Coombs returns to OSU as defensive coordinator


Tennessee Titans secondary coach Kerry Coombs cheers on his players during an NFL football practice Friday, Jan. 17, 2020, in Nashville, Tenn. The Titans are scheduled to face the Kansas City Chiefs in the AFC Championship game Sunday. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)

COLUMBUS (WCMH) — Kerry Coombs, who spent six seasons as the Ohio State University’s cornerbacks coach, has been hired as the Buckeyes’ new defensive coordinator.

Coombs spend the last two years as the cornerbacks coach for the Tenessee Titans.

Coombs spent 2012-2017 with OSU before moving on to the NFL.

He served as cornerbacks coach for his first five years with the Buckeyes, moving up to assistant coordinator, defense, for the 2017 season.

While with the Titans, Coombs helped the team produce one of the league’s top secondary units.

Coombs also played a hand in grooming five first-round NFL draft picks while with OSU:

  • Bradley Roby (2014, Denver Broncos)
  • Eli Apple (2016, New York Giants)
  • Marshon Lattimore (2017, New Orleans Saints)
  • Gareon Conley (2017, Oakland Raiders)
  • Denzel Ward (2018, Cleveland Browns).

“Kerry Coombs is the coach I was really hoping we could hire and bring back to Ohio State,” OSU head coach Ryan Day said in a press release. “He is an excellent coach and he has had two outstanding seasons in the NFL on Mike Vrabel’s staff with the Tennessee Titans. “

A lifelong Ohioan who was a member of the University of Dayton’s 1980 Division III national championship team, Coombs’ coaching career includes five seasons at the University of Cincinnati from 2007-11 under head coaches Brian Kelly and Butch Jones. That preceded a 16-year run as the head coach at Colerain High School, where he had a 161-34 record with 10 state playoff appearances and the 2004 Division I title. His teams from 2000 through 2006 won seven consecutive Greater Miami Conference championships and recorded seven undefeated regular seasons.

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