COLUMBUS — Ohio State head coach Ryan Day and a handful of Buckeye players met with the media following the Buckeyes’ 35-28 loss to Oregon on Saturday.
Here are the highlights of what was said.
+ Day wants to thank the crowd and everyone who came out. It was really loud in the 4th quarter. He is disappointed they weren’t able to come out with a win.
+ “It was a game we were never really in control of.” Oregon moved the ball well, the Buckeyes didn’t move the ball, couldn’t convert on fourth downs, and were always playing catchup. They have to learn from this and grow from this, there is still a lot of football to be played.
+ On the defense, Day said they were in a crack scheme and the replacements didn’t happen. But at the end of the game they got two good stops and the offense didn’t do anything with it.
+ On Josh Proctor, Day said Proctor’s injury looked “not good on the field.” It was a tough moment and he is praying for the best but it did not look good.
+ “There’s enough blame to go around here.”
+ Day said the offense was still a little out of whack even with C.J. Stroud’s 484 yards. “We want balance and when we’re not balanced we’re out of whack.”
+ On getting hit on the outside plays by Oregon repeatedly, Day said he is going to watch film and figure out exactly what happened. He doesn’t know other than the fact that it was the same play and they didn’t make adjustments so it was very frustrating.
+ On Kerry Coombs as a coordinator, Day said everyone on the staff works hard and they all make decision together. Day thinks it comes back on him because he is the head coach at the end of the day.
+ On the overall scheme of the defense, Day said anytime you get into that situation, you need to ask if it’s personnel, scheme, or coaching.
+ On his first regular-season loss of his coaching career at Ohio State, Day said it hurts and feels awful and is unacceptable but there’s a lot of finger pointing and they have to show resolve and resilience. It’s a lesson. “It’s not fatal but certainly hurts.”
+ Not converting on the 4th downs really hurt and were huge factors in the game.
+ The defense is still very talented and did some good things but it wasn’t good enough.
+ He wishes he could have had them run the ball a bit more in the last drive but he thought they were in a good rhythm throwing the ball. “There’s always second-guessing after a loss.”
QB C.J. Stroud
+ On the offense not clicking right away, Stroud said it’s something they need to fix execution-wise. The game plan is always solid, he doesn’t question it. “Whatever play they put out there we have to execute them.”
+ He felt really comfortable coming out into this game. He went through a lot this week with knicks and bruises and thanks God for being able to play in this game. Stroud said both Minnesota and Oregon are tough teams and hit hard. but playing at home was much better than playing on the road.
+ On the interception, Stroud said he rushed it a bit and Chris Olave did a good job. “It is what it is,”
+ On moving forward, Stroud said he has to be a leader. They aren’t going to crash, they’re going to stick together and it starts with him. Practice has to be better and they have to be very precise on everything. He needs to make sure the offense is on point with everything.
+ On the connection with Jaxon Smith-Njigba, “He’s a dawg. He is the reason I’m here at Ohio State.”
OL Thayer Munford
+ Oregon was hitting the gaps hard. “We all know we need to get better.”
LB Teradja Mitchell
+ On what needs to change with the defense, Mitchell said they have to keep their heads up and move forward. They have to get on the film, work on their run fits, and fix some communication mistakes. Mitchell thinks the scheme is there but they have to keep moving. The scheme is the scheme.
+ He feels a huge sense of responsibility as a leader on the defense.
+ Everybody has to want to get better.
WR Jaxon Smith-Njigba
+ C.J. Stroud has a big heart and he’s a competitor. “We’re going to keep going.”
+ On building chemistry with him, he said Stroud was in his ear letting him know that it was going to come and to stay alive.
+ On throwing for almost 500 yards but not capitalizing, Smith-Njigba said it was tough going all the way down there and not getting a touchdown.
+ On his impact, Smith-Njigba said it’s hard to celebrate his individual accolades with a tough loss. It feels good but he was to win.
DL Haskell Garrett
+ On not getting pressure on Oregon’s quarterback, Garrett said they were getting the ball out of their hands fast and they tried to close the pocket. “We were in the places but we just didn’t have competitive excellence. When we needed to make plays we just couldn’t.”
+ On telling the players after that the season isn’t over, Garrett said this is a long season and the main objective of getting to Indy is still there. Nobody should be hanging their heads down low. “They did it in ’14 we can do it in ’21.”