasn't nearly ready, that's about the same level of ready Pitt was. Just sayin.

"I've had smarter people around me all my life, but I haven't run into one yet that can outwork me. And if they can't outwork you, then smarts aren't going to do them much good." - Woody Hayes

buck-I.8's picture

That's all pure speculation

NitroBuck's picture

Best of luck to Coach Withers at JMU.  I truly hope he does well.
Possible replacement?  Teryl Austin, DB coach of the Baltimore Ravens, and has worked for UFM at Florida.

Ferio.  Tego.

buckguyfan1's picture

Relax, Urbz has a plan.

Bamabucknut's picture

I think this is the first of several decisions among OSU defensive coaches to pursue other opportunities.

OurHonorDefend09's picture

Could this defensive struggle be due to Withers and Urban possibly told him it is probably best if they went their separate ways? 
Just a theory. I haven't been able to put my finger on what's going with the defense all year, so maybe it's more Withers than Fickell. Like I said, just a theory. Good luck to him, either way.

Don't give up... Don't ever give up.

teddyballgame's picture

If Fickell is in over his head w/ DC then I trust Urban will relocate him to another position/title.  The guy is 100% buckeye though and a proven great recruiter.  He adds value to the program for sure, just need to figure out where he best fits.

741's picture

Thank god the Buckeyes are not lead by this 11W peanut gallery.

dlb72osu's picture

LMAO; that is a very comical, yet so true, observation of the state of buckeye Nation as presented on this post. But, 741, every one of these posts have only the best intentions for the OSU football team.
"...not lead by this 11W peanut gallery". Too funny!

I am the master of my fate: I am the captain of my soul.

- Invictus

joshsummers02's picture

I saw someone on 247 bring up a guy who worked under Urban Meyer at Florida.  He seems like a good candidate if UFM can pry him away from the NFL again.

"It's not that I'm so smart, it's just that I stay with problems longer."  - Albert Einstein

wpitt41's picture

First of all, I wish Coach Withers great success and happiness.  
But I had forgotten that he interviewed for a position last year. I wonder if that didn't sit well with Urban because of his 2 year stay agreement among his coaching staff (handshake deal). We will probably never know, would be interesting to know what really happens inside the WHAC.


Crimson's picture

He wasn't the only one to interview, and I think UFM knew about it.  Fickell also interviewed for Pitt.  They were likely both getting experience of interviewing for a HC position.  No worries.

216ToThe614's picture

No one has mentioned this, but what about somehow bringing back Taver Johnson? He put up some good results coaching DB's, and you can't blame him for taking more money elsewhere after Tresselgate happened. I would love to see him return and coach the secondary

Pick up your feet, turn your corners square! And DRIVE DRIVE DRIVE!!!

DenBuck's picture

Certainly no expert but Taver Is pretty highly thought of. Not sure if there is a relationship with Urban though...good thought. 

Buckeye For Life

harleymanjax's picture

I didn't even know James Madison had a football team!

"Because I couldn't go for 3"


They beat VaTech a few years ago.

"Sherman ran an option play right through the south" - Greatest Civil War analogy EVER.

BoFuquel's picture

Best wishes Coach, and thanks. I know we only won 24 in a row while you were here, but thanks anyway. GO BUCKS!

I wish I didn't know now what I didn't know then.

ChazBuckeye's picture

Good luck Everett. I want a good assistant defensive coach for Xmas please;-) To replace him of course

Some people think we’re the hunted.I don’t feel that way at all.We’re the hunter.Everybody wants an angry football team.Everybody wants a team on edge and a hungry team.If you’re a hunter,that usually equates to being hungry.

BamaBuckeye144's picture

This is an opportunity to make a great hire. I trust Urban to do just that. He's shown he can get good coaches at multiple programs and I see no reason to believe that will change. Hires don't always work out, but Meyer has a nose for talent. Here's wishing Coach Withers all the best at JMU.