Texas Hires Ohio State Passing Game Coordinator and Quarterbacks Coach Mike Yurcich As Offensive Coordinator

By Dan Hope on December 29, 2019 at 6:32 pm
Mike Yurcich

Another Ohio State coordinator is leaving after just one season.

Ohio State passing game coordinator and quarterbacks coach Mike Yurcich is departing the Buckeyes to become the offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach at Texas, the Longhorns announced Sunday.

Yurcich replaces another former Ohio State coordinator and quarterbacks coach, Tim Beck, who lost his job as the Longhorns' offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach after three seasons.

He joins a staff led by another former Ohio State offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach, Tom Herman, who is entering his fourth season as Texas' head coach. Herman also recently hired former Ohio State defensive coordinator Chris Ash as his new defensive coordinator.

“I talked with a number of coaches as we tried to find the best fit at offensive coordinator, and Mike is a guy who really stood out,” Herman said in a news release. "I've admired his work for many years, he's very highly regarded and respected in the coaching world, and in talking at length with him, I was extremely impressed with what he'll bring to our staff. He knows our conference well from his time at Oklahoma State and, including the run he had with Ohio State this year, has played a big part in some of the nation's best offenses for the past several years. All of that said, what impresses me most about him is how he works with and develops players and the creative ways he utilizes all of his weapons on offense.”

In his lone season at Ohio State, Yurcich served as the primary position coach for Justin Fields and helped him become the Big Ten Offensive Player of the Year and a Heisman Trophy finalist while leading a Buckeyes offense that was among the most explosive in the country. For the season as a whole, Fields completed 67.2 percent of his passes for 3,273 yards and 41 touchdowns with only three interceptions while also running for 484 yards and 10 touchdowns.

That said, Ohio State head coach Ryan Day also continued to play an integral role in working with the Buckeyes' quarterbacks and served as the Buckeyes' primary play caller this season, leaving some doubt about how substantial Yurcich's role actually was in leading Ohio State's quarterback room and overall passing game.

At Texas, Yurcich will lead the Longhorns' offensive play calling efforts. Herman was involved in calling offensive plays during Beck's tenure at Texas – at times more primarily than others – but said recently he would delegate those duties to the Longhorns' new offensive coordinator.

“When looking at offensive coordinator positions, Texas is a no-brainer career move,” Yurcich said. “I'm excited to work with coach Herman and the entire staff. Having recruited the state of Texas, and having coordinated in the Big 12, I'm excited and proud to represent UT Football as its next offensive coordinator.”

His move to Texas is a return to the Big 12 after just one year away from the conference, as Yurcich was previously the offensive coordinator at Oklahoma State from 2013-18 before joining Day's staff.

Yurcich, who was paid $950,000 for his lone season at Ohio State, becomes the second Ohio State coordinator to leave the Buckeyes' staff following the 2019 season, joining co-defensive coordinator and secondary coach Jeff Hafley, who left to become the head coach at Boston College.

Senior quality control coach Corey Dennis, who assisted Day and Yurcich in coaching Ohio State's quarterbacks, is also expected to become the full-time quarterbacks coach at Colorado State, though his hiring has not yet been officially announced by CSU.

Now, Day is left with two vacancies on his coaching staff to fill after his first season as the Buckeyes' coach, and will have to decide how to fill Yurcich's place on the coaching staff. While Ohio State will certainly look to replace Yurcich on staff with a new quarterbacks coach, wide receivers coach Brian Hartline – who listed becoming a passing game coordinator as one of his goals on his most recent performance review – could also be a potential candidate for a promotion.

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