Football Names Mike Tressel Defensive Coordinator

CINCINNATI – University of Cincinnati football head coach Luke Fickell named Mike Tressel as the Bearcats’ defensive coordinator and linebackers coach Wednesday.
Tressel, who previously coached at UC from 2004-06 as special teams coordinator/linebackers coach, returns to the Clifton Heights campus after spending 14 seasons at Michigan State.
“We are happy to welcome Mike and his family back into our program,” Fickell said. “As we went through the process of hiring a coordinator for the first time in my tenure here, it was truly about finding someone who was the right fit for all of us and Mike felt like a natural fit. He has previous experience at UC and we worked together at a prior school so there’s a comfort level there. Mike is an experienced coach who knows how to call a defense and I respect the way he goes about things. Excited to get spring football started in the near future and see him working directly with our team.”
A 25-year coaching veteran, Tressel was MSU’s linebackers coach from 2007-19 and also was the special teams coordinator his first eight seasons at MSU. He was the co-defensive coordinator for two seasons (2016-17) and the sole defensive coordinator for two seasons (2018-19), in addition to being the assistant head coach in 2019 and coaching the safeties in 2020.
“I am honored to return to the University of Cincinnati as defensive coordinator. I have a lot of respect for Coach Fickell as a person, and the way he runs his program. The achievements of the defense over the past few seasons are phenomenal and I am excited to build on the legacy of effort and attitude that has been established. My family and I truly appreciate the opportunity to come back to a very special place in Cincinnati.”
• Tressel and Fickell were on the Ohio State staff together from 2002-03. The Buckeyes were National Champions in 2002.
• During his time at MSU, Tressel coached 20 players who earned 35 All-Big Ten Conference honors along with eight All-Americans and two major award winners.
• Seven of his former linebackers have gone on to play in the NFL, including former Bearcats Jamar Enzor and Tyjuan Hagler.
• Tressel comes from a bloodline of successful coaches, as his uncle Jim Tressel won four NCAA I-AA championships at Youngstown State before leading Ohio State to the 2002 National Championship. His grandfather, Lee Tressel, ranked as one of the winningest coaches in Division III history and won a National Championship at Baldwin-Wallace College. His father Richard, who spent 23 seasons as head coach at Hamline, coached 11 seasons at Ohio State.
• He and his wife Megan have two children: Logan and Quincy.
View Coach Tressel’s full bio online.
Season tickets for the 2021 University of Cincinnati football campaign are on sale now and represent the best value for Bearcats fans to see the defending American Athletic Conference Champions in action this fall.
UC will look to build on a school-record, 20-game winning streak at Nippert Stadium in 2021 with matchups against: Miami (OH) Murray State, SMU, Temple, Tulsa and UCF.
Season ticket packages start at just $99, with limited seats available in the Coach’s Corner and a majority of our best-value seats in the Varsity View and Bearcats Lair sections starting at $150. Bearcats fans are encouraged to visit season ticket central online to view available seats and review all price levels.
For all the latest information on Cincinnati football, please visit For up-to-the-minute updates, follow Cincinnati football (@GoBearcatsFB) and Coach Fickell (@CoachFick) on Twitter. You can also find the Bearcats on Instagram and Facebook.

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