Two-Minute Drill: Fickell Talks Defense
By Brandon Castel
COLUMBUS, Ohio — Ohio State’s defensive coordinator Luke Fickell has come under fire this week after his defensive allowed 49 points against Indiana over the weekend.
It was the most points allowed by the Buckeyes since 1994 and only the fourth time a team has scored 40+ points against Ohio State since the turn of the 21st Century.
Fickell met with the media Monday to talk about his defense and the fact head coach Urban Meyer plans to get more involved with that side of the ball this week.
On Meyer’s Meeting
* Fickell says it was good for everyone in the defensive room to see the head coach take such an interest in what they're doing.
* Travis Howard said Urban Meyer took the defense by surprise when he showed up at the defensive meeting.
* Howard said the defense realizes how serious it is when the head coach shows up. Sounded upset and disappointed.
* Howard said Meyer's message was to the defense was they are playing way below what he believes they are capable of.
* Meyer told the defense he has always respected the OSU D, but they are not living up to expectations at Ohio State.
* Howard said Meyer thought this OSU defense would be one of the best in the country after spring. Still sees potential in them.
Fickell on Defensive Woes
* Fickell said his role as the DC isn't much different from the past. It's a collaborative thing in the defensive room.
* Fickell says one thing they've had in the past is a lead in the middle of the field who makes people around him better.
* Fickell said he would have had a pit in his stomach if they had given up 31 points. It grew with each point.
* Fickell said he doesn't sleep well at night when the defense allows 14 points, let alone 49 points.
* Fickell on the pizza incident: "We would never whine, we would never complain. I actually agree with it."
Fickell on the LBs
* Fickell said this defense really misses the group of juniors and fourth year seniors at the LB position because of attrition.
* Fickell said Curtis Grant is still trying to pick everything up. Sometimes it takes time. Referenced Sabino.
* Fickell said the outside pressure on him to perform is nothing compared to the inside pressure he puts on himself.
* Fickell said Zach Boren has been asking him for three years to come over and play LB.
* Fickell said he and Meyer discussed the idea of Boren coming over, and he gave them a spark in practice.
* Fickell said they're trying to find a way to get the best 11 on the field, and that could mean using Nathan Williams at LB.
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