Kerry Coombs is leaving the Tennessee Titans to return to Ohio State, according to multiple reports on Monday. Letterman Row first reported the news, though it was not exactly a state secret before that.
An original member of Urban Meyer’s Buckeye staff, Coombs coached Ohio State’s defensive backs from 2012-17 and in that time developed the Buckeyes’ secondary into one of the best position groups in the country. Five Buckeye defensive backs heard their name called in the first round of the NFL draft from 2014-18.
Ohio State ranked among the top 13 nationally in pass efficiency defense four times, including 2017. Ohio State immediately slunk to 42nd in 2018, leading to Day’s hiring of Hafley. Ohio State immediately rocketed to first (they were second until LSU shredded Clemson last Monday), which led to Hafley’s hiring at BC and, now, Coombs’ return.
Ryan Day rectified that by hiring Jeff Hafley, and the Buckeyes’ pass defense immediately rebounded by leading the nation in pass efficiency. Opposing passers hit only 50.9 percent of their throws for 5.6 yards per attempt with nine touchdowns against 15 interceptions.
With Hafley off to Boston College, Coombs will now return to Columbus in Hafley’s old role. He’ll be expected to carry a coordinator title.
“I told the [defensive backs] last year at this time: ‘I am going to go get the best guy in the country.’ They didn’t know who Jeff Hafley was,” Day said last month. “Now they love him, they’re going to miss him. Going to do the same thing again next year, go get the best there is. You call around to different people that you respect. But usually the people you bring in are people that you know really well and you trust.”
As always, stay tuned to The Scoop for the latest.