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Update: Jim Tressel named Akron’s ‘VP of Strategic Engagement’

Terrelle Pryor Pro Day Getty Images

UPDATED 11:21 a.m. ET: Following up on the news that broke late Wednesday night, Akron announced the hiring of Jim Tressel as its “Vice President for Strategic Engagement”.  The release issued by the school stated that it’s a newly-created position that will be utilized in support of programs that promote student success.

“I have great memories of my time at UA and, more importantly, I feel a real sense of family when I’m on this campus,” Tressel, a UA graduate, said in a statement. “I am inspired by the vision of President Proenza.  I admire what he, the leadership team and the faculty have accomplished over the last decade to build the reputation of the University and lay a strong foundation for student success.  I’m looking forward to being part of the spirit of innovation that drives the University of Akron.”

UPDATED 8:34 a.m. ET: Akron has confirmed in a press release that it will hold a 10 a.m. ET press conference featuring school president Luis Proenza and former Ohio State head coach Jim Tressel.  The release did not state specifically what the presser was regarding, although it’s expected it will be announced that Tressel has been hired for a non-athletic administrative position.

A television station in the Cleveland area is reporting that Tressel will be hired as some type of vice president and his contract will be in the neighborhood of $200,000 per year.


Over the weekend, a Twitter “report” surfaced that former Ohio State head coach Jim Tressel is interested in going back to the collegiate level — at Ohio St. or somewhere else — in an administrative capacity.

Based on another report, that could very well come to fruition sooner rather than later.

According to the Cleveland Plain Dealer, Tressel has been in discussions with the University of Akron regarding an administrative position with the school.  The Plain Dealer states that an announcement of Tressel’s hiring by the NE Ohio school could take place as early as Thursday.

In a statement, the university did nothing to shoot down the speculation.  In fact, they added more fuel to the speculative fire.

“When Jim Tressel and other alumni assisted us in our search for a football coach last December, we began to engage in dynamic conversations about Jim’s professional goals outside of athletics,” the unattributed statement read. “We share a common interest in innovative programs for student success. Our discussions continue.”

There was no detail provided as to whether the administrative position would be inside or outside of the Zips athletic department.  Tom Wistrcill was hired as Akron’s athletic director in August of 2009, and has been considered to be by and large a success during his brief tenure.

Since retiring/resigning/being fired as Ohio State’s head coach last memorial Day weekend, Tressel served as a game-day instant replay advisor for the Indianapolis Colts.  He was interviewed — twice — for the NFL club’s head coaching vacancy earlier this year, but lost out on the job to Chuck Pagano.

He had also been rumored as a potential head coaching candidate for the Zips before the school hired Terry Bowden.

The paper also reported that Tressel was being considered for administrative leadership posts at Baldwin Wallace College and Wittenberg University. BW was where his father Lee Tressel became an Ohio small college coaching legend.

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18 Responses to “Update: Jim Tressel named Akron’s ‘VP of Strategic Engagement’”
  1. pike573 says: Feb 1, 2012 10:35 PM

    Akron better be careful. If he gets too close to the football program the NCAA won’t be far behind.

  2. lemmam says: Feb 1, 2012 10:37 PM

    good fit for Tressel.

  3. sgm405 says: Feb 1, 2012 10:49 PM

    Welcome home Jim!

  4. thefiesty1 says: Feb 2, 2012 12:24 AM

    Akron should RUN as far away from him as quickly as possible.

  5. fpd1520 says: Feb 2, 2012 8:16 AM

    BW was wear his father Lee Tressel became an Ohio small college coaching legend.

    Wear? Seriously?

  6. mgscott says: Feb 2, 2012 10:01 AM

    I just purchased my Akron Zip sweater vest

  7. drexelvol says: Feb 2, 2012 10:27 AM

    How the hell is he remotely qualified to be an administrator/VP at a University?

  8. dkhhuey says: Feb 2, 2012 10:54 AM

    Great to see the Vest getting on with his life and career! Good luck Jimmy T!!!

  9. kaf39 says: Feb 2, 2012 11:13 AM

    Good luck Jim!

  10. Deb says: Feb 2, 2012 12:48 PM

    Is that Tressel in the photo? It doesn’t look like him.

  11. dkhhuey says: Feb 2, 2012 1:00 PM

    @Deb – if you photoshop a sweater vest on him, you’ll be able to recognize him!

  12. Deb says: Feb 2, 2012 1:51 PM

    @dkhhuey …

    ROFL … maybe that’s it :)

    Actually, the guy in this photo looks like a football coach. I’m just so used to seeing this on CFT …

    that I’ve come to picture Jim Tressel as …

    Glad to finally see him in a different light.

  13. drexelvol says: Feb 2, 2012 1:57 PM

    “Vice President for Strategic Engagement”

    That’s obviously a BS, made-up title just to give him a job.

  14. canetic says: Feb 2, 2012 6:48 PM

    Vice President of Cheating wasn’t catchy enough

  15. dkhhuey says: Feb 2, 2012 8:57 PM

    I Miami Hurricane’s fan making comments on cheat!!! Now that is rich!!!

  16. dkhhuey says: Feb 2, 2012 8:59 PM

    Sorry – can’t type all of a sudden – anyway, in English – A Miami Hurricane fan making comments on cheating – now that is rich!

  17. 10of14 says: Feb 2, 2012 9:01 PM

    Wow, this is kinda sad. Sorry, you can sugar coat it OSU fans, but he would get more respect if he coached at Canton McKinley High School than this crappy job in a city forgotten. Sad.

  18. rumorg says: Feb 3, 2012 12:30 PM

    “A newly-created position that will be utilized in support of programs that ‘promote student success’.” They have got to be kidding. Tell that to the OSU juniors who won’t get to play in a bowl game because of this man’s blind allegiance to Pryor et al.

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