The Ohio State Athletic Department announced on Wednesday that Luke Fickell has been promoted to assistant head football coach and will be the interim head coach for the first five games of the 2011 season.
Fickell will retain his role as linebackers coach and co-defensive coordinator, the university said.
"I am honored to be able to grow at a place and in a program that I know, love and respect. It is extremely humbling," Fickell said in a statement released by Ohio State.
Fickell will be the interim head coach as Jim Tressel serves a five-game suspension for concealing information that suggested both quarterback Terrelle Pryor and receiver DeVier Posey were violating NCAA rules. An NCAA investigation is ongoing and more penalties could be levied against Tressel and the Ohio State football program.
Fickell, who is entering his 10th year as a member of the Ohio State coaching staff, was selected in 2010 as the AFCA's assistant coach of the year for FBS schools. He was also named linebacker coach of the year by Football Scoop.
After graduating from Columbus St. Francis DeSales High School, where he was a state wrestling champion, Fickell was a four-year starter on the Ohio State football team.
Between 1993 and 1996, Fickell started a school-record 50 consecutive games. He finished his career at Ohio State with 212 total tackles, including 26 tackles-for-loss and six sacks.
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NCAA Could Consider Ohio State 'Repeat Violator'
March 17, 2011: NCAA Upholds Ohio State Suspensions; Tressel To Sit Out 5 Games In '11
March 14, 2011: Tressel Gets Standing Ovation At Canton Speaking Engagement
March 12, 2011: OSU AD Smith Asked About Tressel On CBS Broadcast
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March 10, 2011: Gee: No 'Smoking Gun' In Ohio State Rules Violation Investigation
March 9, 2011: Ex-Ohio State Football Player Says He Told Tressel About Player Investigation
March 9, 2011: Tressel's Rules Violation Could Impact Ohio State Recruiting
March 8, 2011: Ohio State Suspends Coach Jim Tressel For 2 Games
March 7, 2011: Report: Tressel Knew About Violations Last April
December 30, 2010: NCAA Rebuts Critics Of Ruling On Ohio State Violations
December 28, 2010: Suspended Ohio State Football Players Publicly Apologize
December 23, 2010: Pryor, 5 Others, Face Sanctions For NCAA Violations
December 22, 2010: Ohio State Probing Possible NCAA Violations By Football Players