COLUMBUS, Ohio — Notre Dame head coach Marcus Freeman and Ohio State head coach Ryan Day met with the media one final time before Saturday’s game at Notre Dame.
Here are the highlights of what was said from each coach.
+ On the use of defensive subs, Freeman said they have a plan but always make in-game adjustments. There’s a plan on who they want to utilize but the flow of the game dictates that too.
+ On the matchup with the school he played at and the cross-over ties, Freeman said last year the game was the first game of the season, there were a lot of headlines. This year it’s a different approach for everybody, it’s week 4-5 and the focus isn’t about where he was or went to school, it’s about preparing his team to face a really good Ohio State team. “That’s where the focus should be.”
+ The offensive line is gelling and is getting to where they need to be.
+ On their signals and communication with James Laurinaitis being on Ohio State’s staff, Freeman said each week ti changes, they have to change things up. All of the games are on TV and they can hear the checks and see the signals, so they are constantly changing to keep teams off balance that can hear or see them.
+ The biggest thing for his team is to tune into the moment and not the noise. They have to do what they do and do it better.
+ The hardest thing is to be intentional in their practice habits. The energy is always there in practice, but they need to lock in and get lined up and execute with all of the noise. He has been pleased with the Tuesday and Wednesday practices this week.
+ On Marvin Harrison Jr. playing in the slot and building packages around him, Day said they try to find ways to enhance his skill set but there’s only so much they can do when teams double-team him. They find ways to get the ball to him in their game plan, but if they can’t, everyone else has to win their one-on-one battles.
+ On getting the offense in a groove and balancing holding pieces of the offense back, Day said they first had to figure out what fits the players they have now, their personalities, and the schematics of it, but also letting them play the game and react. “We always want to have curveballs, and we will. We always want to put our players in the best position possible.” The test is Saturday night to see what this team looks like.
+ Staying on schedule and not having penalties is important for Kyle McCord, or any quarterback. They want to get rid of penalties, be efficient, and win first downs.
+ On managing the health at safety, Day said having Josh Proctor and Lathan Ransom healthy is huge. Those are two guys who have played a lot of football and have played in big games.
+ On adjusting in-game defensively, Day said it’s important and they have seen it already this year. “There will be change ups for sure on both sides. That’s part of the game though. Finding that balance is the art of coaching.” They can’t do too much because they need to make sure players are playing fast and reacting.
+ On the energy at practice this week, Day said they saw the schedule and knew what this game was going to be. There is a lot of electricity around this game and the players are excited for that opportunity and challenge. “They know what comes with games like this.”
+ On Kyle McCord, Day said “everything is not brand new anymore.” He is doing a really good job with the growing process.