I completely agree that the Luke Fickell hate is way overblown. I just don't feel that you can compare those OSU teams to the North Carolina teams. First, Fickell had a lot of help in those years from a guy in Heacock who has been apart of some of the greatest defenses in college football history.
I also think Urban brought Withers in more for his recruiting in that area than anything. Withers had some amazing talent that wasn't always on the field because of all the trouble they were in. That defense was crazy talented with Robert Quinn, Marvin Austin, Quintin Coples, Zach Brown, Bruce Carter, Quan Sturdivant, Cam Thomas, Da Norris Searcy, and Deunta Williams. That secondary picked off 20 passes in 2008 and he also had plenty of NFL exp. I will say I was not impressed with the defense's performance while he was here, but I don't think it was a bad hire at the time. WIthers did well when he had talent and OSU has much more on a consistent basis. We scrapped the entire plan in the Secondary after his last season. So I don't think we can place all the blame from that year on one guy, or praise any one guy from the jump in rankings this year.