The Ohio State men’s soccer team has hired a former rival coach to try and kick start the program.
The Buckeyes announced the hiring of former Michigan assistant Ian Gordona Monday, appointing him to the same position in Columbus. According to an OSU press release, he will also assume the role of recruiting director.
Gordona, who spent the last two seasons at Michigan, helped guide the Wolverines to back-to-back winning seasons after a dismal 2011 season when the Wolverines finished 5-14-1 overall.
Regardless of his recent affiliation with a heated rival, Gordona earned his bachelor’s degree from Ohio State in June of 2003 in history. Since then, he has coached 113 All-Americans, 66 Youth National Team players, 51 professionals and six National Players of the Year on top of four national championship teams.
Gordona’s recent success has coach John Bluem excited for his return to Columbus.
“We are delighted to have Ian join the staff,” Bluem said in the press release. “He is an excellent young coach, tremendous motivator and fantastic recruiter. He is a remarkable evaluator of young talent and will lead the way in our future recruiting efforts. He has incredible work ethic and will provide a strong role model for our student athletes.”
Gordona is set to replace Taly Goode, who spent four seasons with the Buckeyes. Goode “left the program to move on to other opportunities,” OSU spokesman Alex Morando said in an email.
According to Morando, Gordona’s salary is $47,000, while Goode’s was $40,609. Outside of football and men’s basketball, Morando said OSU does not have contracts for assistant coaches.
Gordona, who was not immediately made available for comment, released the following statement in the press release.
“It’s an honor and privilege to have the opportunity to be a part of The Ohio State University and the athletic department,” Gordona said. “I feel fortunate and humbled to have the opportunity to work with the men’s soccer program under the direction of coach Bluem and coach (Frank) Speth, as well as learn from the minds of the other great coaches this university has within its athletic department. My desire is to help build this program back to national prominence.”
The Buckeyes finished the 2013 season with a 5-8-4 record – and won just one Big Ten game.
OSU is scheduled to kick off its 2014 fall season Aug. 17 against West Virginia in an exhibition game at Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium.