Ryan Day returned to his role as Ohio State offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach Saturday after leading the Buckeyes to a 3-0 start.
He was filling in for head coach Urban Meyer, who was suspended after a university investigation found he mismanaged the employment of receivers coach Zach Smith.
A 39-year-old already considered a rising star in the profession before this fall, could Day be Meyer’s permanent replacement some day?
Citing “a person close to the program,” The Athletic reported late Saturday night discussions have taken place regarding making Day the coach-in-waiting at Ohio State.
OSU director of athletics Gene Smith issued a response Sunday morning, but it did not exactly refute the report.
"We obviously are appreciative of Coach Day's great work, and hope he continues to be one of our offensive coordinators for a long time,” Smith said, “but we are more than confident Coach Meyer will be our head coach for quite some time.”
Meyer has been effusive in his praise of the job Day did in his absence, though Day humbly credited the culture Meyer has put in place for setting him up to succeed.
Day also said more than once he always felt he was merely holding Meyer’s spot temporarily.
Day was hired last year along with Kevin Wilson to revamp an offense that went stale after the Buckeyes won the 2014 national championship and Tom Herman left to become head coach at Houston.
Day had no prior connection to Ohio State, but he worked for Meyer at Florida in 2005.
Day received a three-year, $3 million contract (including a $600,000 annual raise) this past offseason after reportedly fielding multiple job offers, including offensive coordinator of the Tennessee Titans and head coach at Mississippi State.
For six weeks as acting head coach, Day is to receive a one-time lump sum of $487,000 later this month.