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YSU picks coach

Phillips, ex-Salem, Springfield mentor, chosen

Youngstown State University will reportedly hire Doug Phillips as its next football coach today.

A source within Youngs-town State University’s athletics department confirmed the hire and said an official announcement will be made today.

Phillips, who has served as running backs coach at the University of Cincinnati the last two seasons, is a Mahoning Valley native and was a coach at Springfield and Salem high schools.

He coached at Springfield, his alma mater, from 1997 to 2000, leading the Tigers to back-to-back playoff appearances in 1999 and 2000. He coached the Quakers from 2001 to 2005, accumulating a 23-27 record, with Salem going from 1-9 in 2001 to 7-3 in 2005.

He began his college coaching career with the Penguins under current YSU President Jim Tressel in 1991. Phillips coached tight ends, running backs and defensive backs during his two-year stint and was part of the 1991 national championship team.

Phillips rejoined Tressel in 2006 at Ohio State, becoming the defensive quality control coach and working mainly with the linebackers. He then moved on to Bowling Green State University in 2007, coaching defensive ends and serving as the Falcons’ recruiting coordinator.

Phillips, who earned his bachelor’s degree at Toledo and his master’s at YSU, became a high school administrator in 2008 and spent eight years in that role. He served as the superintendent at West Branch and was a principal for the Dickson County School District in Tennessee and at Dalton Local Schools in Ohio.

He returned to coaching in 2016 and was Iowa State’s director of player personnel. He then joined Cincinnati in 2017, where he was reunited with current UC coach Luke Fickel (the two worked together under Tressel at Ohio State). Phillips was the Bearcats’ special teams coordinator and tight ends coach in 2017 and running backs coach in 2018 and 2019.

Phillips takes over for Bo Pelini, who resigned on Jan. 27 after five years with the Penguins to become the defensive coordinator at Louisiana State University.

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