Hometown: Columbus, Ohio
High School: DeSales
Alma Mater: The Ohio State University, 1997
Year in Coaching: 14th (12th year at Ohio State)
Children: Son Landon, daughter Luca, and twin sons Aydon & Ashton
Luke Fickell will coach his 11th season at his alma mater in 2012 in the position of defensive coordinator and linebackers coach. Ohio State head coach Urban Meyer announced Nov. 28, 2011 - the day he was hired - that Fickell would be a part of his Ohio State coaching staff.
"I have great respect for Luke," Meyer said. "He's an Ohio guy...a Buckeye...a man's man. But he's here because he is an outstanding coach."
Fickell was the team's head coach in 2011, a position he accepted on May 30, 2011 without demands, without questions and without any prior head coaching experience. He was asked to step forward and take over a program in need of a steadying influence, and he was just that through a 6-6 regular season and a season-ending 24-17 loss to Florida in the TaxSlayer.com Gator Bowl.
"Coach Fick" was much more than a just a steadying influence, though. He was an accomplished leader through one of the most difficult times in Ohio State athletics history. He kept the team focused on the controllable - always - and despite 53 games missed by starters, the constant molding of two first-year quarterbacks, and inexperience and youth up and down the lineup, he had the Buckeyes in control of their Big Ten championship destiny until the last three weeks of the season.
"Luke ... took on an unbelievable challenge to lead this football program through this particular year at this particular time, and he was the right leader for that time to lead this football program," Gene Smith said.
Prior to Fickell's appointment to head coach he had been promoted to assistant head coach in March 2011. He also coached the Buckeye linebackers and has served as co-defensive coordinator.
Fickell's coaching career began at Ohio State. After spending a year on the injured reserve list with the New Orleans Saints, he was hired in 1999 as a graduate assistant at Ohio State by his college coach, John Cooper.
His first full-time coaching position came in 2000 under Lee Owens at Akron, spending two years as defensive line coach. Jim Tressel brought him to Ohio State as special teams coordinator in 2002 and he also worked with the defensive front. He was named linebackers coach in 2004 and added co-defensive coordinator duties to his resume in 2005.
Fickell has been a part of some outstanding Ohio State defenses. In 2005 the unit was fifth in the NCAA in total defense and first in rushing defense. In 2006 it was 12th in total defense. In 2007 the Buckeyes were first nationally in total defense, in addition to being first in scoring and pass defense. The team was 14th in total defense in 2008 and, in 2009 and 2010, the Buckeyes were fifth and fourth, respectively, in total defense.
Fickell is a Columbus native (DeSales High School, where he was a state wrestling champion) and a 1997 graduate of Ohio State. He played for the Buckeyes from 1992-96, redshirting the first year and then starting the next four seasons at nose guard. He started a school-record 50 consecutive games between 1993 and 1996.
Fickell concluded his Ohio State career with 212 total tackles, including 26 tackles-for-loss and six sacks. During his four years in the starting lineup, the Buckeyes posted a combined record of 41-8-1 overall and were 26-5-1 in Big Ten play with a pair of Big Ten co-championships to their credit. With the win over Arizona State in the Rose Bowl, the Buckeyes finished the 1996 season with a sparkling 11-1 record and were second in the nation in both major polls in the final rankings.
Luke and his wife, Amy (an Ohio State physical therapy graduate), have four children: Landon, Luca ,and twins Aydon and Ashton.
Luke Fickell Coaching Experience
|2012||Defensive Coordinator/LBs||Ohio State|
|2011||Head Coach||Ohio State|
|2005-2011||Co-Defensive Coordinator/LBs||Ohio State|
|2002-2003||Special Teams Coordinator||Ohio State|
|2000-2001||Defensive Line Coach||Akron|
|1999||Graduate Assistant||Ohio State|