|Annual salary||$3.4 million|
|Born||August 18, 1973|
|1997||New Orleans Saints|
|Coaching career (HC unless noted)|
|1999||Ohio State (GA)|
|2002–2003||Ohio State (ST)|
|2004||Ohio State (LB)|
|2005–2010||Ohio State (Co-DC/LB)|
|2011||Ohio State (Interim HC)|
|2012–2016||Ohio State (Co-DC/LB)|
|Head coaching record|
|Accomplishments and honors|
1 AAC East Division (2019)
1 AAC (2020)
BCS National Championship (2002)
CFP National Championship (2014)
|2x AAC Coach of the Year (2018, 2020)|
AFCA Assistant Coach of the Year (2010)
Luke Joseph Fickell (born August 18, 1973) is an American football coach and former player. He is the currently the head coach at University of Cincinnati. He started his career at Ohio State University, first as a player and then as an assistant coach. He was interim head coach at OSU for the entire 2011 season and accepted the head football coaching position with the University of Cincinnati in 2016.
Fickell started his playing career at DeSales High School, where he was a two-time first team All-Ohio defensive tackle as well as a three-time state champion in wrestling.After redshirting for the Buckeyes in 1992, Fickell was a standout defensive player, making a school-record 50 consecutive starts at the nose guard position from 1993 to 1996. In his freshman year, he lined up next to Dan Wilkinson. Despite having a torn pectoral muscle, Fickell started the 1997 Rose Bowl, making two tackles in the Buckeyes victory over Arizona State. After graduating from Ohio State in 1997, Fickell signed as an undrafted free agent with the New Orleans Saints of the National Football League (NFL). After tearing the ACL in his knee, he spent the remainder of the season on the injured reserve list and was later released by the team.
After a brief stint in the NFL and at Ohio State as a graduate assistant in 1999, in 2000 Fickell was hired by the University of Akron as the defensive line coach.
After two seasons with the Zips, he returned to Ohio State in 2002 as the special teams coordinator under second-year head coach, Jim Tressel, helping guide the team to the 2002 BCS National Championship.In 2004, Fickell took over as the linebackers coach, adding the title co-defensive coordinator to his responsibilities in 2005. In 2010, he was named Assistant Coach of the Year by the AFCA, joining a list of Buckeyes coaches to be recognized by the association that also includes Carroll Widdoes, Woody Hayes, Earle Bruce, and Jim Tressel.
In 2011, Fickell was originally named to serve as interim head coach in place of Jim Tressel, who was given a five-game suspension by the NCAA due to a recruiting scandal. However, in May of that year, Tressell resigned and Fickell was given a one-year contract to serve as interim coach, only for the 2011 season.
After Ohio State posted a 6–6 regular season record, Fickell was passed up as the permanent head coach, and instead Ohio State hired Urban Meyer. Fickell guided the Buckeyes one last time in the 2012 Gator Bowl against Meyer's old team, the Florida Gators.After Meyer took the helm, Fickell returned to his old job as co-defensive coordinator (helping guide the Buckeyes to the 2014 CFP National Championship), a job in which he served until he was named head coach at Cincinnati.
On December 10, 2016, Fickell was named as the 39th head coach of the University of Cincinnati, taking the place of the resigning Tommy Tuberville.
In his first season, Fickell led the Bearcats to a 4–8 record.
2018 would be a historic turnaround of the program, finishing with an 11–2 record and a victory in the Military Bowl. Fickell was named AAC Coach of the Year for the 2018 season, which was only the third 11-win season in UC history.
He led the team to another 11-win season in 2019. The Bearcats reeled off nine straight wins after falling to Ohio State in the second game of the year. The team won the east division championship in the AAC for the first time, but fell two straight weeks to Memphis, in the final regular season game and in the conference championship. For the second straight year, Cincinnati won its bowl game over an Atlantic Coast Conference team, winning the Birmingham Bowl over Boston College by a score of 38-6.
Before the start of the 2020 season Fickell agreed to a contract extension which would keep him at Cincinnati through the 2026 season.Fickell had previously received head coaching interest from other schools such as Michigan State, Florida State, West Virginia, Louisville, and Maryland.
Fickell was one of thirteen coaches named to the watchlist for the Bobby Dodd Coach of the Year Award before the 2020 season.
In 2020, Luke Fickell led the Cincinnati Bearcats to a 9-1 campaign including Cincinnati's second perfect regular season which included winning the 2020 AAC Championship Game against the Tulsa Golden Hurricane. Cincinnati was selected for the 2021 Peach Bowl against the #9 Georgia Bulldogs. Both teams went into the game down a number of key players due to injury, illness, or opt–outs, including Cincinnati's two All-Americans Ahmad Gardner and James Wiggins. After leading by a score of 21-10 entering the fourth quarter, Cincinnati ultimately fell to Georgia on a 53 yard field goal with 7 seconds left in the game, to a final score of 24–21 in an instant classic. Fickell was named AAC Coach of the Year for the second time in his career.
Fickell and his wife, Amy (Goecke), who has a physical therapy degree from Ohio State, have six children -- five sons and one daughter -- including two sets of twin boys.They started dating when Amy was a sophomore at Ohio State; they were married in 2000. Fickell and his family are Roman Catholic, which played a factor in Fickell's interest in coming to Cincinnati.
Fickell's eldest son, Landon, committed to Cincinnati as an offensive guard out of Moeller High School as part of the 2021 recruitment class.
|Ohio State Buckeyes (Big Ten Conference)(2011)|
|2011||Ohio State||6–7||3–5||4th (Leaders)||L Gator|
|Cincinnati Bearcats (American Athletic Conference)(2017–present)|
|2018||Cincinnati||11–2||6–2||3rd (East)||W Military||23||24|
|2019||Cincinnati||11–3||7–1||1st (East)||W Birmingham||21||21|
|2020||Cincinnati||9–1||6–0||1st||L Peach †||8||8|
|National championship Conference title Conference division title or championship game berth|
Urban Frank Meyer III is an American football coach who is the head coach of the Jacksonville Jaguars of the National Football League (NFL). Meyer previously served as the head coach of the Bowling Green Falcons from 2001 to 2002, the Utah Utes from 2003 to 2004, the Florida Gators from 2005 to 2010, and the Ohio State Buckeyes from 2012 to 2018. He retired from coaching in 2019 at the end of the Rose Bowl, and stayed at Ohio State as an assistant athletic director and was also an analyst for Fox Sports, appearing weekly on their Big Noon Kickoff pre-game show. In 2021, Meyer came out of retirement to become the head coach of the Jaguars, marking his first job in the NFL.
James Patrick Tressel is an American college football coach and university administrator who is currently the president of Youngstown State University in Youngstown, Ohio. Before becoming an administrator, Tressel was the head football coach of the Youngstown State Penguins and later the Ohio State Buckeyes in a career that spanned from 1986 until 2010. Tressel's teams earned several national championships during the course of his career, earning him numerous accolades.
The Michigan–Ohio State football rivalry is an American college football rivalry game played annually between the University of Michigan Wolverines and The Ohio State University Buckeyes. It gathered particular national interest as most of the games from the 1970s through the mid-2000s determined the Big Ten Conference title and the resulting Rose Bowl Game match ups, and many influenced the outcome of the national college football championship. The game was ranked by ESPN in 2000 as the greatest North American sports rivalry.
The 2007 Ohio State Buckeyes football team represented Ohio State University during the 2007 NCAA Division I FBS football season. The Buckeyes were coached by Jim Tressel and played their home games in Ohio Stadium in Columbus, Ohio. Tressel led the Buckeyes to their fourth Big Ten Conference championship and third BCS National Championship Game in six years. The team finished the season with overall record of 11–2, with losses to conference-rival Illinois and LSU in the 2008 BCS National Championship Game.
The 2005 Ohio State Buckeyes football team represented Ohio State University in the 2005 NCAA Division I-A football season. The team's head football coach was Jim Tressel. The Buckeyes played their home games in Ohio Stadium. The team finished the season with a win-loss record of 10–2, and a Big Ten Conference record of 7–1. They tied for the Big Ten championship with Penn State.
The 2004 Ohio State Buckeyes football team represented Ohio State University during the 2004 NCAA Division I-A football season. The team's head football coach was Jim Tressel. The Buckeyes played their home games at Ohio Stadium. The team finished the season with a record of 8–4 and a Big Ten Conference record of 4–4.
Marcus Freeman a former American football linebacker and coach, who is currently the defensive coordinator for the Notre Dame Fighting Irish football team. He was drafted by the Chicago Bears in the fifth round of the 2009 NFL Draft. He played college football at Ohio State.
The Ohio State–Penn State is an American college football match between the Ohio State Buckeyes and the Penn State Nittany Lions. Ohio State leads the series 21–14.
The Cincinnati Bearcats football program represents the University of Cincinnati in college football. They compete at the NCAA Division I Football Bowl Subdivision level as members of the American Athletic Conference, and have played their home games in historic Nippert Stadium since 1924. The Bearcats have an all-time record of over .500 as of 2018, having reached their 600th program victory in 2017. The team has had a bit of a resurgence in the past few years, going 98-56 since 2006, along with 9 bowl game appearances, 5 conference titles, three BCS/NY6 Bowl berths, and 22 NFL Draft selections.
The 2011 Ohio State Buckeyes football team represented Ohio State University in the 2011 NCAA Division I FBS football season. The Buckeyes were coached by Luke Fickell on an interim basis following the resignation of Jim Tressel as head coach. The Buckeyes played their home games at Ohio Stadium in Columbus, Ohio and are members of the Big Ten Conference in the Leaders Division.
The 2012 TaxSlayer.com Gator Bowl, the 67th edition of the game, was a post-season American college football bowl game, held on January 2, 2012 at EverBank Field in Jacksonville, Florida as part of the 2011–12 NCAA Bowl season. TaxSlayer.com was named the corporate title sponsor on September 1, 2011. The game, which was telecasted at 1:00 p.m. ET on ESPN2, featured the Ohio State Buckeyes of the Big Ten Conference versus the Florida Gators of the Southeastern Conference.
The 2017 Cincinnati Bearcats football team represented the University of Cincinnati in the 2017 NCAA Division I FBS football season. The Bearcats were led by first-year head coach Luke Fickell who was hired in December 2016. The Bearcats played their home games at Nippert Stadium, and were members of the East Division in the American Athletic Conference. They finished the season 4–8, 2–6 in AAC play to finish in a three-way tie for fourth place in the East Division.
The 2018 Cincinnati Bearcats football team represented the University of Cincinnati in the 2018 NCAA Division I FBS football season. The Bearcats play their home games at Nippert Stadium, and are members of the East Division in the American Athletic Conference. They are led by second-year head coach Luke Fickell.
Desmond Ridder is an American football quarterback for the Cincinnati Bearcats.
Mike Tressel is an American football coach who is currently the defensive coordinator and linebackers coach for the Cincinnati Bearcats football team. Tressel, the nephew of former Ohio State head coach Jim Tressel, joined the University of Cincinnati's football coaching staff under Mark Dantonio in 2004. Tressel followed Dantonio to Michigan State when he was hired there in December 2006. He was named the acting head coach when Dantonio announced his retirement in February 2020. Tressel was one of two Dantonio assistants retained by Dantonio's successor, Mel Tucker.
The 2021 Cincinnati Bearcats football team will represent the University of Cincinnati in the 2021 NCAA Division I FBS football season. The Bearcats will play their home games at Nippert Stadium and compete as members of the American Athletic Conference. They will be led by fifth-year head coach Luke Fickell.
2. Was your Catholic faith a factor in choosing where you wanted to be a head coach? LF: “I’m not sure it was one of those things where you say, ‘I’ve got to go to a place that has a high Catholic influence or community,' but my family, like I said, is the number one most important thing to me. And for my family to go to a place where they felt like they could thrive and truly set roots and say, 'We can live here for 10, 12, 15 years' or whatever … to be in a community like this where there are a lot of options for schools, youth sports. There were a lot of factors, and obviously faith was a big part of that thought.”