With Jim Tressel resigning as head football coach at Ohio State amidst myriad alleged violations, it didn't take long for chatter to start up about which coach would eventually replace him.
We know co-defensive coordinator Luke Fickell will step in as the interim coach for the 2011 season. After that? Hard to say. Depending on what he does it stands to reason that Fickell will have a chance to earn the full-time gig moving forward.
However, if the administration wants to reel in a big fish to wash the stink off the program, these are some of the names being bandied about:
Urban Meyer - Contractually-obligated to be considered a candidate for any high-profile football coaching gig until he publicly decries it, Meyer has already said he's not interested, though he left a little wiggle room in his denial in a way that's so typically Urban.
Bob Stoops - The longtime Oklahoma coach is an Ohio native. After 12 seasons in Norman he might want to start somewhere fresh. But the likely violations and punishments to be bestowed on OSU don't make it too attractive to a coach in his position.
Bo Pelini - The Nebraska coach is a former Ohio State player. Considering the Huskers just jumped to the Big Ten, it might be sacrilige for Pelini to jump ship even if it is his alma mater.
Mark Dantonio - The Michigan State headman has spent a large portion of his professional career in Ohio, including stints at Akron, Cincinnati, Youngstown State and Ohio State as defensive coordinator. Again, it might be too much to ask that he jump to a rival and then there's his health issues to consider.
Jon Gruden - Just because.
Gary Patterson - TCU's head coach might want to try and cash in and trade up to the Buckeyes. Then again, he's about to head to the Big East where he's going to have a much easier time winning conference titles and playing for championships.
- Because how much fun would that be? Especially for Michigan fans...