COLUMBUS, Ohio — Ohio State head coach Ryan Day met with the media on Wednesday morning to provide updates to to the team and coaching staff since the end of the season in December. Day spoke on the number of players returning, the additions from the transfer portal, offensive coordinator Bill O’Brien and other coaching staff changes, and having five scholarship quarterbacks for spring ball.
You can read the highlights below.
+ Bill O’Brien is here working at the facility on Wednesday and Day has no update on his status with Boston College. O’Brien was the right choice because at Ohio State they are chasing that last 1-2% and he needed to be able to hand over the duties to somebody. O’Brien had a great background in the NFL and the SEC, as a former head coach and coach in the league, the experience of the quarterbacks, and culturally, he was the right fit.
+ The idea is to hand off play calling to Bill O’Brien this next season. This will allow him to see things from a wider view and it is an ideal situation moving forward. He doesn’t want to, he loves calling plays, but he knows with college football, his energy and time needs to be in other areas. It had to be the right person and O’Brien was that.
+ Ohio State is trying to fill needs with the transfer portal. A lot of high-end players wanted to come back and that set the tone for all of it, then they just filled in the pieces. It wasn’t a lot of numbers but it was about impact.
+ Sonny Styles has the flexibility to do a lot of things and he’s embracing that. As they get into spring they will figure out how it all shakes out but he has the ability to do multiple things and he is willing to embrace that, which is exciting.
+ Devin Brown is good to go with his ankle. He has had a really good couple of weeks. The quarterback room likes hanging out together, but it’s going to be a fierce competition this spring.
+ On having five scholarship quarterbacks, Day said it’s healthy. Players come here because they want to compete and they are all embracing that. They are going to try to get them as many reps as they can and be smart about it.
+ On hiring another defensive coach and filling the 10th assistant coaching spot, Day said they have a couple options and have talked to people but they are about a week away on making that decision. He feels comfortable going in either direction, defense or special teams, but it’s about finding the right guy.
+ On Tim Walton’s recruiting, Day said his personality, makeup, and character — he can’t say enough great things about him. His background of developing secondary play and the testimony of that in the NFL say a lot. He also played here and is a Buckeye. He is talented, competitive, good in a lot of areas, and the players have embraced his mentality.
+ Will Howard has done a great job so far. He is showing leadership in the weight room and is building credibility there, and that’s a big part of it.
+ On the running backs, Day said when he saw Quinshon Judkins was in the portal, he went to TreVeyon Henderson and he was unbelievable about it all. Henderson said if Day thought it would help the team, he was all for it. Day told Judkins that Henderson was staying and Judkins said he would love to play with him. It all started with Henderson and Judkins embraced that. Depth at running back will be important, and there are a lot of carries to go around.
+ On the month of January, Day said he needed to identify what was important moving froward after the season to figure out what needed to be done. He started with the roster, then went to the staff, and made adjustments. As a leader it was his job to put a plan together and create a vision — it started with a lot of the players deciding to come back, then the next step was adding the pieces and tweaking the staff. Now they execute the plan.
+ On Name, Image and Likeness, Day said it changes all the time and it’s something they all have to adapt to. Everybody involved has been working hard to make sure they are where they need to be.
+ “We want guys who want to be here.” Over time they have built a culture of development. Recruiting is competitive, but it’s their job as coaches to acquire as much talent as they can and go develop it.
+ The real story is the players deciding to come back. People around the country and in the portal saw that and wanted to be a part of it. They have unfinished business. Some of them could have been drafted fairly high, but to come back shows a lot about how much they have embraced being a Buckeye. “That’s reverberating through the building right now.”
+ On the offensive line, Day said O’Brien will watch the film and address from there. He has a fresh set of eyes and they will have a competitive spring to see where they are at. “There are some really good young players in that room, and now there’s experience, and that should matter.”
+ He is hoping this will be the most competitive spring they have had since he has been here.
+ The players from Alabama understood the rivalry with Michigan after having their season ended by them this past year. They all vocalized that in the process and they know what is coming at the end of the season.
+ C.J. Stroud said pressure is a privilege. And Day said he is right about that. They have an opportunity to go have a great season, knowing that there’s a lot of work to be done, but they have the right players in the right seats.
+ Day plans to be more involved with the special teams moving forward.
+ One of the things they need to do to win the game at the end of the year is have the quarterback be accounted for in the run game. “There just has to be enough of it to be accounted for by the defense.”