Wednesday Skull Session

By Sarah on April 25, 2012 at 6:00a

Namaste, ladies and gentlemen. On second thought, perhaps "Namaste" is too serene of a greeting.  

The spring game may have been a few days ago, but I'm hanging with a couple of dogs who were so pumped, they're still acting out their very own circle drill.

Add to that the news that Ohio State will be playing three night games in October, including the Nebraska game/Eat Too Brutus: The Return of the King, and there's a lot to look forward to this fall.

As for the other prime time Big Ten matchups that were announced, eight are part of the non-conference schedule, starting with Boise State at Michigan State on August 31. Two weeks later, the Spartans will welcome Notre Dame for another 8pm kickoff.

Three more are conference games: Wisconsin at Nebraska (September 29), Penn State at Iowa (October 20), and Michigan at Nebraska (October 27)1.

The 27th is the same date as Ohio State's 6pm road contest against Penn State as well as Michigan State at Wisconsin, a rematch of last season's Big Ten Championship Game.

If anyone is even thinking of getting married that day, please spare your guests and pick a different date, preferably one that's not during football season. 

YOU EITHER DO WHAT SIMON SAYS OR ELSE GO DOWN THE DRAIN. An Urban Meyer favorite from the beginning, John Simon did not see the field much on Saturday, due in part to his superior play in practice and as an attempt to protect his teammates from harm. 

Adam Rittenberg profiled the defensive leader, whose qualities reminded his new coach of one of his former players:

"I used the term Tebowish," Meyer said. "I've got to be careful not to do that. It should be Simonish. He's a next-level type player: leader, character, toughness, commitment."

He's played as both a DT and a DE, though he's not the ideal size for either position. Like last year when he led the Buckeyes with 16 TFLs and seven sacks, Simon will mostly line up as a defensive end, but according to Luke Fickell, he could switch over to middle linebacker if the situation called for it.

That ability to play different positions, plus his speed and work ethic, should impress NFL scouts just as it has his coaches, who are confident that he will only continue to improve. Fickell explained, "He's only scratched the surface of how good he can get with the tools he has." 

THE BEST IS YET TO COME. Simon's fellow defensive lineman, sophomore Michael Bennett, was one of the players chosen to chat with reporters after the spring game. Because it's a privilege given only to a select few, his efforts during practice must have impressed his coaches. 

On the subject of the new staff, Bennett described them to Doug Harris of The Dayton Daily News:

"They’re not trying to coddle you. They’re not trying to make you feel good. They’ll make you feel good if you’re doing a good job. But if you’re not, you’re going to hear from them first before anyone else."

Bennett is currently a first teamer, but he's not complacent since Nathan Williams will come back from injury and top recruits like Noah Spence and Adolphus Washington will soon join the team. To him, it's part of the challenge of being at Ohio State, and if nothing else, there's the incentive to keep in the good graces of his head coach. 

First team on defense, but more importantly, first team in Johnny's heart. Michael Bennett working his core with a plank hold

WE ARE ALL MADE OF STARS. Especially with OSU hauling in highly-rated, Michigan-hating recruits, it's easy to get caught up with rankings and assume they automatically predict success.

Andy Staples took a look at how the expected first rounders in the NFL Draft were regarded when they were in high school. Of the 32 players, 15 received a three-star ranking or lower. Staples points out, however, that fewer high schoolers earn the four or five-star label. 

In the projected top five, only Morris Claiborne was a three-star recruit. Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin III were four-star prospects while Matt Kalil and Trent Richardson were five-stars. 

Doug Lesmerises tackled how Ohio State will be represented in the draft. One of their five-star players from the 2008 class, Mike Adams, should be taken in the first or second round. Mike Brewster and DeVier Posey, who held the same top ranking out of high school, will most likely be drafted anywhere between the third and sixth rounds.

Boom Herron should follow, and three more Buckeyes—Nate Ebner, Andrew Sweat, and J.B. Shugarts—have a chance to be selected.

Ebner, who held no rating because he was a walk-on former rugby player, had a good showing on pro day and could make a name for himself as a special teams player, just as he did last season at OSU. Even if he doesn't get that phone call from an NFL team this weekend, he could go the free agency route. But if football doesn't work out, he plans to go back to rugby. 

GEE WHIZ. Gordon Gee sat down with The Lantern for two separate articles recently. In one, he discussed, among other topics, Urban Meyer and Jared Sullinger.

About Meyer, Gee praised how he has electrified the fan base, especially his efforts to involve the university and the students. However, he was disappointed in Sullinger's decision to turn pro, believing that every student should graduate. There was no mention, though, that Sullinger promised his mom that he would earn his degree eventually. 

Never one to keep his opinion to himself, Gee also sounded off about what he deems the "bad journalism" of Sports Illustrated and The Sporting News. If you recall, SI published an article about Tressel almost a year ago, and Gee's thoughts on the matter are summed up as, "I mean, the guy must have been looking at another school."

George Dohrmann, who penned the SI piece, fired back that the president "knows more about bow ties than he does about journalism." To be fair, Gee is the head of the bow tie cognoscenti, so zing???

As for The Sporting News story on Meyer from the other week, Gee doesn't exactly help his argument when he admits to not reading the entire thing, but he does defend hiring him and the coach himself:

"One doesn't hire a coach without talking with all the right people," he said. "One doesn't hire a coach without understanding exactly what his values are."

Some will say this is another instance of Gee's foot-in-mouth disease, whether he's correct or not. We should all know by now that Gee's gonna Gee. Both magazines back up what was written, and while each is capable of producing quality work, in this case, the guy in the bow tie has point. Those articles were crap2.

BRADY SPOKE. In Canton on Monday for the Pro Football Hall of Fame Luncheon Club, Brady Hoke was asked about the sign that compared the majors of Ohio State football players to those at Michigan The Team Up North.

Although the poster is apparently no longer up at the Woody Hayes Athletic Center, Hoke claims it didn't concern him because "I'm worried about Michigan, period." So says the man who referred to "Ohio" six times in his speech.

He will continue to focus on recruiting players from the Buckeye state, and if Urban tries to persuade Michigan commits to flip to Ohio State, that's supposedly okay with Hoke3, who maintains that nothing is final until Signing Day. 

All's fair in love and war, right?4

CLICK AND EASY. Draft Express projects Sullinger as the 6th pick and Buford as the 53rd... The price of football tickets across the Big Ten... A goose at Ohio State attacked a Michigan beat writer... April Goss is Kent State's first female football player... Movie mimic... Neil Diamond on his honeymoon... A dog playing catch with himself... Lessons from Highlights Magazine... Neil DeGrasse Tyson owns.

  • 1 Looks like we're still welcoming Nebraska to the Big Ten. 
  • 2 I may be biased, but if you thought those were top-notch articles, you're probably biased in the opposite direction.
  • 3 As it should be, considering his negative recruiting against Ohio State. 
  • 4 Wow, I just wrote about Hoke without mentioning what a tub of lard he is. Whoops...

Comments Show All Comments

AGL's picture

"Simon could switch over to middle linebacker "

That would .......  ?  Hate to be opposing rb or wr going thru middle!


BritishBuckeye's picture

GooseLad... also, Shazier crushes opposing players, I'd fear for a WR's life if he came across the middle with Simon there.

BuckeyeMike2002's picture

Would there be enough DNA evidence of the receiver to identify them after Simon hit them. Good Lord, that guy is monster.

Q: What is the difference between the Michigan Football Team and a bag of crap. A: The Bag.

Larryp713's picture

Simon at middle LB would also open a hole for one of the young studs to get on the field, as well as prep him for his best shot in the NFL. I hope it happens...



Defend Youngstown's picture

I'd love to see Simon blitzing from the Mike.

German Buckeye's picture

He is MLB size for the NFL - look at Ray Mal at Cincy or Urlacher....

blazers34's picture

no way to 'prove this' i guess, but Rey is no where near his listed height or weight.  In person seems closer to 6 feet.  Who knows on the weight, but I'd be AMAZED if it was over 245

Denny's picture

There's probably a record somewhere in Northern Kentucky on his height/weight, unless the cops just took it off his license. 


Grayskullsession's picture

LOL @ Simon switching to MLB. That would terrify all the RBs, WRs, and TEs. Catch anything over the middle and say goodbye to your consciousness.

"if irony were made of strawberries, we' d all be drinking a lot of smoothies right now."

hail2victors9's picture


I'm curious about footnote #3 (and this is not an attempt to flame).  What negative recruiting has Brady Hoke done against OSU or any other school?

Those who stay will be CHAMPIONS!

~Bo Schembechler

Run_Fido_Run's picture

Strangely enough, Hoke and staff do not provide to the press or public any and all "insider" documentation pertaining to their recruiting tactics, communications, etc.

We trust that what we've heard is probably true. It's not like we're taking Hoke to court and must meet some high standard of evidence.

I cannot recall any similar accusations (of negative recruiting against Ohio State) directed at the "snake oil salesman," or at Lloyd, Moeller, Bo.

Perhaps those previous coaches felt that prudence is the better part of valor? Whereas Hoke and staff observed what appeared to be a mortally-wounded, harmless animal, not suspecting that it would so quickly regain its stength?             

BucksfanXC's picture

I think she might have been being fetious, because by all accounts Hoke has avoided negative recruiting. Which is very admirable.

“Any time you give a man something he doesn't earn, you cheapen him. Our kids earn what they get, and that includes respect.”  - Woody

Jason Priestas's picture

I think Hoke most certainly brought up the potential NCAA problems Ohio State was facing when going after Ohio guys, particularly Kalis. He'd be stupid not to.

Whether that was him saying, "Ohio State is in a world of trouble. They could be facing a five-year bowl ban," or something as innocuous as "And you know, Ohio State still must go before the NCAA..." is unknown.

NC_Buckeye's picture

XC, UM staff and fans have been doing a lot of denying about negative recruiting. If those are the accounts to which you are referring, I wouldn't give them much weight.

I think Jason hit the nail on the head. If you look at what Kalis said after he flopped -- they sound like statements he regurgitated from a UM staffer.

Negative recruiting definitely went on. They can deny it all they want.

BucksfanXC's picture

Dunn said Hoke never used negative things about OSU. He also said Urban had nothing negative to say about UofM.

I would imagine everyone's definition of negative recruiting is different. Openly trashing, not praising, comparing academics/draft picks/etc in a bias/favorable light, etc.

“Any time you give a man something he doesn't earn, you cheapen him. Our kids earn what they get, and that includes respect.”  - Woody

Run_Fido_Run's picture

Mo Clarett would be proud of the Michigan beat writer: she got her Goose on.

BuckeyeLurker0509's picture

I thought Namaste was the perfect greeting :)

ArTbkward's picture

I really beginning to like the birds in Ohio, first the turkey vulture tries to take out Buck-I-Guy and now this.

We should strive to keep thy name, of fair repute and spotless fame...

(Also, I'm not a dude)

Run_Fido_Run's picture

"I'm the furious bird of the tranquil storm" - Pablo Neruda.

danavh4's picture

You can guarandamntee that Hoke as well as other Big Ten Coaches are going to attack and try to flip any and all of our verbals from now until NSD next year.  Bring it on B****es!

Go Bucks!

Michigan Fan: "We lose a long snapper and the whole team goes to shit!"

UFest57's picture

Ebner is a beast. I have been preaching this for years, Rugby has a much better chance to catch on in the US vs soccer simply for the more physical aspect of the game. I woiuld be pumped to see all of these guys get drafted, if not signed by a team.

Colin's picture

I love Ebner but I would have to disagree with you about rugby catching on quicker than soccer. There is a reason the US already has a professional soccer league. There are way too many immigrants here from soccer-loving nations for rugby to become more popular.

William's picture

Youths in the US play soccer more than any other sport, not gonna happen. Also MLS is expanding well, last time I checked there's no professional rugby league?

Riggins's picture

Youths in the US play soccer more than any other sport because it's the easiest to play. Period.  Just run around for an hour kicking the ball aimlessly.  I've been to youth soccer games.  Unwatchable.

You can be bad in soccer and not many will notice.  Try being bad in football, basketball, or baseball.  You stick out like Waldo in a black and white landscape.

Run_Fido_Run's picture

I disagree - the more familiar one is with a given sport, the more he/she will be attuned to the quality of play (or lack thereof). 

For example, I watched a couple of games from the World Cup that took place in 2011 (as compared to the 2010 World Cup) and the horrible plays in the 2011 version really "stuck out." For example, when the U.S. team lost to Japan, the U.S. keeper played like it was a "youth soccer" game.

William's picture

I don't think you understood the base of my argument. More youths play soccer, therefore more adolescents and adults will play soccer than they will play rugby. Soccer is growing in the US, the same can't be said for rugby. Rugby is essentially confined to white-collar kids and their families, the same used to be said for soccer in the US, yet now that isn't true. 

Nappy's picture

Heard an ambulance siren walking into the Shoe Saturday and immediately thought that Simon had already killed someone.  That would be a reality if he ever hits a slot receiver coming across the middle. 

I never saw a football player make a tackle with a smile on his face

wigbug5's picture

I'd like to see Simon mostly a d-tackle, but also switch to DE and MLB sometimes. Keep the offense guessing where he's coming from.


RBuck's picture

I imagine that if Simon plays some MIKE this year it would be purely for the pro scouts.

Long live the southend.

AGL's picture

Or to keep emergency room doctors employed


BucksfanXC's picture

Will next year's Eat Too Brutus be A Voyage Home or Goblet of Fire?

“Any time you give a man something he doesn't earn, you cheapen him. Our kids earn what they get, and that includes respect.”  - Woody

luckynewman13's picture

Unfortunately my man Neil DeGrasse Tyson does NOT own today. The Spanish wiped out the Aztecs, not the Mayans.

Run_Fido_Run's picture

True, but indirect contact with the Spanish - and direct contact with Native Americans who, themselves, had been in direct contact with the Spanish - immediately led to spread of disease in the post-Classical Mayan civilization. And, eventually (150 years later maybe?), the Spanish did subjugate the Mayans.  

luckynewman13's picture

Well then by that logic the picture would still be incorrect because Mesoamerican people--arguably--did predict the arrival of the Spanish:

not trolling, I just think this stuff is cool :)

Run_Fido_Run's picture

I agree. I love history - I'm not well versed on Spanish Colonial, but I find it very interesting.

To be fair to DeGrasse(?), he merely said the Mayans didn't see the Spanish "coming." Figuratively speaking, they didn't predict the devastation the Spanish would unleash on their continent, so why should we worry about their 2012 prediction?

I'm not worried, as millennial predictions are kinda like Sporting News journalism: just keep conjuring up some b.s. and one of these centuries the prediction/journalism might turn out to be true.     

Sarah's picture

I don't think Neil deGrasse Tyson actually said that. He's (scientifically) debunked the 2012 Mayan prediction before, so whoever created that picture probably based it both on that and Monty Python. 

spqr2008's picture

It has to be The Voyage Home

nickma71's picture

If crap you mean fiction, then you are correct.

Ohio State Ombre's picture

"The 27th is the same date as Ohio State's 6pm road contest against Penn State as well as Michigan State at Wisconsin, a rematch of last season's Big Ten Championship Game.

If anyone is even thinking of getting married that day, please spare your guests and pick a different date, preferably one that's not during football season. "


my sister is getting married on the 27th....lovely 

Squirrel Master's picture

I got married last year on the season opener against Akron. My wife did want to get married in November and I subtly put the kabosh on that one! Not only would I never miss a November game but I had alot of fans in my wedding and they would have been pissed!

We were married at 5pm, so me and the guys were at the bar watching the first 3 quarters before I had to jump in the limo and ride to the church. Slightly buzzed!!!

FYI, my buddy (the H) is a Florida fan! The red ties are the ones with little gray block O's in it. hehehe

I saw a UFO told me to have a goodyear!

osubuckeye4life's picture

Simon is a destroyer of worlds. He's going be awesome to watch this year!