Presser Notes: Troy Week

By Chris Lauderback on September 17, 2008 at 7:00a
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As expected, there weren't any fireworks or "I'm a man, I'm forty" diatribes from Coach Tressel in yesterday's presser. Also as expected, the Vest didn't offer up much useful information as he reflected back on the, as Corey called it, the Crapper in the Coliseum.

Showing he hasn't lost his sense of humor, Tressel jokingly referenced the city's electricity problems with regard to reviewing game tape:

Everyone have their power back? I asked that question in the team meeting yesterday thinking four or five of them would say we don't. I'd say 75% of them had their hand up that they don't have power. Oh, well, that's why we're here, I guess. I was hoping on Sunday when we got back to watch the film the power would be out, but it wasn't, but, no.

Rightfully, Tress gave USC the props they deserved and discussed the fact that players, coaches and fans should expect that OSU be the best and therefore be unhappy when results are less than the best. With that, he cited penalties and turnovers as key killers to any hopes of escaping victorious last Saturday:

Obviously penalties. There's no way that you can back yourself up when you're playing against Southern Cal's defense. Southern Cal's defense is excellent, and when you throw a touchdown, you can't have a penalty. A couple plays before that, when you throw a route that gets us down to the 2 yard line, you can't have a penalty. Earlier in the game at the end of the 15-play drive, which I'm not sure how many 15-play games there will be against Southern Cal this year, but at the end of the 15-play drive, you can't have a couple 5-yard penalties. So first and foremost, you have to be penalty-free. Obviously if you're going to stay in the battle and the fray and the toe-to-toe and go the full round with Southern Cal, you can't have turnovers, especially turnovers for touchdowns.

The most exciting news came with the already posted revelation that Pryor will see the majority of snaps with the ones in practice and he'll likely see 50% of the game snaps against Troy assuming he doesn't stink it up in practice as the week progresses:

We said if we had a game last night with what we were planning to do, that we envisioned that it would be 50/50, but it will be affected by what we do in practice, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, and obviously what occurs during the course of the game.

It doesn't appear that Tressel expects Pryor to do anything but enhance his chances of seeing more game action due to his innate ability to improve with limited practice snaps - ie. he seems to truly learn from watching:

I think what's been impressive to me about Terrelle is if you take the 20 some preseason practices, Todd probably had 50% of the snaps, Terrelle had 25%, and so did Joe Bauserman. And then you move into the games, Todd probably had 75% of the snaps in the first game and the other two guys shared 25%, and then in the OU game, Todd probably had what, 95% of the snaps, yet Terrelle has progressed with the lack of snaps in practice and the game more than you think he would. I've seen a freshman get kind of thrown into the fire and grow every practice and grow every game because he got so much experience. I've seen him grow with a little bit less experience, which means he's done a good job of learning by observing, which is the hardest thing for a player to do. Most guys when they're standing outside the lineup, I have two right in the front row that, they're not thinking solely about what they can learn. Now, these guys probably did. But that's been impressive to me about Terrelle is he's had limited snaps, yet considerable improvement.

Tressel went on to talk about how well Pryor handled the atmosphere and that even though Camp Randall will pose a greater challenge, he's not worried about TP from a hostile environment perspective. I'm not sure I'm convinced of that simply because the Coliseum is not a loud, intimidating stadium but I'm convinced Tressel will give TP plenty of opportunities in road venues.

On the injury front, Tressel offered updates on Beanie as well as Rehring and Denlinger, if you're interested:

I think Steve will be out. I think we'd get Andrew Miller back in. Todd Denlinger will give us more time, I think he only got in a snap or two Saturday. Who else was out? Well, Beanie right now is listed as questionable by the medical staff. He did all of the cardio and straight line and all that stuff yesterday. Today will be the day where he has to go back and do all the cutting and all those kinds of things and that's where we got our setback last week, so we'll have to see how that goes, but we'll update that day-to-day.

To further clarify Beanie's status when asked if he would heal without needing surgery, Tressel made it clear surgery wasn't in the forecast:

That's what I've been told, yeah. Have I studied the MRI like Coach Bruce when he used to do the x-rays? No. That's out of my league. But from what I've been told, absolutely.

Expounding on what will happen with Rehring out, Tressel indicated some of the kids will indeed see more time:

We went two different ways at the end of the game went Bryant Browning into guard and Jamie Shugarts at tackle and went Andrew Miller into guard. We did both those things yesterday. Michael Brewster had some time at guard. We only ran about a dozen plays as a team yesterday, but I think that might have been the combinations that were in.

Sticking with the offensive line, he did offer some curious comments about the play of Boone and Person, among others. Not sure if I agree with this stuff, but I'm just some doofus with high speed internet:

I thought that Ben Person played better Saturday than he did his first two games, was my opinion. I thought Alex Boone played fairly well, I don't know that he was extraordinary. But I thought he played fairly well. Of course Bryant Browning had to play a couple different positions. Jimmy Cordle had tough duty. They lined up in that defense, double legal, the guy on the nose the entire game, and that's tough duty, but he fought and he made some errors and got thrown around a play or two where he wasn't able to stay on and sustain, but I haven't heard any discussions of -- but it's a little bit uplifting to hear someone say that there's something that we ought to be talking about other than who the quarterback should be because it isn't that simple in this world.

Tressel did spend some time talking about the playcalling and the fact USC players went out of there way to say OSU did nothing that wasn't expected based on film study. A snippet:

That's kind of a typical response when you win, is that, man, things went just the way we planned them and we knew they were going to do that blitz and this and that and we knew that Southern Cal was going to do what they were doing, we didn't execute against it. So is that concerning? I don't think you can blow it off and say, are we tipping someone off or this and that, or do we have a tendency to zone blitz at this time or whatever, but you're really a good team when they know what you're in and they can't do anything about it. That's when you become the best.

I think I hit the key highlights. Again, if you want to read the full transcript click here.

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