Proenza said Tressel was very helpful in the school's coaching search, which resulted in the Zips hiring former Auburn coach Terry Bowden.
Since then, Tressel and Proenza remained in contact, discussing the possibility of joining forces.
"Our vision for student success was exceptionally aligned," Proenza said.
Accompanied to the news conference by his wife, Ellen, Tressel wore a navy blue blazer and gold tie -- Akron's colors -- with a logo of Zippy, the school's Kangaroo mascot. Tressel was typically smooth as he answered direct questions regarding his role in Ohio State's fall.
Tressel said he has no regrets, but he did acknowledge wishing he had handled some things differently.
He has admitted to lying to NCAA investigators about his knowledge of Ohio State players receiving improper benefits. The scandal led to the Buckeyes, who are now coached by Urban Meyer, to a one-year bowl ban and a reduction in scholarships.
"I think you always go back, whether it was a game you coached or a series of things that occurred and you always go back and say here's what I could have done better," he said. "In this type thing, working with young people, you can use your experience. Just like we did talking about special teams. If the right guard didn't block the guy and we had the punt blocked, we wouldn't have lost the championship.
"You always go back and you probably learn more and can teach better from some of your shortcomings."
Tressel said since leaving Ohio State that he has finished reading 30 of 100 books he pledged to finish. He also joked that his wife was anxious for him to return to work.
"Ellen wanted me to get out of the house," he cracked. "I mean, how often can you cut the grass?"