Rutgers football has a new man in charge: Chris Ash.
Early in a long introductory press conference Monday in Piscataway, new director of athletics Pat Hobbs explained why he picked the Ohio State assistant coach to lead the program after the firing of Kyle Flood.
“This is a great day for Rutgers University,” Hobbs declared. “Last Monday when I was asked what I was looking for in a new coach, I said, our next coach has to be a great ambassador for our university; someone who can lead young men, someone who will get our fans hopeful and excited again about Rutgers football. I found that person in Chris Ash.”
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Ash leaves Columbus after turning the worst pass defense in Ohio State history into one of the best in the country in two years.
That followed stops at Arkansas and Wisconsin, among others.
“What I will tell you is that Chris Ash is a man of commitment, character and integrity,” Hobbs said. “What most impressed me was his belief and confidence in the possibilities of Rutgers football.
“He has considered every aspect of what it takes to have a successful football program here at Rutgers, and will bring all that he has learned and the best practices of the incredible coaches he has worked for, including guys who have come from the Hayden Fry tree, Dan McCarney, Chuck Long, Bret Bielema, and of course the last two years, under Urban Meyer.”
Hobbs was impressed no players were late to Ash's first team meeting, held at 7 that morning.
“Under Coach Ash, our student athletes will receive the best training, the best strength and conditioning,” Hobbs said. “He will ensure that they take full advantage of the world-class education we offer here at Rutgers university. And he and his staff will prepare them for life after football. That is how caring is defined. This is not an easy job. There is a lot to do to bring us to the level of competitiveness and excellence we all want.”