Tom Dienhart, Senior Writer, December 15, 2014

Ohio State offensive coordinator Tom Herman has been one of the hottest coaching commodities in recent years. Now, he?s finally going to lead a program.


Herman has been tabbed as head coach at Houston after spending the last three years with Urban Meyer at Ohio State. In that time, Herman has pushed the buttons on some of the Big Ten?s top offenses.

Herman?s 2014 attack is No. 1 in the Big Ten in scoring (45.2 ppg) and No. 1 overall (507.6 ypg) for a Big Ten title team that is 12-1 and the No. 4 seed in the playoffs with a game vs. No. 1 Alabama in the Sugar Bowl looming.

The 39-year-old Herman did perhaps his best work ever in 2014. First, he lost quarterback Braxton Miller to a season-ending shoulder injury in August. No problem, as Herman coached up redshirt freshman J.T. Barrett and made him the best quarterback in the Big Ten. Then, Herman got Cardale Jones ready for his first start ever after Barrett incurred a season-ending injury vs. Michigan. And Jones delivered a big win over Wisconsin in the Big Ten title game. It was a big reason why Herman won the Broyles Award as the nation's top assistant.

Who will take over Herman?s role at Ohio State? It could be Ed Warinner, who is the co-offensive coordinator and line coach.

Herman has deep ties to Texas. He cut his teeth as an assistant at Texas State, where he first served as offensive coordinator in 2005. From there, Herman ran offenses at Rice (2007-08) and Iowa State (2009-11) before landing in Columbus, Ohio, with Meyer in 2012.

Herman also was a prep coach in the Lone Star State in 1998 and a G.A. at Texas in 1999-2000 before landing his first full-time gig at Sam Houston State, coaching receivers from 2001-04.

Herman will take over for Tony Levine at Houston, where he went 21-17 overall and 14-10 in league action in three seasons. The Cougars were 7-5 this season, so it?s not like Herman is walking into a bad situation. This is a non-power league job built for success. In fact, Art Briles (Baylor) and Kevin Sumlin (Texas A&M) launched their careers from Houston before Levine took over in 2012.

Herman becomes the latest branch of Meyer?s coaching tree, which has seen 12 assistants go on to become head coaches: Dan Mullen (Mississippi State); Charlie Strong (Texas); Gary Andersen (Uthah State/Wisconsin/Oregon State); Kyle Whittingham (Utah); Steve Addazio (Boston College); Tim Beckman (Illinois); Doc Holliday (Marshall); Mike Sanford (UNLV/Indiana State); Dan McCarney (North Texas); Everett Withers (James Madison); Gregg Brandon (Bowling Green); Jay Hill (Weber State).

About Tom Dienhart senior writer Tom Dienhart is a veteran sports journalist who covers Big Ten football and men's basketball for and BTN TV. Find him on Twitter and Facebook, read all of his work at, and subscribe to his posts via RSS. Also, send questions to his weekly mailbag using the form below and read all of his previous answers in his reader mailbag section.

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