Football

Live Updates: Ryan Day Talks Buckeyes, Operations During Quarantine

Ohio State football head coach Ryan Day

Ohio State head football coach Ryan Day will be taking part in a teleconference at 1:00 pm today to provide some updates on his football program, how things are working behind the scenes, and to answer questions about where things stand on any number of OSU football topics right now. We will provide live updates once the call gets underway. Just refresh for the latest.

+ There could be some reform this year in different areas regarding recruiting. If they can get official visits going in May and June, they should be fine, but if that doesn’t happen, they would hopefully open up some other dates for visits.

+ How long of a season would there need to be in order to feel like there is a legitimate champion to be crowned? Day said he hasn’t given that any thought. There will certainly be a lot of conversation about that “if we get that far.”

+ CJ Stroud and Jack Miller were very impressive when they came in and the way they were able to take their preparation to the field in spring. They have film and they can study, but there’s nothing like reps. They are both back home and they both have throwing plans.

+ How much time does the program need to get ready for the season? “I don’t know the exact number on that. That’s a good question.” Some of that depends on what shape they’re in before the pads go on.

+ Finding large areas to throw and run is a challenge. Linemen trying to find bags to punch isn’t easy. If you’re a wide receiver with no quarterback, what do you do? This is a challenge right now, but the coaches are doing a great job of being creative while also being safe.

+ Day is working on trying to come up with a good chili.

+ It was disappointing that they weren’t able to enhance the scheme this spring and get that going.

+ Day and his wife Nina have been able to binge Tiger King already. It was pretty crazy.

+ He has no go-to snack, but he has been into the crock pot a little bit. They are able to ship food to the players. There are also frozen meals for the local guys. For the players in the dorms, they have been able to give them money so that they can buy things.

+ On a daily basis, the players are being held accountable for going to class. They get daily updates and the position coaches make sure they’re going. The parents are working to make sure that happens as well.

+ On how the players are doing: “I think we’re doing pretty good.” The coaches have provided good feedback after their interactions. Online classes aren’t as foreign to the players as they are to you or I.

+ Each unit and position is asked to do different things, but then it’s also different for the individuals within those units because some players don’t have tools to work out with. Each individual is different and they have tailored plans for all of them.

+ How are coaches keeping players accountable? “There’s only so much you can do with that” because of the hours that the NCAA has mandated. If they have to check on the players to make sure they’re actually doing the work, “then we’re not much of a team anyways.” They are also talking with the families constantly. They’re not going to go down the road of monitoring players with Fitbits. They give them things to do and they give them guidelines so that they’ll come back close to the shape that they left.

+ He has a home office that he never used before now. Morning is homework time for his kids. After lunchtime they all try to get some exercise in for the family, then they all get back to work on school and work. “But you’re always on call.”

+ Nobody in the program has tested positive for COVID-19 that they know of.

+ Master Teague stayed in Columbus and is rehabbing “and will do a great job with that.” Teague is a very mature young man. He will attack the rehab.

+ It’s wasting energy to worry about the season being delayed or canceled.

+ Regarding working at home, it helps when the sun is out and you can step out and take a walk. It’s not as fun when it’s cold and rainy. But this does allow for reconnecting with the family. They try to keep their minds off the pandemic at night.

+ In terms of game readiness, this is a fairly veteran team. Regarding the early enrollees, they’re in the same boat as all of the early enrollees around the nation. There are bigger things to worry about than those guys missing spring ball.

+ Some players are still in the dorms. It’s a university policy that some students were able to apply for waivers to stay if they are from areas where it could be more dangerous to return to.

+ A daily schedule for him is watching film in the morning. It’s a great opportunity to study film. Then he goes to recruiting and gets on the phone. Then it is evaluating recruiting film. Then checking in with the staff to see if there are any issues with the players or team. He talks to Mickey Marotti two or three times per day.

+ There are two conference calls per week as a staff. They go through different areas regarding the players and make sure they are being taken care of.

+ Day would be in favor of having some type of mini-camp this summer prior to fall camp if possible. Some places have had nine spring practices and have had 20-hour work weeks, where OSU hasn’t had anything like that. It’s hard to come up with a model without knowing exactly what we’re dealing with timewise.

+ Everybody is a little bit different in terms of being able to work out at home. Not everybody has a home gym, so that’s where the strength staff gives them things they can do in terms of plans and videos on how to keep their strength and weight up. “Even if it’s running down the street.”

+ There are two sports psychologists with the program who have been sending out ways to stay mentally healthy. They are in contact with the players. Those resources are still available to the players and the staff. “This is a unique time. There’s a lot at play here.”

+ Regarding injured players, the ones who have gone home have had arrangements set up to have that rehab done back at home. If they are in town, they are using a facility in town.

+ The disciplined teams will likely have an advantage when football resumes nationally. The accountability is at an all-time high. “Character is really shown when nobody is looking.”

+ Where are the biggest ripple effects of not having an offseason under the roof of the WHAC, Day said it’s hard to say and has a lot to do with how long the quarantine lasts and what kind of shape the guys stay in. It wasn’t that long ago that players didn’t really worry about staying in shape over the summer, so it’s been done before.

+ There is a hope that there will be some workouts they can “capture back” when things are started back up.

+ They are trying to stay in constant communication with the players. The players are accustomed to feedback and structure, so they are trying to do the best they can in providing that structure and feedback. This week they had to make sure the players were able and ready to go back to class and had an environment where they could learn. In terms of working out, it’s all individual based. The players are spread over the country. The position coaches and the strength coaches have sent stuff out. Some players are just at their homes trying to stay in shape. “We want to try to maintain that the best we can given the circumstances.”

+ Ryan Day cannot comment on Trey Sermon because he is technically a recruit and the NCAA has put a stop on players signing financial aid agreements.

+ Did a great job in recruiting in the winter. They have been recruiting ahead and Mark Pantoni did a great job of staying in contact with 2021 players last year. There is a lot of excitement around the program and they have built up a relationship with the 2021 players and their families.

+ This is a very strange and unique time. Thoughts and prayers to everyone out there going through their struggles.

+ Governor DeWine, Gene Smith, and President Drake have done a great job of getting in front of this and leading the right way. The football program is following their lead and their protocols.

+ All organized activities at the WHAC are shut down. All academics have been moved online. The staff is doing a great job of communicating with everybody, and the student-athletes are doing a great job of communicating as well. There is constant interaction.

+ One day at a time, “we’re not sure what the future brings.” They’re just doing the best they can and telling everybody to take care of their health and their families.