Grinch officially accepts Buckeyes job


EZEKIEL NELSON | Daily Evergreen file

Cougar defensive statistics have seen an improvement under Defensive Coordinator Alex Grinch, who joined the program in 2015.

DYLAN GREENE, Evergreen sports editor

An Ohio State University news release officially confirmed Tuesday that former WSU Defensive Coordinator Alex Grinch is joining the Buckeyes coaching staff.

His specific job and responsibilities will be announced at a later time, according to the release.

ESPN reported Thursday that Grinch was leaving Pullman to take the Buckeyes’ 10th assistant coach position as the co-defensive coordinator at Ohio State.

A new NCAA rule will go into effect Tuesday allowing each Division I football program to add a 10th assistant coach.

Being closer to home and family factored into Grinch’s decision to take the job in Columbus, Ohio, sources told The Seattle Times. Grinch’s hometown of Grove City is about a 15-minute drive from Columbus.

One of Grinch’s family members is also sick, which could have played a role in his decision to join Ohio State and move closer to where he grew up, according to The Seattle Times.

Grinch informed WSU players of his impending departure after rumors surfaced in the middle of December connecting him to Ohio State, and he was honest with the players on the WSU defense about his reasons for leaving, sources told The Seattle Times.

Grinch made $600,000 at WSU this year and was due for a $25,000 raise in 2018, The Seattle Times reported.

In his three seasons at WSU, the Cougars defense improved nationally in total defense each year and ranked 16th in 2017. The WSU defense also accumulated 103 tackles for loss in 2017, the second-most in school history.

“I am pleased to announce the addition of Alex Grinch to our coaching staff,” Ohio State football Head Coach Urban Meyer said in the news release. “I am very impressed with his body of work while at Washington State, as many others were, and I am happy he chose to come home to Ohio to become a part of our Buckeye coaching staff.”

Grinch’s departure comes after rush linebackers coach Roy Manning left WSU to join University of California, Los Angeles, staff as a special teams coordinator Jan. 3. The Cougars now have one defensive coaching positions to fill after the hiring of Tracy Claeys as defensive coordinator Monday.