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Snyder keeps tradition going at all programs

COLUMBUS – It seems wherever Mark Snyder goes, a winning tradition is involved.

Thursday, July 26, 2001

COLUMBUS – It seems wherever Mark Snyder goes, a winning tradition is involved.

Whether it’s high school, playing college football or coaching at the college level, Snyder has always been a part of great tradition.

At Ironton High School, the Fighting Tigers were 22-1 and finished as state runners-up in the two seasons Snyder was the starting quarterback.

A stop at Northeast Oklahoma State Junior College saw Snyder guide his team to the JUCO national championship game, and then he gained honorable mention All-American honors as he helped Marshall reached the 1987 NCAA Division I-AA championship game.

Snyder is proud of the Herd’s 10-5 record in 1987 and making the I-AA playoffs for the first time, not to mention the national championship game.

"That started the whole cycle (of Marshall winning)," Snyder said.

"You had Mike Barber, you had Sean Doctor, you had Ron Darby. It was just a matter of everybody believing. It was like at Ironton and obviously when I got to Youngstown it was the same thing."

Snyder’s stint at Youngstown State was as an assistant coach. The Penguins reached the I-AA national championship game four times during his six seasons with YSU winning three titles.

Next was a four-year stint as defensive ends coach at Minnesota. Snyder helped turned the Gophers program as the defense averaged 40.7 sacks a year after getting only a total of eight the prior to his arrival.

"It was a great experience. I got the opportunity to go to the Big Ten and help turn around a program that hadn’t won since 1984 when Lou Holtz was there," Snyder said.

"I’ve been so fortunate to be on teams that were already established."

Joining Ohio State’s coaching staff last spring under first-year head coach Jim Tressel brought Snyder to a program that is already established and steeped in tradition.

Snyder, who worked under Tressel at Youngstown State, is excited about the opportunity to keep the Buckeyes winning.

"I can’t put it into words. I’m at Ohio State. I’d like to stay here for a long time. I’d like to see my kids through high school. I’d like to be here 20 years," Snyder said.

Snyder becomes part of another tradition Friday when he will be the honoree at the second annual Ironton Appreciation Dinner at 7 p.m. at Tanks Memorial Stadium