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April 14, 2005

COLUMBUS, Ohio – Jim Heacock, Ohio State’s veteran defensive line coach, is the Buckeyes’ new defensive coordinator. Heacock takes over for Mark Snyder who earlier today became the new head coach at Marshall.

Heacock’s promotion was announced by head coach Jim Tressel, who also announced the promotion of linebackers coach Luke Fickell to co-coordinator.

“Jim has a wealth of experience and is a terrific coach and teacher,” said Tressel. “We didn’t feel we had to look very far to find a replacement for `Snydes.’ We have always done things by committee when it comes to game planning and strategy, so Jim is very familiar with what we want to accomplish. We are fortunate to have him on the staff.

“This is a great opportunity, too, for Luke to take more of an active role in the defensive scheme. Luke is one of the great young coaches in the college game and this will give him a chance to grow even more.”

Tressel said he would begin looking for a new position coach to replace Snyder as soon as spring practice concludes (April 23).

“We would like to get that done as soon as possible,” the coach said. “But we still have five practices to get through.”

Heacock has been a member of the Ohio State staff since 1996. He coached the defensive tackles his first four years before being given responsibility for the entire defensive front in 2000. He was named assistant head coach prior to the start of last season. Heacock is a native of Alliance, Ohio and a 1970 graduate of Muskingum College.

Fickell is in his fourth year at Ohio State. He joined the OSU staff in 2002 as special team coordinator. In 2004, he also took over the linebackers. Fickell is a native of Columbus and a 1997 graduate of Ohio State. He was a four-year starter at nose guard for the Buckeyes between 1993 and 1996 and started a school-record 50 consecutive games.