Ohio State co-defensive coordinator and linebackers coach Luke Fickell has agreed to a six-year contract to become the University of Cincinnati’s head football coach. The university announced the hire on Saturday afternoon, scheduling a press conference for 3:15 p.m. The contract details will be released following approval by the UC Board of Trustees.
The press release said that Fickell will remain with OSU throughout the playoffs.
Fickell has been the head of the OSU defense since 2005, briefly serving as interim head coach in 2011 before returning to defensive coordinator.
Fickell has been with the OSU program since the 2002-2003 season.
This season, Fickell has shared the defensive coordinator duties with Greg Schiano. The two have led a defense that ranks fourth in total defense leads the country with seven interceptions for touchdowns and ranks fourth with 19 interceptions.
Since Fickell started coaching the linebacker unit in 2004, OSU has produced three different first-team All-American players and 12 NFL draft picks, not including the current linebackers at OSU.
Fickell played for OSU from 1992 to 1996, where he started four seasons at nose guard and started in a school record 50 consecutive games.
Fickell’s only head coaching experience prior to Cincinnati has been his interim position with OSU in 2011, where he went 6-7 with the Buckeyes.
He will take over a Bearcats’ team that went 4-8 in 2016 before former coach Tommy Tuberville left the program.