Camp Meyer: Tuesday Observations

By Kyle Rowland on August 7, 2012 at 7:35p
Meyer won't tolerate special teams errors.

Day Three of Ohio State’s fall camp brought the first day of contact with pads on. It also featured more impressive play from the Buckeyes’ freshman class. Names like Noah Spence, Adolphus Washington and Jamal Marcus may become household sooner than many expected. The stalwarts – John Simon, Michael Bennett and Johnathan Hankins – aren’t being shoved aside, however.

Following practice, offensive coordinator Tom Herman said his unit is “light years” ahead of where they were after the spring game. But if Ohio State plans on going undefeated, a vast improvement will need to be made. Braxton Miller is the catalyst and his cast members, from Carlos Hyde to Michael Thomas, have steadily progressed.

  • Entering this season, Luke Fickell said he feels much more comfortable than last year.
  • The expectations have not changed, according to Fickell. The objective this season is to win as many games for the seniors as possible. That point was reiterated by every person we talked to.
  • Fickell said he wasn’t sure if the linebacking corps has three starters right now.
  • The biggest thing missing last season, according to Fickell, was a leader at middle linebacker. That role falls on Curtis Grant’s shoulders this season.
  • In the locker room, there are defensive numbers posted that the defense has to cover if they are to be deemed a great Ohio State defense.
  • Nathan Williams is clearly ahead of schedule. He participated in a contact drill today. When he wasn’t on the field, he was using the sleds on the sideline.
  • Bradley Roby mentioned the other day how he wanted to play offense and defense. Fickell quickly nixed that idea, saying he should concentrate on being great at one thing.
  • Like Urban Meyer yesterday, Fickell specifically mentioned Jamal Marcus. Said he doesn’t know a whole lot yet, but he just goes out and plays hard and fast.
  • Ryan Shazier had a very productive freshman year, but he said he actually played too fast. He said he would just run fast and hit the hole.
  • Over the summer, Shazier said he spent a lot of time watching film and realized there were a lot of missed tackles and why he missed them.
  • Straight from the horse's mouth, Shazier said he eats six meals per day, and his playing weight is up 25 pounds to 230.
  • Roby had an easy interception of Miller on an overthrown pass to Devin Smith. Roby made a nice read on the ball, but it was overthrown from the second Miller released it.
  • Noah Spence and Adolphus Washington are the two freshmen that have stuck out to me the most. Both are quick at getting around the end.
  • Washington was running at second-team defensive tackle because Adam Bellamy was absent.
  • An amazing thing, and it is noticeable, is how different guys' body types are now. And it's at every position.
  • Orhian Johnson blocked a 45-yard Drew Basil field goal. Johnson later suffered an injury but returned.
  • Jamie Wood, Ben St. John and Grant also suffered injuries. Wood was taken off on a golf cart, St. John had his ankle re-taped and Grant appeared to have cramps.
  • The team started practice with the circle drill. Unfortunately, we couldn’t really see it from our vantage point.
  • Herman said the OSU offense should have the entire playbook at its disposal by Day Six. Today was the third practice.
  • Herman called the offense a “4” after ending the spring as a “2.”
  • Philly Brown said he hasn’t been placed in the hybrid position that often. From what Herman said, it doesn’t sound like Brown will spend a whole lot of time there.
  • Brown did not have an opportunity to run the 40 and said he is faster than Roby, who ran a 4.31.
  • Verlon Reed was on the field today, but he is still sporting a yellow no-contact jersey.
  • Reid Fragel and Taylor Decker split time at first-team right tackle. That will be a battle all camp. Fragel is still struggling with pass-blocking. There is a clear delineation between the two in run- and pass-blocking.
  • Overall, the offensive line is much better than they were at the end of the spring. Night and day difference.
  • Carlos Hyde looked very smooth. He was fast to the holes and on the outside. He’ll be a threat all season. It is clear he worked on different parts of his game over the summer.
  • Rod Smith took some carries with the first-team offense. He looked very shifty a few times when he was in space.
  • Warren Ball had some good production on carries today but fumbled several times. Not how you want to endear yourself when there is a logjam.
  • Bri’onte Dunn also looked good. Definitely quick hitting the holes.
  • Thomas continues to impress. He catches almost everything thrown his way, and if he doesn’t catch it, he makes a great effort. Braxton Miller underthrew one pass significantly and Thomas literally went over Doran Grant’s back attempting to catch it.
  • Zach Boren had two touchdowns during red zone drills. He looks like he could be a huge weapon out of the backfield. He’s much more mobile too after dropping a lot of weight over the summer.

Comments Show All Comments

ODEEZ330's picture

i hope boren has a huge yr and i think he can be  a redzone weapon... all those times he sprang guys for touchdowns time to get some of his own
any word on se'von pittman, heard he looked good in spring prior to inury, have deisel and spence passed him up?

stark county football

Buckeyejason's picture

Sevon Pittman looks ALOT bigger than he did a year ago. Also apparently Adolphus is listed at 290? I can't imagine he gained 40 pounds or so since  last season. Suprised a bit that He's  playing tackle as well. 


buckeyedude's picture

Shazier went from 205 to 230. 25+ lbs of muscle(I hope). That dude is going to hurt somebody.



smith5568's picture

Really happy to hear Nathan Williams coming along so well. 

buck-I.8's picture

To the comment about Adolphous getting around the end, I thought he was working out at a 3 tech DT. Is he at DT and DE at practice?

DefendYoungstown's picture

No $hit Fickle feels more comfortable, he's no longer the head coach.

What we can't do in the air we'll do on the ground.

Berniebucks78's picture

LOL! My thought exactly. 

"Indecision may (or may not) be my downfall."

Defend Youngstown's picture

I challenge you to mortal combat. There can be only one.

dbit's picture

These are great! Thanks, Kyle

buckeyedude's picture

I agree. I kind of like the no bullshit facts, Kyle(not that I dislike any of the others).  Just give me the facts, Jack! ;)



otrain2416's picture

great work thanks!

We were born to love Ohio State and hate that team up north.

LadyBuck's picture

It is fantastic to finally be talking about football again. 
Thanks for all the news about the team. I'm definitely excited about this new, competent offense. 

farmerbuck's picture

Good to here Nathan is doing well and the offense is improving. They must have had a hell of an of season if you can notice their body types have changed that much! Great stuff! Man i can't wait!

You have to hate losing more than you love winning! GO BUCKS!!

zosima's picture

How did you not lead with Nate participating in contact drills?!?!?  I am as excited as the next guy about our incoming DLine, but I think Nate is ready to break out... While Big Hank is eating and Simon is crushing skulls, Williams will be collecting sacks and TFLs.

Bolt's picture

I hope he's back to his old abilities before the injury because I honestly thought he was going to be up there as 1A and 1B with Simon as the best player on the defense last year. Unfortunately microfracture surgeries are pretty devastating and so ridiculously difficult to come back from and be just as effective. Lets hope for Nathan's sake that's not the case, I'd like to see him have a fantastic season and maybe find a way to get himself to the league one way or another.

dmurder's picture

These updates are awesome!
Herman called the offense a “4” after ending the spring as a “2.”
is this to 5 or 10? You got to think this offense is going to leave some people jaws on the floor. A offseason of frustration for not playing for a MNF, Big Ten Title, No Bowl, etc.. Urban, will likley hang 60 and 70 on a few teams this year and not think twice about it.
With a great offense to see everyday in camp. This is defense is going to be ready for the spread and fly to the ball.

"We have always had the best damn band in the land, now we have the best damn team in the land"- Jim Tressel 1-03-03

cbm 1929's picture

...out of 10.  still hurts, but fits in with the Urban military-inspired 'tear them down and build them back up' theme

"“We were a two on a scale of 1-to-10 coming out of the spring in terms of throwing in catching and we’re up to a four,” Herman said after Tuesday evening’s practice. “We still aren’t really good, but we are still a lot better than we were at the end of the spring, which is a testament to our guys and how much work they put into the off-season.” 

Squirrel Master's picture

Especially when high praise for a great play by a WR is a 9. Urban thinks 9's are the best because 10's don't happen. A 4 for the whole offense is like hearing I love you from your father!

I saw a UFO told me to have a goodyear!

JW BUCKEYE's picture

When I hear about the vast physical improvements that have been made because of a change in the strength coach, it really makes me wonder what the old regime was doing.  I mean, Tressel won a NC, several B1G titles, and had a magnificent record -- imagine what those Tress-ran teams could have accomplished if those players had of been in shape!!  What did they do when they hit the weight room under Tress?  Everybody knows what everybody else is doing; why weren't the OSU coaches imitating what was going on in the practices and weight room sessions of the southern power houses like Florida and Bama?

"Kiss my Converse!!" -- Sho 'Nuff the Master

JW BUCKEYE's picture

^^my first post ever!!

"Kiss my Converse!!" -- Sho 'Nuff the Master

Squirrel Master's picture

Good first post ever! Although if there is any fault by Tressel in my mind is that he allowed his assistant coaches to drop the ball. Tressel was the reason those teams won so much, his assistant coaches were the reason they didn't win more! Bollman had no business being the offensive coordinator. Every year the Oline was a mess during training camp. Hindsight, it was a mess all season for the past decade!

I saw a UFO told me to have a goodyear!

Conroy's picture

A lot of it is hyperbole.  Players/coaches tend to say the same things whenever there is a regime change in the NFL or college.  

buckeyedude's picture

I still can't get the picture out of my head of that Florida Gator DE running around porky, plump Alex Boone in the 2006 championship, every friggin play. I want Ohio State with a defense like that! And I think we may have it, this year!



dmurder's picture

I think urgency has a lot to do with what is going on right now at tOSU.
Tressell won in year two for crying out loud 9 michigan wins later....

"We have always had the best damn band in the land, now we have the best damn team in the land"- Jim Tressel 1-03-03

cinserious's picture

Roby have easy interception. Roby make nice read on ball. Roby seek and destroy in 2012.

One day I will valiantly become a political prisoner of 11W jail.

thorvath22's picture


RobyCop patrolling the entire secondary since 2011.

flipbuckeye's picture

11W needs to run with this. A Robycop helmet with the stripes and buckeye leaves on a t-shirt would be glorious.

Sgt. Elias's picture

I lol'd

"Okay -- I've got an El Camino full of rampage here." 

Dougger's picture


I like football

Jdadams01's picture

RDS at 230 is a nightmare for RBs. Especially if he has kept his speed.

bassplayer7770's picture

He said he feels faster and stronger, so I say lookout opposing RBs and QBs!

spqr2008's picture

Roby strikes me as the personality type that would love that nickname.  If we made a shirt of it, he'd probably buy it and wear it around campus too.

Buckeyejason's picture

I don't think body types are too different besides the o-lineman. Every fall camp I remember guys coming In great shape and people ahhing over their physical change. Boone came into 08 fall camp as a senior lean and mean, that's just an example. I can name a ton of players that come in lookin great. This whole "players were fat slow and out of shape when Tress was here" is abit  ridiculous if you ask me.


Bolt's picture

I hear what you're saying but even the players are saying they've never had offseason workouts, diets, programs like they had this summer...and they should know more than anyone, they were there for the last regime and their program as well. There is some truth that under the previous regime they wanted some guys coming in bulked up and bigger with weight hung on them. With this regime its all about athleticism and speed so if anything they're making guys leaner and quicker. I know a lot of it is hype and perception but from everything I've heard from everyone including the players there has been a significant difference. This could be due to the excitement of the new regime and we'll see if the offseason in 3-4 years is as effective as the offseason in year 1.

Squirrel Master's picture

Anyone else getting images of a NASCAR package?

I saw a UFO told me to have a goodyear!

JJB's picture

This sticker is dangerous and inconvenient, but I do love Fig Newtons

Sorry, you said NASCAR and thats the first thing that popped in my head.

Squirrel Master's picture

Shake and Bake! I wouldn't mind if Spence and Washington called themselves that!
but really this line sounds like there is that possibility. I have said many times that I think Urban takes information from Belichick and incorporates it into the playbook, but how about a NASCAR front like the Giants have. Have a special package with Simon, Washington on the inside and Marcus and Spence on the outside. Nothing against the others but that is a hell on wheels speed rush line! I still think the starters should be Bennet, Simon, Hank and Nate Williams but a 3rd and long situation could be a great spot for a NASCAR front.
I just realized that video has no video of the Giants. Just pictures and a bunch of nascar crap. Sorry, but you guys know what I am talking about.

I saw a UFO told me to have a goodyear!

Buckeyejason's picture

I think you're expecting to much from freshman. 
If history tells us anything. There will be 1 freshman lineman that plays the most and makes an impact..or as the coaches would say "bring them along".
2011- Bennett
2009: Simon
2008: Nate Williams
2007: Heyward


Squirrel Master's picture

Expecting too much? Urban himself said that freshmen will see the field. How is my comment expecting too much? If I said they will be starters this season, then that is too much. For them to be apart of a rotational line is not! I don't see what you are saying.
History? Uh, different regime dude! and Urban has already spoken about Marcus getting on the field and everything I see and hear is Washington and Spence will too.
Again, not talking about starters positions! Rotation!
Oh yeah, different coaching staff means no loyalties too.

I saw a UFO told me to have a goodyear!

Buckeyejason's picture

Time will tell.


Squirrel Master's picture

Okay, I'm game!

I saw a UFO told me to have a goodyear!

sir rickithda3rd's picture

i agree it seems ridiculous.... but its not just a select few saying things like this its everybody.

mark may wins douchebag of the year... again

Buckeyejason's picture

I've seen the fall camp pics for the last, I dunno..6-7 years and I don't see any worldly difference. If guys work hard and eat well they'll come in shape. If not then they wont, easy as that, regardless if it's Litcher at the helm or Mariotti. I do think that theres more of an up pace no non sense approach to the practices now, which will only make them more mentally Stronger for the season. 


BuddhaBuck's picture

"...he was using the sleds on the sideline..."

They have sleds now? I don't believe it. 

Don't text while driving.

Defend Youngstown's picture

I'm just glad I can now LOL @ Jim Bollman jokes, instead of silently crying.

Buckeye_Mafia's picture

Awesome write up Kyle. So glad 11W has a beat writer now. Loving these updates. Thanks!

"At critical moments throughout the season, we learned about the character of this football team.  This was a team of true character, of true resilience." -- President Barack Obama