Jim Tressel's Resignation Brings a Future of Uncertainty to Ohio State

Sean JacksonContributor IIIMay 30, 2011

COLUMBUS, OH - MARCH 30:  Head Coach Jim Tressel speaks to the media during a press conference before the start of Spring practices at the Woody Hayes Athletic Center at The Ohio State University on March 30, 2011 in Columbus, Ohio. (Photo by Jamie Sabau/Getty Images)
Jamie Sabau/Getty Images

Like most, I had to do a double take when reading the news this morning. Ohio State’s coach Jim Tressel resigned. The news spread like wildfire and touched off headlines from Columbus to the West Coast.

For most Buckeye fans, the news is hardly a surprise though the timing of it seems odd. While an article from Sports Illustrated will release soon exposing more problems surrounding the program, the news still leaves many in Buckeye Nation speechless.

For those who don’t follow or support the program, Tressel was and will always be Ohio State football. His pride in the program shone in everything he did. Even as committed as he was to building a top college football program, he was more committed to shaping the lives of his players.

As many of his former players can attest, he was a great leader and made positive impressions in many of his players’ lives. One of the best examples I can recall is his support of Maurice Clarett, whom many people would rather forget about. It’s true Clarett brought a lot of negative attention on the program by his antics and crimes, but Tressel stood by him, helping Maurice try to get back on his feet after prison.

Sure, the recent news painted another picture. He made a big mistake by not telling the appropriate personnel when he received the email notifying him some of his players were selling memorabilia, then he lied when asked about it by the Columbus Dispatch back in December. As a result, this cost him his job. It brought a lot of negative press to the program and the ramifications may linger for years.

Ohio State has a lot of uncertainty ahead of them. Luke Fickell will captain the ship this season and then a nationwide search will begin for a new head coach after the 2011 season. In addition to that, Tressel’s resignation will affect Ohio State’s recruiting. Many news sources are reporting some players who committed to Ohio State have already changed their minds, while others may wait to see how the NCAA penalizes the Buckeyes.

Overall, for many Buckeye fans and myself, this is a sad day. Tressel was an outstanding coach and role model who stood by his players and the program. His success on the field was outstanding, as Ohio State saw probably its best decade of football ever. It’s unfortunate he made the big mistake, which led to his resignation.