Jan. 30, 2012

COLUMBUS, Ohio Bill Sheridan, a 31-year coaching veteran who has Midwest ties, Big Ten Conference experience and seven seasons of coaching in the National Football League, will be a defensive assistant coach on Urban Meyer’s first coaching staff at The Ohio State University, Meyer announced today. Sheridan was the linebackers coach for the Miami Dolphins the past two seasons.

Bill Sheridan is a perfect fit for our program,” Meyer said. “His experiences in the NFL are huge. He has Midwest roots and, most importantly, he wants to be an Ohio State Buckeye. I am really impressed with him and I think he is going to be a terrific addition to our defensive staff as a coach, teacher and as a recruiter.”

Sheridan is a native of Detroit and attended Grand Valley State University. A four-year letterman as a linebacker and a 1982 GVSU graduate, he started his coaching career at Shrine High School in Royal Oak, Mich., and then spent 20 seasons, beginning in 1985, in college coaching at seven institutions, including Michigan, Michigan State and Notre Dame.

After spending the last seven seasons as an assistant in the NFL, during which time he won a Super Bowl ring in 2007 with the New York Giants, Sheridan is looking forward to this opportunity to coach at Ohio State.

“I can’t remember the last time I was more excited to take a job, and for obvious reasons,” Sheridan said. “Ohio State has a historic, winning tradition, and I am very excited to be a part of that. And with the tremendous success Urban Meyer has had at each of his schools, I am honored to be a part of his staff.”

Sheridan’s arrival gives the Ohio State coaching staff 32 years of NFL coaching/playing experience with Mike Vrabel (14 years playing), Everett Withers (seven years coaching), Stan Drayton (three years coaching) and Luke Fickell (one season as a player) having also experienced the NFL. Sheridan says coaching in college and the pros is a lot more similar than people think.

“The NFL provides an invaluable experience,” Sheridan said. “It is a competitive league from a talent level and strategically. But it is coaching just the same. You are still teaching football in the classroom and then you take it to the field and you teach it there.”

He admits, too, that he is excited to be returning to the college game. 

“I have a refreshed perspective coming back from the NFL and getting into college coaching again,” Sheridan said. “I am really interested to study the offenses people are running in the Big Ten. The running quarterbacks are distinctly different than what you see in the NFL. It is stimulating if you enjoy the schematic part of the game, and I do.”

The exact position or groups of players Sheridan will coach is still to be determined, but wherever it is on the defensive side he will have had plenty of experience there already. He was linebackers coach his first nine years as a fulltime assistant: two years at Maine (1987-88), three years at Cincinnati (1989-91) and four years at Army (1992-95). He coached the Army defensive backs during the 1996-97 seasons. 

It was at Cincinnati where Sheridan first worked with Ohio State’s assistant athletic director for football sports performance, Mickey Marotti, and he and co-offensive coordinator/offensive line coach Ed Warinner spent six years together at Army.

Three years as linebacker coach at Michigan State (1998-2000), a year at Notre Dame as safeties and special teams coach (2001) and three years at Michigan (2002-04) – as linebackers coach for one year and defensive line coach for two years – followed his tenure at Army. He was UM’s recruiting coordinator in 2002 and 2003 and he was a part of two Big Ten co-championship teams in 2003 and 2004.

Then Sheridan went to the pros. He was linebackers coach for four years with the New York Giants (2005-08) and defensive coordinator in 2009. The last two seasons he has been the linebackers coach for the Miami Dolphins.

Sheridan and his wife, Jaycine, have three sons in the sport of football: Joe coaches high school football in Michigan; Nick just finished a graduate assistantship at Western Kentucky University and is now its quarterbacks coach; and Mark will be a junior safety for Albion (Mich.) College this season. The couple’s only daughter, Natalie, will be a high school senior this fall and plays volleyball.