Buckeyes Size Up Top Programs During Bye Week
By Rob Ogden
As a voter in the USA Today Coaches Poll, Urban Meyer submits a Top-25 ballot each week, but if his words Monday are any indication, Meyer doesn't put much thought into it.
Ohio State ranks third in the latest poll, behind Alabama and Oregon, but in reality, Meyer said he doesn't know how his Buckeyes compare to the nation's top teams.
Photo by Jim Davidson
"Where are we? I don't know. We are 6-0 and doing the best we can to get first downs and stop people," Meyer said. "We've got to find a way to win this Saturday, and it's not easy. We've been in here for two weeks trying to figure out how to run the ball against this defense."
With the team on bye last weekend, Meyer said he got the chance to watch football in a non-scouting fashion for the first time this season.
He said he watched Penn State's four-overtime win over Michigan in its entirety, and caught highlights from games involving other top teams.
Meyer said water cooler talk is fun, but at the end of the day, preparing for the next opponent is all that matters.
"You start wondering where you stack up, and then I try to click right back into, don't worry about that, just take care of your own business."
Prodded again to compare the Buckeyes to the nation's other top teams, Meyer finally gave in.
"I think we are right there. I think we are a good team, I do," he said.
"I think we are not as explosive as some of these teams.
"That's something I want to be. If I had to grade us, we are not explosive from first to fourth quarter."
Photo by Jim Davidson
The most football receiver Corey Brown watched over the weekend was his 13-year-old brother's game. The few college games Brown did catch pieces of, he said he watched solely as a fan, and not as a scout.
His focus, Brown said, is entirely on the Buckeyes' offense, which he said still has plenty of room to improve.
"We can get a lot better. We still make a lot of mistakes and leave a lot of points on the field," he said. "We're headed in a good direction. If we keep working everyday at practice and keep getting better, by the end of the year we can be a ridiculous offense."
Like his coach, junior linebacker Ryan Shazier caught most of Michigan's loss, though he said he missed the thrilling finish.
"I already knew who I wanted to lose," he said. "And they lost."
The Buckeyes are one of 13 undefeated teams in this week's Coaches Poll, and Shazier said they're among the best.
"I watched a little bit and I saw a lot of good teams play and I feel like we can play with any of them," he said. "So whatever happens, happens. When the time comes we're gonna play who we have to play."
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