Ohio State football players Dwayne Haskins, Terry McLaurin, and Dre’Mont Jones took part in Monday’s Big Ten Championship Game teleconference. They answered question about their teammates, the season they have had, and also playing in the Big Ten Championship Game this coming Saturday. Here are the highlights.
+ It’s exciting to play in this game. They have worked hard to get to this point.
+ KJ Hill has been pivotal for the offense this year. He does a lot of great things on the field and knows coverages and is aware on his routes. Off the field he is a jokester and a great guy.
+ Defensively, Northwestern looks stout and strong. Talented zone defense that doesn’t make many mistakes.
+ The biggest thing Haskins has improved on this season is just being a leader on offense and holding everybody responsible. Also, he has gotten better with protections and understanding where everybody needs to be and needs to go.
+ “Parris Campbell is electrifying. Crazy fast.” He’s a great leader and sets a great example. Great person and a great dad. He is doing a great job for the offense.
+ Asked about the Maryland game and his development as a leader, he said he has always tried to be a great leader. It’s a process of finding the right ways to be a good leader. Running the ball is one of those ways. That gave the team some energy and a certain vibe and everybody fed off of that at Maryland.
+ Meyer’s message this week is that Northwestern is a tough team and they won’t back down. Ohio State will need to be at their best once again. They have to have a great week of practice. Haskins’ role as a leader is to make sure that he is on all of his Ps and Qs this week so that he can help the receivers and the offensive linemen.
+ The individual accomplishments are great, but it shows how hard they worked in the offseason as a receiving group and offensive line unit. The records are nice, but he wants a Big Ten Championship Game. He reflects on Sundays about records that he has broken a little bit, but he has too many other things to take care of to think too much about it.
+ This is an opportunity to win back-to-back Big Ten Championships, which is an accomplishment given the struggles this season.
+ It’s important that Dwayne Haskins is a leader and be more vocal, and to see his development over the season and especially against the team up north, “is what you want to see going down the stretch.”
+ It felt like OSU’s offense had an advantage against Michigan. They prepare for Michigan for 365 days every year. “This wasn’t just a week-long process.” Ryan Day and Kevin Wilson told the players they were going to be aggressive. The receivers knew they were going to get man coverage and that it would be an advantage.
+ Meyer’s message to the team that the Michigan game was great, but it’s over and they have to focus on their next mission.
+ “Motivation won’t be a problem because we’ve got a championship on the line.”
+ It’s exciting to be headed back to Indianapolis where he played high school and has been a part of Big Ten Championships. The best way to celebrate his senior season and getting to the championship game is to win it.
+ “I think it’s very important” to put their best foot forward for the playoff committee. “We just want to build on last week. We have really good momentum going into this game.” Northwestern will present challenges, but they have to focus on what they can control.
+ Asked to guess on what committee members thought of OSU, he said up until last week they probably doubted their ability to be consistent. “I feel like we’ve shown improvement on all sides of the ball.” Having the game they had against Michigan is a statement and he hopes that win holds weight, but without a win over Northwestern, none of it matters.
+ “We love Lucas Oil Stadium.” It’s a fast track and the skill players love playing there.
+ “I am super excited” for the Big Ten Championship Game and he can’t wait to add another monument to his legacy.
+ The message from Meyer is that this team needs to be an elite warrior. You celebrate a victory, then you have to turn to the next mission.
+ Before the Michigan game, people were doubting them. Saturday they proved how good they can be.
+ Northwestern has a good balance between run and pass. They have a really good quarterback and he’s probably the first or second-best QB they have seen this year.
+ This was the year individually that he wanted to have when he decided to return, but the focus has always been about winning a championship as a team. Things are coming together and the next step is winning a Big Ten Championship.
+ They went into the Michigan game saying that “this game didn’t have to be close.”
+ The linebackers are playing to prove everyone wrong right now. Saturday was one of those games where they shut up the doubters.