Urban Meyer will take the field for his first regular season home game this Saturday since arriving at Ohio State, but he’s not the only new coach on campus.
The most recent hire was announced Wednesday, when Bryan Koniecko, former five-time tennis All-American and two-time Big Ten Athlete of the Year at OSU, joined the women’s tennis staff, and he’s just one of the new Buckeyes coaches to be introduced in 2012. The women’s tennis team, field hockey and the men’s track and field and cross country teams also have added new coaches.
Koniecko spent the past two seasons as an assistant for the men’s tennis team at Brown University.
“Bryan had an amazing career at Ohio State as a player and I am so excited he is back to join our coaching staff,” interim women’s tennis head coach Melissa Schaub said in an athletic department press release. “His competitiveness, drive and enthusiasm for Ohio State will make an immediate impact on our program. He knows what it takes to get to the elite level and I have no doubt he is going to help us get there.”
OSU athletics spokesman Dan Wallenberg confirmed that Koniecko will be paid $43,000 in his position at OSU. Comparatively, Meyer makes $4 million annually.
After taking a year off from coaching, Brice Allen has become OSU’s associate head coach and recruiting coordinator for the men’s track and field and cross country programs.
Previously, Allen has spent time coaching distance runners and cross country at the University of Louisville and Northern Arizona.
Allen, whose hiring was announced July 13, said he is impressed with the athletes he is working with as well as OSU as an academic institution.
“As a track and field coach and a recruiter, it is really important that you choose a university that works good together, to make sure that it’s a university that has the academic reputation to support top-tier student-athletes,” Allen said. “I believe Ohio State not only supports that but exemplifies that.”
Allen will be making $72,000 in his position this season, according to Wallenberg.
Joining Allen on the track and field staff is new assistant coach Ross Richardson, who told The Lantern he is excited to be at OSU.
“There’s a lot of people here (at OSU) who win championships,” Richardson said, “and I think the track program has that kind of potential to be a continuous conference contender and have a national prominence.”
Richardson is slated to make $45,000, according to Wallenberg.
Alex Street, who joined the field hockey staff as an assistant, said she felt this same bond between coaches. Street spent the past six years with the University of Virginia after playing at Michigan State in college.
Despite playing for a Big Ten rival, Street said “she is really coming home.”
“I get a real sense of family atmosphere from the athletic department. The camaraderie between the coaches is very, I guess, beneficial as well as motivating,” Street said.
Street will be making $55,008 this year in her role with the field hockey team, which has a 1-1 record going into its Friday game against American.
Assistant field hockey coach Kelly Terwilliger, named to the staff Jan. 17, said coaching at her alma mater is her “dream job.” Terwilliger’s also said she has high expectations of her players that go beyond the playing field.
“We have a great group of girls here, and Ohio State recruits the finest athletes in the country and really we expect everything,” Terwilliger said. “You know, physically on the field but off the field academically we expect the most of our student-athletes.”
Terwilliger’s salary as assistant field hockey coach will be $43,260.
And on the women’s tennis team, some coaches also feel the weight of OSU’s athletic culture.
“My brother played here and I grew up knowing Ty Tucker. So I think I knew what I was getting myself into,” she said. “I think you grow up and you know how big Ohio State is.”
Schaub was in her first year as an assistant last season but Ty Tucker, director of OSU tennis, promoted her to interim head women’s tennis coach Aug. 2.
A native of Lexington, Ohio, Schaub played college tennis at the University of Tennessee and, after graduation, began a five-year stint as an assistant with Middle Tennessee State.
Although she was used to the Buckeye way of life, it was not until she became an assistant for the Scarlet and Gray that she discovered the reach of the university.
“I think I took my first recruiting trip a week in the job as an assistant and everywhere I was walking I was in my Ohio State clothes, people were walking up and sitting down with me and all kinds of stuff,” she said. “It was definitely a different experience but great nonetheless.”
Schaub’s salary for the upcoming season will be $80,000. The women’s tennis team will compete in the Muirfield Village Tennis Invitational Sept. 14-16 in Dublin, Ohio.
Assistant lacrosse coach Jamison Koesterer, a native of New York, came on board with the Buckeyes July 2. Koesterer wasn’t as familiar with the Buckeye ways and initially had reservations about accepting his position.
Koesterer played in college at Johns Hopkins University, continued his career with professional teams in Oregon and Washington and served as director of operations for a lacrosse website based in Seattle.
Koesterer, who spent two years as a volunteer assistant coach at Johns Hopkins, said his knowledge of OSU was very limited before arriving for his interview.
He said his original perception of OSU was that it is a huge football school and other sports are not as important in people’s minds.
After he interviewed for the position, Koesterer said he had great admiration and respect for the tradition at OSU.
“I would be foolish to turn (the position) down,” he said.
Koesterer’s salary is $40,008.
The men’s lacrosse team will have its alumni game Sept. 30 at the Woody Hayes Athletic Center.
The OSU softball team also hired three new coaches after the departure of former coach Linda Kalafatis. Kelly Kovach and assistant coaches Amanda Buchholz and Jenna Hall have been brought in to lead the Buckeyes softball program. The athletic department did not respond to The Lantern’s request to interview the softball coaching staff.