Football

Ohio State Football Notebook: ‘It’s in the back of everyone’s minds’

Urban Meyer Ohio State Football

A Pair and a Barrett?

Woody Hayes used to say that when it comes to running backs, you need a pair and a spare. While Urban Meyer is the kind of coach who will take as many running backs as he can get, for the most part, it has been the quarterback in his offenses that have been the second option when it comes to running the ball.

Only once in the last decade has an Urban Meyer squad not had a quarterback finish first or second in rushing on the team, and that came in 2010 at Florida when he didn’t have a mobile starting QB. History has shown that as long as Meyer has a mobile quarterback, that quarterback will be running the ball.

With Kevin Wilson calling the plays, however, he would like to see that second option on the ground be another tailback more so than a quarterback.

Barrett could be the second option, but it obviously has its drawbacks.

“He can,” Wilson said. “You’ve got to be smart in the amount of hits on him and the effect it has on the whole offense. His ability to run is outstanding, but I also think too we can see how he distributes the ball with some of the pass game and those little bubble swings, those are actually part of the running game. They get logged as passing yards but they’re a part of the run game. Sometime instead of him having to pull it him getting the ball to the perimeter with a short pass still extends the run game and maybe takes some hits off of his body or any quarterback’s body.”

No Siesta From the Fiesta

Ohio State’s 31-0 loss to Clemson in last year’s College Football Playoff was a popular topic of conversation at last week’s B1G Media Days from the national reporters who apparently hadn’t written about it yet.

Urban Meyer in the past has used losses as motivation, but currently there has been no similar usage here.

“I’ve been asked that a lot,” he said. “And we kind of let that one go. We’ve been known in the past to use different forms of motivation, a loss here or there or what have you. That ship has sailed. It’s gone. And we’ve not addressed it. We’ve not talked about it. Professionally, it changed how we do some business on offense and we’re moving forward.”

That being said, you can’t just forget that it happened.

“It’s in the back of everyone’s mind, and whether I’ll use that during training camp or not is to be determined,” he said. “But where we’re at as a team, I like where we’re at. So we’re just pushing forward.”

A Family Decision

Urban Meyer said recently that defensive coordinator Greg Schiano turned down two head coaching jobs after last season to remain at Ohio State. Schiano won’t keep saying no forever, however, and Meyer knows this and accepts it.

What has it been about Ohio State that has kept him around?

“I just agree with the way we do things,” Schiano said. “I think we have a tremendous head coach, a tremendous program, and a tremendous university. You put all that together, and the best part is coming to work every day with our staff and our players because they’re elite guys.”

So when will Schiano ultimately decide to leave? Easy. He’ll leave when the decision is what’s best for him and his family.

“You do what’s right for you at the time,” he said. “You do what’s right for you and your family. That’s every decision I’ve ever made in coaching has been based on that.”