Fast Start is the Goal
A fast start can do a lot for a team. It can buoy them through any sort of concern that maybe a particular matchup is too much for them. Or, it can confirm to the opponent the very same thing. It takes a tough team to sit through an opposing fast start and not get too worked up over it.
Wisconsin did a good job of that in the Big Ten Championship Game, but that may have been as much Ohio State’s doing as the Badgers’.
This time around, the Buckeyes want to get out to another fast start and put the pressure on USC immediately.
“I think just with our offense, every week we’re going to attack guys no matter what’s on paper,” OSU H-back Parris Campbell explained. “We just want to go in and get out to an early start, a fast start.”
When the Buckeyes come out early and execute, that statement can be brighter than the points going up on the scoreboard. It also builds the team’s confidence that there are more points to come.
“In my opinion, we’re at our best when we come out in our first two series and are putting points on the board,” Campbell said. “That’s when we’re at our best. That allows us to get ahead of teams and it’s hard for teams to catch up with us once we’re up due to a fast start. That’s going to be our goal going into this and I think we’ll be fine.”
It’s Still Real to Them, Dammit
The Buckeyes have the same goal every year — to win the Big Ten Championship, and then whatever happens after that, happens. The conference title is usually enough to put them in a position for bigger and better things.
That wasn’t necessarily the case for the Buckeyes this year, or the Penn State Nittany Lions last year.
Don’t let that ever convince you that the playoffs have devalued conference championships, however. There is too much work being put in for people on the outside to dismiss such an accomplishment.
“I’ve never played or been in college when they didn’t have the playoff, so I can only speak from the playoffs,” defensive end Sam Hubbard said. “I used to watch how big of a deal the bowl games were in the BCS era. I think that everybody thinks — not everybody, but not everybody realizes the work that went into winning a Big Ten Championship. We as players, we knew what it meant to win a Big Ten Championship and get that ring. I hope the fans did too. There were a lot of Buckeyes at that game and I think they still are happy we won that.”
Bucket List Complete
Fresh off of his Rimington Award win as the nation’s best center, Billy Price sat down at a table full of reporters inside the Woody Hayes Athletic Center. He was facing a wall with pictures of Ohio State’s most recent award winners, including last year’s Rimington winner, Pat Elflein.
“I told you all I had one goal left and it was to put my ugly mug next to Pat’s,” Price said smiling and looking up at his predecessor.
Billy Price came to Ohio State as a defensive tackle, but quickly moved to the offensive line. He redshirted as a true freshman, and was then in the starting lineup from game one of 2014. He’s been there ever since, even if it has been at a different position on the interior nearly every year.
Price is a two-time All-American, and now he is the best player in the nation at his position. He’s clearly been through a lot, and seen just about everything a player can hope to see. Never once was he alone on his journey, though.
“The support’s been phenomenal,” he said. “Again, I have to give a lot of credit to the training staff here, Coach Mick, the strength staff, everybody and then the position coach, Coach Stud, Coach Meyer and the offense too because as an individual award goes, it’s based on team success as well. So you really can’t just say, ‘Hey, this individual was the reason why this award.’ It’s everybody has a cumulative role. So that’s a big thing of it.”