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Football: Ryan Day adds Matt Barnes as special teams coordinator

Ohio State head coach Ryan Day speaks during the Ohio State offensive availability at the Residence Inn LA Live on Dec. 29. Credit: Casey Cascaldo | Photo Editor

After adding two former Michigan assistants, Greg Mattison and Al Washington, to his coaching staff, head coach Ryan Day hired another Big Ten assistant Thursday.

Ohio State announced that former Maryland linebackers coach and special teams coordinator Matt Barnes would join the Buckeyes as their special teams coordinator and assistant secondary coach next season.

“Matt is young coach who has really done a great job at Maryland,” Day said in a statement. “He’s an energy guy who has considerable knowledge of the Big Ten Conference plus experience coaching in the Southeastern Conference. He’s going to work well with our staff and I’m pleased to have him on board.”

Last season, Barnes helped lead a Terrapins linebacker room that excelled in terms of tackling, housing Tre Watson, the Big Ten’s leader in tackles, who was named as a first-team All-Big Ten as well as a second-team All-American member by the Football Writers Association of America.

Barnes was a defensive and special teams graduate assistant at Florida under former Gators head coach Will Muschamp from 2012-14. In 2013, the Gators held the second-best kickoff coverage and the third-best punt returns in the country.

In 2015, Barnes spent a season at Michigan as a defensive analyst. The Wolverines had the No. 4 total defense in the NCAA that year.

He was named as the Special Teams Coordinator of the Year by footballscoop.com in 2012.

Barnes is one of three new coaches that have joined Day’s coaching staff with Washington, Mattison and newly-hired co-defensive coordinator Jeff Hafley.

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