Publish date:

Jim Tressel: "More people deserve to be the coach of wherever you are, so be careful about overstaying"


Before entering the world of college administration, Jim Tressel won a lot of football games at Youngstown State, and then Ohio State before - well, we all know how that run ended.

The good folks over at Monday Morning Quarterback sat down and picked Tressel's brain a bit about everything from ranging from his former players starring in Super Bowl 50, to how he compares his job as a university president at Youngstown State to the coaching profession.

Comparing his old job to his new one, Tressel offered the following insight, and noted that "everyday is a learning experience, rather than just an expectation".

"Now, every day is like everything is new. It is so much broader. Everyday is a learning experience, rather than just an expectation; Okay, you won a championship. Oh, by the way, you have to win it again next year. Oh, okay yeah right, I forgot about that."

"In the world I used to be in, there was pretty much agreement on what we were doing. The offense knew the defense was important and the defense knew the special teams were important. There was never any discussion about relative importance because everyone knew everyone was important. On a college campus, we know higher education is going through tough times and we know budgets are tough and we know we might need to cut back a little here, but not me, my college is the most important."

"Each department has their own argument, whether it’s the liberal arts college or the engineering school, or the arts. They don’t want to hear that the other one is important. That was a little bit of a surprise to me because I’d never been in a world that wasn’t in it together. The fun of it is in trying to bring it together. Bringing a group of 100 players together is not simple, but it’s a heck of a lot easier than bringing 12,000 together and seven colleges and all the different agendas. I’ve also never had tenure to deal with. My guys, I could put them on the bench and they lost their tenure. They could lose it fast."

Tressel also noted in the piece that if he needed the job, and was trying to make a full-fledged career out of it, it might not be as fun because he'd approach it differently. But now, if he gets fired, he'll just "go to Florida" or "go do something different".

On the subject of if he would ever consider a return to coaching, coach Tressel gave an interesting answer.

"I wouldn't. I miss it, the intimacy of the staff and the kids, but I did it for 37 years and I have really gotten into what I am doing now and it's a lot of fun. 

The one thing that I've always thought was: More people deserve to be the coach of wherever you are, so be careful about overstaying."

He continues to note that when search firms have reached out to him in the past, he graciously declines and says that it's simply someone else's time, and adds that he's been blessed.

Tressel had been a part of the coaching profession for nearly four decades before this new venture into adminstration, so that last perspective is one that I think a lot of coaches are going to find very interesting.

Read the full interview with MMQB here.