Two-Minute Drill: Wednesday Post-Practice Updates
By Tony Gerdeman
COLUMBUS, Ohio — Urban Meyer and several Buckeyes, including quarterback Braxton Miller, took some time on Wednesday evening to talk with the media about various subjects, most notably the BCS and this weekend's big games. Here are the highlights.
Urban Meyer Updates
* Meyer said that defensive coordinator Luke Fickell did not interview with Florida Atlantic about their vacant head coaching job. He said that if any assistant coach asked to interview in this middle of the season, he would tell them not to distract the team and to wait. Meyer said the normal protocol for a school that wants to interview one of his coaches would be for that athletic director to call Meyer and ask for permission. That apparently has not happened yet.
* Meyer said that he will definitely be watching college football Thursday night, and he will compare his team to the teams that he is watching. He will also be attending one of his daughter's volleyball games this weekend.
* Meyer said that he doesn't like politicking for his team when it comes to the BCS, but he knows that he has to do it for his players and his coaches.
* Meyer said that right tackle Taylor Decker is ahead of schedule on his MCL sprain and should be good to go for the Illinois game.
* Meyer said that the same rules apply as the last time the team had a bye week. Nobody better get into trouble, and everybody better come in at weight. He said the team needs to be serious right now because “The chase is on, man.”
Corey Linsley Updates
* Linsley said that the Ohio State offense is better this year because its more mature. They are more accustomed to the necessary practice habits, and they all know their jobs. He also added that it helps that they can throw the ball and be two dimensional now. He said they know what a good offense looks like now.
* Linsley said he will watch what football he can this weekend, but he'll be working on a class project Thursday night. He said he hasn't seen much of Baylor or Oregon but he thinks the Buckeyes are probably more physical than those two teams. He also thinks the Buckeye offense manages the clock better than those two teams do.
* Linsley said that Urban Meyer has talked to them about “style points”, and said that if they had beaten Penn State by a score or two, Baylor would have jumped them. He said you can “call it unsportsmanlike” if you want, but the Buckeyes are trying to accomplish something that no other Big Ten team is trying to accomplish.
J.T. Moore Updates
* Urban Meyer said today that Moore is one of the most valuable Buckeyes on the team because of how many special units he is on. Moore said it's always gratifying to hear Coach Meyer say stuff like that. Moore, who was moved from defensive end to tight end before the season, said the move has been difficult, but he liked the opportunity to get on the field more.
* He said a year ago that his relationship with Meyer wasn't very good, but it has obviously grown now.
* On being presented with a position change, Moore said, “You've got to embrace the truth.”
Michael Bennett Updates
* Bennett said that he likes where the defense is right now, but they aren't as consistent as they need to be yet.
* He said that they are able to rotate more young players in on defense because of the points that the offense is putting up. They don't have to be nervous about putting young players in, and the young players don't have to be nervous about being in.
* Bennett said that he wants to be an All-Big Ten or All-American player, and when he watches those types of players, they dominate games, so he knows he has to do better, and he believes he can.
* Bennett said that his left elbow is a little banged up right now, but that everybody has bruises. This is a good time for a bye week so that they can work on getting healthy again. Asked how bad his elbow was hurting at times against Purdue, “It hurts bad enough to come off the field.” He then said that pain is temporary, and then added how cheesy yet true that saying is.
* Bennett said the inability to jump any of the three teams ahead of them without a loss isn't frustrating for him because he only worries about things that he can control. He said that when Meyer talked about style points, he told them that he never would have mentioned anything like this to the team in the spring, but he thinks they're mature enough to handle it now.
* Bennett said he thinks the Buckeyes are the best team in the conference, adding, “People really can't roll with us.”
Ryan Shazier Updates
* Shazier said that while it's good for the team to have a week off to get healthy, he'd rather be playing this weekend.
* He said that he's definitely interested in watching some football this weekend. He said that it's hard for him to turn off his linebacker brain when he's watching other games, especially with a DVR because he's constantly rewinding plays and asking himself why a linebacker did this or did that. “I can have wings and potato chips and still break it down.”
* Asked about Baylor and Oregon, Shazier said that a good defense can stop any offense.
Braxton Miller Updates
* Miller said he probably will watch some football this weekend. He doesn't think about the rest of the BCS too much because all he can do is help the Buckeyes win their games.
* Miller said making statements on the football field is right in tune with the momentum that they have right now, so it's not like they're doing anything extra, it's just where they are as a team right now.
* Miller was asked if he felt like he was in a groove right now, and he said that it's all about preparation and how comfortable he feels right now. He said that when you know where everyone is, and where you're going to go with the ball, it's exciting.
* He said going against the Ohio State defense every week has definitely made the offense better.
* On being reminded of his one completion in a victory at Illinois in 2011 and if that could happen again, Miller laughed, “No, that wouldn't work.”
* Miller said that he sizes up other teams when he watches them, adding that he'll take his guys over anybody else's.
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