Ohio State head coach Urban Meyer took part in Sunday’s Big Ten Championship Game teleconference. He spoke about a number of topics, most specifically the Buckeyes’ upcoming matchup with Wisconsin in Saturday’s Big Ten Championship Game.
+ It’s an honor to represent one of the toughest divisions and one of the best conferences. He is pleased with the resiliency of his players and coaches.
+ Meyer won’t know for a couple of days about J.T. Barrett’s status, but everything seems to be progressing well.
+ Dwayne Haskins started a little slow against Michigan. There was a procedure penalty, but the poise and accuracy was outstanding.
+ Meyer said Greg Schiano was contacted by Tennessee, but that’s all he knows right now. He’ll let people know when he knows something.
+ Haskins’ season has been the typical process and progress of a backup quarterback. Meyer is much more confident in him than he was a year ago, and that’s just the maturity that comes with time.
+ Meyer isn’t looking into the incident with Barrett, but the OSU administration will. He’s busy enough coaching. There are others handling the issue.
+ “Everything my blame in this program.” Meyer takes responsibility for being unaware of the dangers on the sideline. He’s more concerned about Wisconsin right now than following any investigation or progress with the incident. He’s confident that it will be handled.
+ J.K. Dobbins is awesome. He supplies energy every day. He shows up and works every single day. Mike Weber is that way now too. They played hard yesterday. That was tough sledding. There is plenty for Dobbins to improve on, including physical strength and pass protection.
+ Urban Meyer will decide who plays quarterback, but J.T. Barrett will be heavily involved in that decision, as will Ryan Day.
+ They have a standard way of doing business throughout the week, so they’ll treat this week like the rest. “We don’t change the work week.”
+ Barrett has gotten treatment on the knee all season long, but it was never as bad as it was on Saturday. They never tried to protect him or the knee during the season because he was good enough to go.
+ They are trying to change the low-key aspect of Haskins. He’s a great kid from a great family. He’s very complimentary of his teammates. That position needs to exude energy, however. He bounced back very well in the Illinois game following his fumble. “He doesn’t have to be a ‘rah rah guy'” but he has to provide energy. He’s getting better at that.
+ This is the same kind of Wisconsin football team that has been around for years and years. Big and strong on defense, “giant human beings” on offense, with great running backs and productive quarterbacks.
+ The early signing day has already impacted the coaching carousel. “It’s upon us fast.”
+ Denzel Ward has been critical on special teams. He even when he doesn’t block a kick he puts pressure on the play.
+ Meyer will talk to the team about the playoffs and being focused on Wisconsin. He doesn’t want to hear about the playoffs. When they are focused, they are a heck of a team. When they don’t, they’re like anybody else.
+ Denzel Ward is so fast and has an incredible skill set. He takes his job seriously. He has a great relationship with Kerry Coombs.
+ Greg Schiano has been a close friend for over 20 years. He’s an elite person, father, and husband, and that transitions over to the way he handles his players.
+ J.K. Dobbins’ maturity is what has set him apart from any other freshman running back that Meyer has had. It’s rare. He’s like Raekwon McMillan, who came in “ready made.”
+ Meyer thinks Paul Chryst is fantastic. They get along very well. He has a great staff and they do a great job of evaluating and developing players.
+ There are some similarities with 2014 that Meyer could borrow this week, but that seems like 25 years ago and this is a whole new group.
+ “I love Joe” Burrow. The broken hand ended the quarterback competition because you can’t have that competition during the season. “Joe’s very important.” It’s tough to be a quarterback at Ohio State, but Burrow is tough and is on call and ready to go.
+ Austin Mack has fought through injuries and is a great kid and will have a great career.
+ Meyer is much more confident in his wide receivers than a year ago. Even when they weren’t making catches they were playing hard.
+ The defense isn’t as dynamic as they were a year ago in terms of creating turnovers. This group is getting better, but they’re not satisfied, but it’s not due to effort.
+ Meyer is spending zero energy or effort on the playoffs. The focus is on Wisconsin. That’s it.