Two-Minute Drill: Updates From Wednesday's Post-Practice Interviews
by Tony Gerdeman
COLUMBUS, Ohio — Urban Meyer and some of his players, including Braxton Miller, spoke with the media following practice early Wednesday evening. The talk centered mostly around the Iowa Hawkeyes. Here are the highlights.
Urban Meyer Updates
* Meyer said he was surprised by how many players they are redshirting this year. “I don't want to do that.” It was then mentioned that it should set up the future nicely, but Meyer responded, “My future is Iowa.”
* Meyer said that every Thursday is player development day, and they assess all of their players in more ways than just football. He said that Carlos Hyde is always grading well. He has a shorter leash, but he has not had any issues since his initial incident.
* He said they always tweak things during the bye week as a process of scouting themselves and breaking tendencies. He said you don't have time to do it during a normal week.
* Meyer said that they haven't yet gotten to gameplanning around Iowa's redzone defense, and how they have not yet given up a rushing touchdown. He said they will begin breaking that down on Thursday.
* Iowa players were calling Carlos Hyde a “beast”, and when asked what it's like to have a beast at running back, Meyer said, “It's kind of cool, I guess.”
* Asked about the College Football Playoff selection committee, Meyer said that he likes having old coaches on it.
* Meyer said that Iowa is definitely not a trap game. Their defense is too good not to be taken seriously.
* Asked if he had figured out a way to move the ball on Iowa's defense yet, Meyer had a slight smile when giving a standard coachspeak answer.
* He said they worked hard on Braxton Miller's ball security during the bye week.
Braxton Miller Updates
* Miller said that this is likely the best defense the Buckeyes have seen to this point.
* He said that his knee aches a little in the back sometimes. It does hinder his cutting ability a bit, and he's hoping to be back to his old self soon, and working to get there. He said he wasn't fully himself against Northwestern.
* Miller said he wasn't holding the ball properly against Northwestern, and he's been focusing on carrying it tighter when running.
* Asked about the winning streak, he said they don't really talk about it. When told that a win against Iowa would equal the second-longest streak in OSU history, he said, “Wow, that would be amazing.”
* Miller said Iowa has a fundamental defense and every area is smart and sound. He said they need to play their hardest against Iowa and force the Hawkeyes to extend themselves in order to keep up.
* Asked if he watched the Michigan – Penn State game, he said, “That was a crazy game.” He also watched the Alabama game, and when asked if he thinks the Buckeye stack up against the Crimson Tide, he said, “I do.”
* Miller said there's no worries about overlooking Iowa. He said that it's hard to go out and win every Saturday in Big Ten play, so it's not hard to stay focused on the task at hand.
Carlos Hyde Updates
* When told about Iowa players calling him a beast, he said, “I appreciate that.” Asked what makes him a beast, he said it's the way he runs, with a chip on his shoulder and determination.
* Hyde said 1,000 yards rushing is a big goal for him, but he tries not to think about it. He's just trying to go out there and get a win.
* Asked if Iowa's run defense poses a challenge given how they haven't allowed a rushing touchdown this season, he said, “I don't think it's a challenge at all.” He said the Buckeyes are going to do what they are going to do, and nobody is going to make them change what they set out to do.
* He said that whoever executes better in the running game will be better equipped to control the game and control the clock.
Corey Linsley Updates
* Linsley said that this will be the best defensive line that they have faced this season. He said that in terms of toughness and the things that Ohio State preaches, Iowa is very similar. Given that type of familiarity, Linsley added, “I think we're prepared for them.”
* Linsley said that there's no real “leader” of the offensive line. Instead he said there's a culture. There are no soft guys and no defiant guys in the offensive line room. He cited walk-on Ben St. John as an example. St. John, who is near the bottom of the depth chart, puts up 30 reps of 225 pounds, and Linsley said that when the guy near the bottom is doing that, it's a testament to your room.
* Asked if he was aware that Iowa hasn't given up a rushing touchdown yet, he replied, “Oh, we know that. We definitely want to get that one.”
* He said that clock management will be key. He said they need to get out to an early lead and then manage the clock. He said sometimes they score too quickly and put the defense out onto the field too often in a short span of time.
* Asked about overlooking Iowa, he said that in the past, the weeks they haven't taken a Big Ten opponent seriously are the weeks they have been upset. He said they have learned from history. He said that every defensive line in the Big Ten is good, so you can't take breaks.
* Linsley said that the coaches didn't have to say much about Iowa not allowing a touchdown run. They simply had a piece of paper put on their seats with that particular statistic on it.
* He said that Carlos Hyde went “beast mode” against Northwestern, and it was actually pretty funny watching some players trying to tackle him.
Corey “Pittsburgh” Brown
* He said that he expects Iowa to run the ball, and that whichever team runs the ball best will probably be in an ideal position to win this game.
* Brown said that he doesn't worry about the winning streak. He said that you hear a little bit of talk about it here and there, but he's sticking to “one game at a time”. He called it a great feeling, but also a great responsibility.
* He said the play-action passing will be huge in this game and the defensive backs just have to read their keys and keep their eyes on the game. He said they spent the week working on attacking the receiver when the ball is thrown. He also said they've been communicating a lot more in the secondary since the Wisconsin game.
* Brown said that Iowa throws to the tight ends quite a bit, and it will give them a bit of a different look than they've seen to this point.
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