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Fickell kept football team ‘respectable’ despite setbacks, record

Cody Cousino / Photo editor

And just like that, Luke Fickell is no longer the head coach of the Ohio State football team.

Fickell, despite the odds, led our football team to a respectable 6-6 record. Yep, that’s right, 6-6 is a respectable record. It’s surely not first, but it’s also not last and that’s important to remember when looking back on this season. He had his back to the wall from the beginning, and in my opinion, made the best of a bad situation. Short of the Miami game, I can’t remember a single football game that this team wasn’t in until the very end. In every Big Ten conference game the team had a chance to win and you have to attribute at least some of that to Fickell and his staff. Every Big Ten loss was just one or two plays away from going in OSU’s favor. After all, none of these games was lost by more than a touchdown.

There’s something to be said for the fact that the score of these games was that close. This team played for Fickell. Sure, OSU fans aren’t used to losing five Big Ten conference games, let alone that one to the team up North. But, we didn’t hit the low that Michigan saw during the Rich Rodriguez years. The past four times the teams met, Michigan scored a combined 27 points, something that OSU topped in the game on Saturday. A loss is still a loss, but a loss in which the team was competitive is much better than one in which they were blown out.

Alas, this is all hypothetical and the team still finished with a 6-6 record. Respectable, yes, but not up to the standard that OSU football holds itself to. Urban Meyer was announced as the next head coach Monday and signed a six-year deal worth $24 million. Brighter days are on the horizon for OSU football.

I’m not suggesting the school shouldn’t have hired Meyer, but fans should take a moment to reflect back upon the position that Fickell put this team in. Taking over a program as head coach is tough enough, let alone doing so when that program is under the intense scrutiny of NCAA investigation. Fickell kept the team focused on the task at hand, playing football. It may not have been pretty at times, but Fickell kept it respectable. They had a chance to win every week, and as a fan that’s all I can ask for.

     

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