Doc Tressel Thinks Brother Will Coach Again
By Brandon Castel
COLUMBUS, Ohio — During his recent trip to Cleveland Browns training camp, Jim Tressel hinted that he might be interested in coaching again.
Dick "Doc" Tressel
Photo by Jim Davidson
The NCAA hasn’t decided when they might allow the former Ohio State head coach to do that—at least at the Division I level—but the itch to be around the game seems to be one Tressel cannot ignore.
“I sense that (he will coach again),” said Dick Tressel, his older brother and the current running backs coach at Ohio State.
“That's just because that's who he is, that's what he does. There's no reason to not think that, I guess.”
That fact that Dick Tressel is still at Ohio State, coaching for Luke Fickell in the wake of his brother’s forced resignation, has to be one of the strangest setups in all of sports.
Photo by Dan Harker
His younger brother—the same man who ran this program for more than a decade—is no longer able to be around the team—but Dick Tressel says he isn’t sending him daily updates.
It hasn’t been easy for Dick, who left his job as the head coach Hamline University after 23 years to become an assistant under his younger brother back in 2001. The two had coached side-by-side at their father’s beloved university for the last 10 years, and it has been hard for him to watch his little brother have his name dragged through the mud.
“Oh, not as hard as it's been on Jim Tressel and a bunch of other people,” he said when asked about the ordeal.
“I think that it's been hard on everybody. I don't think that I should be singled out as it being harder on me. Because I maybe more than anybody else know that Jim Tressel is a special person and will want the Buckeyes to move forward.”
Considering how close the two brothers were during their decade together in Columbus—not to mention the fact they grew up in the same household—the elder Tressel has had to deal with his own suspicions about what he knew and when he knew it.
“I guess I can't speak too much more to that issue,” Dick Tressel said about his knowledge of any violations.
“Everybody has their own opinion, so you guys are all with it. I'm here to talk about placekickers and snappers and all those type of things.”
That’s because he was recently appointed as Ohio State’s new special teams coordinator by Fickell, who took over the program following Jim Tressel’s departure back in My. Dick Tressel also coaches the running backs for the team’s 37-year old coach, and says he never considered leaving, even after his brother was shown the door.
“I'm here, ready to go. The process was to help kids play, help kids become the best that they can be,” he said.
“That's how the program was last January and that's how it is now. I'm just doing what I can do.”
That seems to be the feeling around the program. There isn’t a person on the coaching staff who wouldn’t love to have Jim Tressel back, but he is retired and they know it’s time to move forward.
It is possible the NCAA could levy a "show cause" penalty against Jim Tressel for his negligence in coming forward with potential violations. That would all but prohibit him from jumping back onto a sideline, at least not without that school going to bat on Tressel’s behalf.
Another group that could be going to bat for him is the Ohio's high school coaches association. Even with Jim Tressel’s unceremonious departure from Ohio State, there is talk of the high school coaches honoring him this weekend by wearing a white shirt and tie to the season-opening games.
“Certainly, Jim Tressel would have to feel honored in that regard. He'd be humbled by that,” Dick Tressel said.
“Whether they do that or not, Jim Tressel understands how they feel about him.”
In that case, the gesture may not be necessary.
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