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Frank Solich becomes MAC’s winningest coach in Ohio’s rout of Bowling Green

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Amidst negotiations on yet another contract extension, Frank Solich has added yet another notch to his résumé.

Thanks in part to Nathan Rourke‘s four total touchdowns (three passing, one rushing), Ohio took Bowling Green State to the woodshed in a 66-24 road rout Tuesday night.  The Bobcats averaged 8.6 yards per carry in rushing for 342 yards, led by O’Shaan Allison‘s career-high 175 yards on the ground.  Allison also ran for three touchdowns after coming into the game with just two in his career.

The win is the 111th for Solich during his time at Athens, making him the all-time winningest head coach in MAC history.  The 75-year-old Solich surpassed Herb Deromedi, who won 110 games at Central Michigan from 1978-93.

“It seemed like it stalled itself out a little bit for a while, but we’re interested in winning football games, and this record goes with it,” Solich, in the midst of his 15th season with the football program, said in quotes distributed by the school. “I feel really good about it, but a lot of people were involved in this. A lot of great players over the years that have come through Ohio that have set the tradition to where we were able to recruit well and win football games.

“There have been tremendous athletes and tremendous coaches. If you have that combination, you’re going to have a few wins. A lot of people have been involved in winning some football games, so I appreciate everything that people have been done during my time at Ohio. I will say this, it is as good as I could ever hope for in a coaching business in terms of those 15 years and how it all worked.”

With the win, Ohio also moved to 5-6 and within one more win of becoming bowl-eligible.  With a win over winless Akron next Tuesday, Ohio would qualify for the postseason for the fifth straight season and 11th time overall under Solich.

Frank Solich, Ohio working toward another contract extension

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With his old contract a little over a month away from expiring, the oldest head coach at the FBS level is eyeing a new one.

Late last week, Frank Solich acknowledged at a press conference that he has been engaged in discussions on a contract extension to continue on as Ohio University’s head football coach.  Solich, who turned 75 in September, is in the midst of his 15th season at the MAC school.

Since signing his original contract in 2005, Solich’s deal has been extended or renewed seven different times, the last of which came in June of last year.

“Yeah, there’s been discussions,” Solich stated by way of the Athens Messenger, before coming back a short time later to add, “I just want to make sure that everyone knows I feel good about where the discussions are going.”

According to The Post in Athens, Ohio, Solich’s current deal expires on January 3 of 2020.

Solich has posted a 110-81 record during his time with the Bobcats.  With a 4-6 record this season, Ohio needs to win its last two games — tonight at 3-7 Bowling Green, at winless Akron a week from today — to become bowl-eligible for the fifth straight season and 11th time overall under Solich.

Ohio has also claimed four MAC East titles during Solich’s time in Athens as well.

WATCH: Ohio offensive lineman lines up at WR, does in-play cartwheel

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If you ever find yourself in need of a video description of midweek MACtion, here you go.  And you’re welcome.

In the middle of the third quarter of Tuesday night’s Ohio-Western Michigan game, Bobcats offensive lineman Hagen Meservy (not pictured) split out wide as a wide receiver.  Okay, that’s unusual, but what happened after the ball was snapped was even more so as, after a bubble screen was faked in Meservy’s general direction, the 6-3, 300-pound tackle performed a perfectly-executed, on-field cartwheel.

During the play.

Coincidence or not, the gymnastic ruse seemingly worked to perfection as Nathan Rourke connected with Adam Luehrman on a 25-yard pass on the play, which was followed on the very next snap by a 10-yard De’Montre Tuttle touchdown run that gave Ohio a 14-10 lead.  That would turn out to be the Bobcats’ last lead in regulation play as the Broncos scored from four yards out on a LeVante Bellamy touchdown run in the first overtime to claim a 37-34 win.

That game-winning run, incidentally, was Bellamy’s FBS-leading 21st rushing touchdown of the season.

The win was huge for Western Michigan on a conference level as they improved to 5-2 in MAC play, a half-game ahead of Central Michigan and one full game in front of Ball State and Toledo.  WMU has already beaten Ball State and CMU, although they did fall to Toledo early last month.

For Ohio, the loss dropped them to 4-6 on the season.  If they fail to win their last two games — road trips to Bowling Green (3-6) and Akron (0-10) — Frank Solich‘s squad would fail to qualify for a bowl game for the first time since 2014.

Ohio’s Amir Miller charged a second time with stalking

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If ye olde arrest ticker was still around, it would be a disturbing incident coming out of Athens, Ohio, that would’ve triggered a reset back to double zeroes.

Last month, Ohio’s Amir Miller was indicted on multiple charges, including menacing by stalking; having weapons while under disability; permitting drug abuse; and forgery.  All four of those counts are felonies, to which the defensive lineman pleaded not guilty.

In the latest development, the Athens News is reporting that Miller was arrested earlier this month and charged with misdemeanor counts of menacing by stalking and violating a protection order.  The News writes “that the new charges against Miller came after he allegedly put himself in the path of the victim in the stalking case as she was walking from one class to another on OU’s campus (she is a student as well).”

One witness claims that, after the protection order was issued, Miller was seen driving by the alleged victim’s apartment “in the late hours of the night on multiple occasions.”

Miller, who remains a student at the school and enrolled in classes, posted a $100,000 bond with no 10 percent allowed.  The fact that Miller remains on campus and is out on bond has created concern for Athens County Assistant Prosecutor Liz Pepper.

Pepper said she has “serious concerns” about safety for the victim and her friends on OU’s campus while Miller is out on bond.

She additionally alleged that the victim and a friend of hers said that while walking on Court Street recently, they witnessed a group of football players chanting Miller’s name at them from across the street.

After being indicted on the multiple felony counts, Miller was suspended by the Bobcats football team.

According to Miller’s official OU bio, the Cleveland native has played in one game during his time in Athens, with that lone appearance coming in 2018 as a redshirt sophomore.

Ohio, New Mexico latest states linked to potential NIL legislation

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As the NIL train barrels down the tracks, the NCAA’s hopes of derailing it lessen with each passing day.

According to one report, the state of Ohio will consider passing legislation that allows student-athletes in any sport at the collegiate level to profit off their own names, images and likenesses (NIL); according to another report, a state senator from New Mexico is expected to introduce a similar bill.

All told, there are at least a dozen states that have crafted or are in the process of crafting legislation that would put more financial power in the hands of the players on whose backs their sports, particularly football, have been built.

The free-for-all officially kicked off earlier this week when California Governor Gavin Newsom signed the Fair Pay to Play Act, which, beginning Jan. 1, 2023, guarantees student-athletes in the Golden State will have the right to market their name, image, and likeness without fear of recrimination from NCAA member institutions.  Not long after, Florida joined New York, North Carolina and South Carolina as the latest state to start down the NIL path blazed by California.

Tuesday, we noted that Pennsylvania (HERE), Minnesota (HERE) and Kentucky (HERE) were all states whose legislators are working on bills similar to the one approved in California; the next day, it was Illinois and Nevada entering the “Fair Pay to Play” fray.

And that’s in addition to a former Ohio State football player-turned-United States Congressman confirming that he “is planning to propose a new national law to give college athletes the opportunity to make endorsement money.” The congressman, Anthony Gonzalez, is expected to hold off on drafting legislation until the NCAA’s 19-person working group, established earlier this year, makes its NIL recommendations to The Association’s Board of Governors later this month.