By Ben Peters
Athens NEWS Associate Editor
Ohio University Head Football Coach Frank Solich on Wednesday announced that he is retiring after 16 seasons leading the Bobcats.
Solich, 76, is stepping down to focus on his heath, according to a university news release.
“After 55 years in coaching, including 16 at Ohio University, it is time for me to step away to focus on a cardiovascular health issue,” Solich, a 1999 Home Depot National Coach of the Year and 2016 Mid-American Conference Coach of the Year, said in a statement.
Solich led the Bobcats to an 115-82 record, 11 bowl appearances, four MAC titles and a top 25 ranking. The number of Bobcat victories is second only to the 121 wins secured by former OU Head Football Coach Don Peden, who served from 1924 to 1946. The number of wins also made Solich the winningest head coach in MAC history.
Solich’s 77 conference-only wins rank second to former Central Michigan head coach Herb Deromedi’s 90, according to a university news release. His 16 years of service match Deromedi for the most in MAC history. OU is 77-46 in conference play since Solich arrived in Athens in 2005. Solich ranks fourth for career wins among active NCAA FBS head coaches; his career coaching record is 173-101.
He also was paid the highest salary of any OU employee, taking home nearly $589,000 in his final year.