Thursday, March 1, 2012

Coombs Gone, But Why?

It's not just the money. Like the rest of us, Kerry Coombs enjoys a bump in pay, but heading to big budget Ohio State and a bigger payday isn't the sole motivator in this move. Coombs has been a huge booster of Cincinnati sports from day one, and that includes the Bearcats. It also includes the Reds, the Bengals, (where his son is now employed) food, people, and anything else that comes from Cincinnati. So why drag his C-shaped heart and Bearcat growling voice up I-71 to the Buckeyes? Kerry hasn't told me this but based on what I think, Kerry feels this is his only avenue to ever become the head coach at the University of Cincinnati. Let's say Butch Jones leaves in the next year or two, would U.C. Athletic Director Whit Babock bump Kerry to the head coaching job? You've heard the criticisms of his resume. I've hear them myself. Such as, "He hasn't been a coordinator at the collegiate level yet." "He's only been a head coach at the high school level." Sometimes to get what you want in your own backyard, you have to leave the neighborhood for a while. It almost happened when Brian Kelly left for Notre Dame. Kerry was invited along but he couldn't tear himself away. He knew a stint at Notre Dame as an assistant coach would help the resume of a guy looking to become a head coach some day. Just a couple of years ago Miami University was on Coombs' radar but the Redhawks opted to go with Don Treadwell. Treadwell had been an offensive coordinator at the collegiate level for years. Just recently U.C. lost a co-defensive coordinator in Tim Banks. It may have helped Coombs stay put if he would have been bumped to co-defensive coordinator. But John Jancek was named the sole defensive coordinator. So, I believe, Kerry felt the only way to climb the Cincinnati ladder was to take a step in another direction. In a couple of years the Coombs resume will look more attractive to a school looking for a head coach. Three years under Brian Kelly, two seasons under Butch Jones, and now he will be working with Urban Meyer. That is a tremendous tutelage in the "University of Head Coaches." The leaders of the U.C. program feel they will continue to recruit the area well and have already had a lot of inquiries about the position. Butch Jones and Urban Meyer have a great relationship and from what I'm told the move was completely above board. Ohio State had a need for someone to coach cornerbacks and Urban Meyer had a need for someone who knew the recent track record of the recruiting scene in the midwest. The opportunity for Coombs to learn the workings of another BCS program was too good to pass up this time. Coombs is gone from Cincinnati. He will gamble that he's not forgotten if the need for another head coach arises at U.C.

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