INDIANAPOLIS — Ohio State head coach Ryan Day spoke to the media again on Friday on day two of the 2021 Big Ten media days in an hour-long press conference.
Here are the highlights.
+ Fall camp will begin August 3rd.
+ The interior offensive line competition will sort itself out. Matt Jones’ reps last year did not surprise him. He is very talented.
+ On announcing a quarterback decision, Day said they would like to have it by the first two weeks of the preseason to get him reps but they will still give them all reps. Three guys will always be in the mix. But by two weeks into camp they would like to have a starter.
+ He wants to have the quarterback room around for 3-4 years.
+ The quarterback competition is even to him as of right now. They will see how much they have changed over the last few weeks. Their bodies changed through the summer so he is excited to see how they look coming out to fall camp.
+ The spring practices go into their body of work.
+ “We’re going to play the best player. That’s what it’s going to come down to. I don’t know if it’s as easy as here is our starting quarterback for the next three years.”
+ On the running backs, Day said they could play three running backs. “These guys will have an opportunity to play.” But he thinks you can’t play more than three. It may be more situational. Master Teague is the incumbent.
+ There will be a lot of sleepless nights headed into the first game with starting a new quarterback on the road in the Big Ten.
+ On leadership on the interior defensive line, Day said they are as deep and as veteran as they have been there. The secondary is veteran as well. It is less stress on the linebacker unit. There is a lot of unknown there. They lost four guys but the next linebackers have been here a few years and are ready to take the next step. The young guys can make an impact as well.
+ He is pleased with the secondary and Kerry Coombs. Coombs likes the role of being a coordinator. “I am excited to see these guys play this year.”
+ They wanted to have special teams solidified this year with a new quarterback and the issues they had last season.
+ Dallas Gant, Haskell Garrett and Sevyn Banks, who were limited in the spring, should be good to go for the first fall practice.
+ On Ohio State being considered the Gold Standard, Day said they definitely feel that. He thinks there has been a target on their backs for a long time and that’s a good thing. “But that means you gotta bring it week in and week out.”
+ “Talent is one thing but you also have to have maturity with your team.” He is hoping to have leaders like Terry McLaurin, Justin Hilliard, and C.J. Saunders this season. “That’s the recipe at Ohio State.”
+ On the changes in college football, “I can’t tell you which way is up right now.” There has been a lot of change.
+ “I am very impressed with Paris Johnson.” He is even better than we thought he would be as a young man. He has already shown leadership.
+ Strength coach Mickey Marotti takes the sport science but combines it with old school work ethic.
+ Kourt Williams is a special young man. The players would say he’s the hardest working person in the building. “We’re all dying to see him get on the field.”
+ On expanding the CFP, Day said the winner of the Big Ten conference should be in the playoffs, whatever that looks like. The things to consider with expanding are the number of games, wear and tear on the bodies, the venues, etc. But he does think with all of the changes in college football they need to balance staying up with the times but also making sure that they’re not making so many changes that one day they wake up and don’t recognize the game.
+ A 12-team playoff would certainly change their approach.
+ On balancing using two tight end sets vs talented receivers, Day said each year they figure out the best personnel. They want to get the best players on the field.
+ On a question from defensive end Zach Harrison regarding Jeremy Ruckert, Day said the goal is to get Jeremy Ruckert at least 31 catches to beat the school record.
+ Day enjoys building something special for this team and putting things together. Finding what it’s going to look like is exciting for him.
+ Mental reps are good but at a certain point players have to play the game.
+ The Big Ten wants to win a National Championship. He thinks they are in great hands and their goal is for a team in the Big Ten to win the National Championship. The goal is to position the institutions to get to that point. The best conference in America is here in the Big Ten.
+ On the pass defense, Day said they identified the issues. Greg Mattison retiring required some changes and they needed the right depth in places which they didn’t have last year. It’s either scheme, personnel, or coaching and last year it was a combination. He feels better about where they are now.
+ On the excitement heading into the season, Day said everybody is excited and he loves doing media day in Lucas Oil Stadium. “Everyone is fired up.”
+ On the senior wide receivers leaving the program, Day said Jaylen Harris was a medical decision and Elijah Gardiner decided to retire. Both players graduated.
+ Marvin Harrison Jr. is very very impressive. “There’s only one football but he will have his share.”
+ He is proud of the talent and the quality of people they have been bringing into the program.
+ If NIL was around when he played, Day said he would want to be sponsored be the local sub shop. His to-to sub was the chicken parmesan.
+ Garrett Wilson is hitting his stride.
+ On looking for a starting quarterback, Day said he is looking for consistency day in and day out and work ethic.