Ohio State Buckeyes: James Laurinaitis promoted to full-time coaching staff

Ohio State football coach Ryan Day completed his 2024 coaching staff Thursday with the promotion of James Laurinaitis to linebackers coach.

Laurinaitis, a three-time All-American at the position for the Buckeyes, was a graduate assistant last season.

In that role, he worked with the team’s linebackers alongside defensive coordinator Jim Knowles.

With his elevation, Laurinaitis will be allowed to recruit off campus and perform on-field coaching on game day.

He is the third person added to the staff this offseason, joining new safeties coach Matt Guerreri and offensive coordinator Chip Kelly.

Safeties coach Perry Eliano was not retained after two years, special teams coach Parker Fleming was fired, and quarterbacks coach Corey Dennis left to become a member of the staff at Utah.

Ohio State also announced multiple contract extensions Thursday, including two more years for Knowles, who is entering the third year of an initial three-year contract.

Now he is set to be in Columbus at least through 2026, as is Tim Walton.

Walton was hired as cornerbacks coach two years ago and promoted to secondary coach last year, when his contract was also extended by a season. He received two more years and the title assistant head coach in the newest announcement.

Defensive line coach Larry Johnson, whose contract expired in January, received a new two-year contract that will keep him in Columbus through the end of the 2025 season.

Tight ends coach Keenan Bailey also had a year added to his contract, meaning he will be on staff through the 2025 season.

Ohio State also added Tony Johnson, a former Penn State defensive back who is Larry’s son, to the staff as a senior analyst.

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