Ohio State head coach Ryan Day announced on Friday during a press conference that co-defensive coordinator Greg Mattison is retiring at the end of the month.
Mattison joined the Ohio State program before the 2019 season when Jeff Hafley was brought in to replace former DC Greg Schiano. Mattison served as co-DC under both Hafley and Kerry Coombs this past season, while also coaching the strong side linebackers.
Ryan Day was awfully grateful for his commitment to the program and for helping him and his wife transition into their current role after Urban Meyer retired.
“He’s a special guy. He and Anne (his wife) have been so gracious to Nina and I in helping us in our first two years as head coach. His career speaks for itself, what he’s done and accomplished on the field but more importantly it’s what he’s done off the field. The relationships and respect he has around the country as one of the best coaches and the impact he’s had on so many people … so I can’t thank him enough for what he’s done. I know he’s going to really miss it, but he’s going to have an opportunity to spend some time with his grand kids and his children after an unbelievable career in coaching football.”
Mattison, who is 71 years old, has spent nearly a half century coaching football. While he coached the Baltimore Ravens briefly, more than 40 of his 49 years as a coach were spent in the college game with Michigan, Florida, Notre Dame and Western Michigan before he came to Columbus.
Day later said that Mattison will not be an easy guy to replace and he's open-minded on what kind of person would fill that role. It was a somewhat disappointing year for the Buckeyes defense after Jeff Hafley departed for Boston College. The Buckeyes were among the worst pass defenses in the country this year, despite losing only to Alabama in the national championship game.
Here are some additional comments that Day made about Mattison and his impact on the Buckeyes.
Since Coombs currently calls the defense and works primarily with the secondary, and Al Washington does a fabulous job as the linebackers coach, it stands to reason that Ryan Day won't need to fill Mattison's role in the exact manner in which Greg occupied it.
“I think we have a really good group of guys there right now who are versatile, so we’re going to look at all options,” Day said. “Is there somebody else out there that can take Greg’s spot in the same exact role that he did, or are we going to just move some things around and reassign some of the job descriptions? That’s all up on the table, and we’re working on that now, and looking at all different options.
“I’m not really set on ‘This is exactly what the role needs to be.’ Want to just put the best group together to give our guys on defense the best chance to be successful.”
This will be one of the most interesting things to follow this offseason with the program.
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