First Michigan, Then We'll Talk Alabama

By Kyle Rowland on February 11, 2013 at 10:00a
48 Comments
Meyer is focusing on Michigan first, but Alabama looms

Urban Meyer did not hesitate. The questioner, recognizing where the direction of college football is going, asked if Meyer was declaring war on Alabama, the current king of the sport. 

Meyer’s response was swift and to the point. There is only one team Ohio State is focused on, and it is not to the south. Michigan will always be the bully on the block when it comes to the Buckeyes, but a new source of contention has entered Ohio State’s consciousness. And there’s no mistaking who it is – the Crimson Tide.

Since the November 2011 day he was hired, Meyer has been keyed on leading Ohio State back to college football’s mountaintop. That road goes through Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana and Mississippi. In other words, the SEC. It’s a fact not lost on Meyer, who a few short years ago used the league as a personal playground and point of affirmation for his meteoric rise up the coaching ranks.

When five-star safety Vonn Bell picked the Buckeyes over Alabama and Tennessee, he said Meyer was “going to bring the SEC” to Columbus.

“Urban Meyer’s on a mission right now to win a national championship,” Bell said. “We’re gonna try to beat ‘Bama and everything, so we’re gonna meet them at the national championship.”

Ohio State certainly has the look of an SEC North squad. They’ve loaded up on speed at the skill positions, athletic linemen and physical, hard-hitting linebackers. Back-to-back top 5 recruiting classes has Ohio State on firm footing and appropriately positioned to challenge the SEC and its seven consecutive national championships.

“I think there’s a little bit of a chase going on after the SEC,” Meyer said. “That’s fine. You’ve got to give credit where credit’s due. If there’s a perception that we’re chasing them, that’s fine. I wouldn’t disagree with you. We want to increase our speed on our team a little bit.”

Coaches from around the country, in the North, Southwest and West, have tried closing the talent gap for a decade, and in many cases, they have. Ohio State, Texas, Oregon and USC have stockpiled players that were every bit as good as their SEC brethren. But when it comes to putting it all together on the field, each had fatal flaws that contributed to their undoing.

One big difference in the current equation: Meyer lived it for six seasons. For a four-year stretch, the Gators were a behemoth among wanna-bes, racking up titles at an alarming rate and filtering in top-tier talent on an endless loop like Niagara Falls.

“We’re gonna try to beat ‘Bama and everything, so we’re gonna meet them at the national championship.”

Meyer gets all the credit in front of the cameras – and deservedly so. But behind the scenes, it’s director of player personnel Mark Pantoni that makes all the pieces fit together. The two coordinated multiple memorable classes at Florida and have done the same at Ohio State. Pantoni has become the No. 1 point man in recruiting in the country.

“Nowadays with the intensity of Facebook, Twitter and social networking, he’s my guy. I have to have him,” Meyer said. “I don’t know how you do it without him. I don’t want to put him in the same category as the strength coach, but when you start talking about the most valuable assets of a program, No. 1 is personnel, and he’s knee deep in it.

“He was a guy who was a student at Florida. He worked with our recruiting stuff and he was a ridiculous worker. He was non-stop and knew everything about every player. Instead of going to the guy in charge, I’d go up to Mark and say, 'tell me about so and so', and he knew everything. Players liked him. They’d come on campus and he’d show them around. I’d talk to them about their visit and they’d say, 'Pantoni showed me around', and I’d say, 'Who?' They just enjoyed being around him.”

At the U.S. Army All-American Bowl in San Antonio in January, incoming freshman cornerback Eli Apple reiterated Meyer’s point. Car salesmen and realtors in Columbus might be wise to give Pantoni a call and see if he’s interested in a second job.

When it comes to credibility, Meyer and Pantoni have it immediately and in abundance. Recruits believe them when they talk about winning at the highest level because it was a regular occurrence for six years. That past was read off like bullets on a PowerPoint presentation by recruits on National Signing Day, as was the Buckeyes' 12-0 season in 2012.

“I use the term flavor of the week,” Meyer said. “It’s momentum, whatever it is. There’s a lot of good stuff going on here. But this is the kind of place that should be going on.”

There’s plenty of high-fiving taking place in Tuscaloosa too. After all, Alabama owns three of the past four national titles and continued its recruiting haul this season with one of the nation’s top classes.

It comes as no surprise that Bell’s recruitment was arguably the most competitive in the country. When Meyer and Nick Saban lock on to a target, engaging and securing become the goals and, more often than not, the end result.

“Everyone's going to come to Ohio to get great players. They’re as well-coached players in America in the state of Ohio. It's old-fashioned football, old-fashioned coaching.”

“That was a street fight,” Meyer said about the process of getting Bell. “I mean, up until two minutes before he announced, I was on the treadmill because I couldn't take it anymore. I'm sitting out there – I wanted to get away from our coaches, and poor Everett Withers was driving me nuts. I had to get away from him.”

But shortly thereafter, Meyer received the phone call he’d been so eagerly anticipating. Bell was a Buckeye.

On the same day, linebacker Trey Johnson also signed with the Buckeyes. A one-time Auburn commit, Ohio State beat out several SEC schools for Johnson as well.

“That was nonstop,” Meyer said. A couple of SEC schools were just ruthless. I wouldn’t say ruthless, just did a good job going after them as hard as they could.
We hung in there and got it done.”

For the second straight year, in a footrace to match the success of Ohio State, Michigan got it done. Nine of the players from that class hail from the Buckeye State. It’s something not lost on Meyer.

“That school’s always had great Ohio players, a couple Heisman Trophy winners, too,” he said. “It’s not just them. Everyone's going to come to Ohio to get great players. They’re as well-coached players in America in the state of Ohio. It's old-fashioned football, old-fashioned coaching.”

It takes more than just in-state kids for Ohio State to compete for national titles, though. There’s no denying it’s still one of the top-five talent producing states. But it doesn’t provide game changers at every position. That’s why Meyer has deepened the Buckeyes’ footprint around the country. Of the 24 members of the 2013 class, 14 are from out of state, covering 11 different territories. 

Still, Meyer’s heart remains inside the state borders.

“The one thing I love about the players in the state of Ohio – the respect factor is there,” he said. “In my opinion, it’s greater or more than greater than any state in the country where the high school coach is still in charge of the program. When you go meet with a player in Ohio, you’re going to meet with his high school coach, and you can’t say that about all the states across the country. That’s my favorite part about recruiting the state of Ohio.”

From the time they’re born, Ohioans dream of playing in the Rose Bowl. Next January, Meyer’s latest batch of talented Buckeye State ballers could be lifting the crystal football in Pasadena.

Of course, the Michigan game comes first.

48 Comments

Comments

TMac's picture

201 Days till August 31st!! - that seems like entirely toooo long!

Red Shirt Ensign's picture

wow that is too long... so hard to believe we are that far out!

"Captain, over here, I've found someth... AHHHH!!!!!!"

 

dubjayfootball90's picture

this made me die a bit inside, but the good thing is, with every passing day, the future becomes just a bit brighter.

You can feed a bobcat all the chili it wants. That don't mean it's going to crap out diamonds.

input4u's picture

August 31st this year is my 40th Birthday !!  What a great way to celebrate with the opening of the season. 
I will have to pick an extra special bourbon for that occasion.  Any suggestions ?  My new standby has become Basil Haydens, but thinking I need to kick it up a notch for this great day!
 
 

osubuck57's picture

Killin me!! Hate the off-season, aside from recruiting!! Hard to believe we have to wait that long.lol

SCOTTC.

AndyVance's picture

I love the way the narrative is building: Meyer vs. Saban, Buckeyes vs. Pachyderms... The question is, if 'Bama isn't actually the team we have to topple for the National Championship in Pasadena next January, won't that feel a little anticlimactic? (Which, of course, will still be an afterthought 'cause we'll all be wobbling in our shoes from winning said title, but...)

Run_Fido_Run's picture

Or, if Ohio State were to beat, say, Texas A&M in the NCG this year, we'd hear that the Buckeyes did not beat a "real" SEC team, so it wouldn't count.

Buckeyevstheworld's picture

It will be the Sugar Bowl all over again.

"YOLO" = I'm about to do something extremely ignorant/stupid & I need an excuse to do it.

AndyVance's picture

Bingo: this was the exactly scenario I am picturing. Redacted or not, we beat a pretty good Razorback squad, and no one seems to remember that we beat an SEC team on the field. It's like it's never discussed. Similar to the Rose Bowl win - no one talks about how we trounced the vaunted Ducks offense...

Buckeyevstheworld's picture

I do hear about Oregon losing to Ohio State anytime they face a physical defense.

With Arkansauce, they went from being a great SEC team before Ohio State played them, to a team that really didn't play SEC ball, after the loss. Just remember, Oklahoma beating Uconn was considered more impressive than the Buckeyes beating and 8th ranked Razorbacks team.

That game(the Sugar Bowl) reminded me what a freak at QB Ohio State had. I absolutely loved Bowl game Pryor.

"YOLO" = I'm about to do something extremely ignorant/stupid & I need an excuse to do it.

btalbert25's picture

I questioned openly yesterday whether Alabama would even make the title game this year. I'm not so sure they do.  I don't think it will be anticlimactic, though, because it's still likely going to be an SEC team we face.  A&M is going to be really good next year. 
If anything I could see it adding a little fuel to the fire.  Say an unbeaten Buckeye team makes it to the game, and Bama has 1 loss and is left out because A&M wins the SEC and goes to the title game.  You know Saban wouldn't keep his mouth shut about Ohio State's schedule and being pissed that his team should be there.  He's always got something to say.  Then you know we'll have more epic recruiting battles.  The 2 schools are likely to have top 3 classes most years. 
I think if Urban wins that first title here next season(HUGE IF) and it's not against Bama, it's just another chapter in the saga.  That'll be his 3rd title in 12 seasons of being a head coach, people will start to question again, which of the 2 is better.  It'll take a lot of the media attention off of the SEC and put it squarely on Urban and the Buckeyes.  Saban won't sit by quietly while all that is happening.  They'll still be on a collision course.

buck-I.8's picture

I'm willing to bet on Alabama every year until they show me that they're fallible. Sure, you can cite the A&M game last year, but that was the same team that lost to a Florida squad that got absolutely exposed by a middling Louisville. 
Saban and his teams know how to get it done, no other program is bringing in better talent or putting a deeper roster on the field, and it's fairly terrifying every year to think about Bama, and realize that you can't pinpoint a single spot on that team that's legitimately 'weak' (They lose most of their OL this year but I'm willing to bet they reload pretty well).
The rest of your statement, however, I agree with. As a fairly objective fan of college football, if the 2012 Buckeyes had been bowl eligible and played ND in the national championship, I would admit that Alabama probably deserved it more. (We would have to beat Nebraska in the B1G title game, a team that is arguably worse than ~6 SEC teams.) 
So yeah, the Meyer-Saban clash is basically imminent, assuming that Saban doesn't run for the NFL, and Meyer doesn't retire early again. I'd think the debate with who is a better coach has never actually ceased, seeing as when Meyer was coaching in the SEC, Florida was winning against Alabama, and collecting championships in a tough conference, just like Bama is now.

btalbert25's picture

I am not saying I don't believe Bama will make it there.  I'm just saying I wouldn't be shocked.  I know they restock talent like crazy, but they lose 3 really good O-linemen.  Losing Jones is going to hurt, especially for a team who relies on running and a drop back QB who isn't particularly mobile.  They probably will just plug 3 new guys in and won't miss a beat.  That was my only thought about Bama not making it.
I would agree that debate has never ceased, but with Meyer having a down year at Florida, then a year off, while Saban has won 2 titles, I think people (myself included) would give Saban the nod. If Meyer comes back with another unbeaten season and a title in 2013, I think that debate gets hot. 
I had quite a debate recently with a couple of people who thought I was nuts for even suggesting they were close.  These guys weren't SEC fans either.  So, I think perception is that Saban is by far the best coach in the game.  Meyer has a 26 game winning streak and a 3 national title, people may change their minds a little bit.  Conversely, if Saban goes out and wins a 5th title this year, well then Saban may go down as the best coach in college football history.

Doc's picture

I hate to say it, but Saban may already be the best coach in college football history.  He has been dominant at every stop.  He won titiles at 2 different schools (both in the ESSEECCC) and he was won 3 of the last 4 MNC's.  Urban would have to do the same thing to get back in the conversation.  I fully expect that he will, but right now Saban looks to be the best.
It will be interesting to see how Saban fairs in the new playoff era.  Will he be as dominant?  I would suspect yes, maybe not 3 for 4 dominant, but still in the hunt every year.
I think Urban is going to need another year or two to really get the machine bullet proofed.  I'm not totally convinced that the offense is going to be lethal next year, and that the Silver Bullets are completely back.  We are on the right path and we are B1G dominant, but need a few more cogs to really finish the equation. 

"Say my name."

btalbert25's picture

If Meyer gets a 3rd title in the coming years, and Saban stays at 4, it'd be splitting hairs about who is truly the better coach.  Saban brought LSU and Bama into national prominence.  Urban made Utah a power, built Florida to a program that was better than it had ever been, and completely turned around Ohio State in 1 season.  Give him a third title in his 12th or 13th overall season as a head coach and he's right there with Saban.  It took Saban til his 17th season to get his 2nd title.
At this point, it's closer than others would like to admit.  Saban, to me gets the nod, I mean he has 4 titles for crying out loud lol.  The gap isn't that great though.

Run_Fido_Run's picture

Bama will be in the running this year. Their schedule is pretty weak. They play Texas A&M in week 2 on the road, but then probably wouldn't face another legit top 10 team until the SEC CG, if they get there (LSU lost all those underclassmen and I'm just not convinced they'll be back to the same level they were a few years ago yet). 
I also agree with Talbert, though, that Bama losing 4 OLmen will hinder their offensive production this year. They ended up 16th in rushing (5.59 yds/carry) in 2012, which is awesome for a pro-style attack. Keep in mind that most of the teams ahead of them were running option and spread-to-run offenses.
Bama also help up pretty well against SEC pass rushes (46th in sacks allowed), even though Saban hates to throw the ball over the middle, so he runs a lot of slower-developing long sideline routes s- you know, like the "deep" 18 yard sideline routes that Boeckman used to hit regularly in 2007, but didn't have time to throw in 2008. Plus, AJ McCarron is the kind of QB who likes to sit in the pocket for 5 seconds, fixing himself a sandwich, before finding a receiver. 
I see these two trends for Bama's offense next year: 1. They won't run the ball as effectively and their overall production will drop a bit; 2. They'll be forced to rely more on their passing game, AJ will get pressured a lot, he'll throw some more INTs, etc. (McCarron was #1 in passing efficiency in 2012). So, basically, Bama's loss of 4 OLmen will mean that they'll have to take more risks to move the ball and score points.
What might make up for these issues, though, is that Bama's defense might be even better than it was in 2012. Yes, Bama was #1 in rushing, #1 in total, and #1 scoring defense in 2012, but I those numbers were a bit skewed, with Bama's mediocre schedule and SEC offenses being pretty woeful in 2012. UGA and Texas A&M lit them up. Not counting games against poor competition, LSU had one of their better offensive games against Bama. 
FEI ranked Bama's defense as 4th in the nation. If Bama can play even better on defense this year, they'll be a monster again. Otherwise, I seem them as a bit more vulnerable than last year.    

Catch 5's picture

Fido, while I agree wholeheartedly that the OL is paramount to any offensive performance, I feel you have a couple of points off.  First, Bama is "only" losing 3 linemen.  Cyrus K. and Anthony Steen (LT and RG) are both returning.  The projected center has had a lot of reps replacing Jones (who I do believe will be greatly missed) and the staff felt comfortable with him were Jones unable to go in the NCG.  Add to that Arie K. will be returning (competed for starter with Steen before an ACL injury) and the line is a little better than you portrayed.  Add in the TE pool that they have and the talent at RB that has stockpiled, and I don't expect to see much if any decrease in production.  Secondly, AJ's sacks more often come from him tucking and trying to get a few yards too early.  I feel that he gives up on the play too quick sometimes.  Another year and he should be better in that area as well.
While I am not convinced that OSU would have jumped Bama to get into the NCG this year were they eligible, I have little confidence that Bama can survive any loss next year unless a few of the teams on their schedule step up in a big way.  I don't see OSU's being any better, but based on the way they look now (which always changes with the season) there is no way an undefeated OSU gets passed over by a 1-loss Bama in 2013 - and any SEC team you manage to beat in the NCG (it won't be A&M) would be a quality win.
That said, given the schedules, talent, and coaches, how can you choose anyone other than Bama-OSU in the title game? <--which means there is no way it is happening :(

Make their asses quit! - Nick Saban

Run_Fido_Run's picture

Catch 5 - thanks for the reply. I was falsely under the impression that Bama was losing 4 regular OL contributors, but not necesarily starters.
Also, when I refer to a drop off in OL dominance, I mean that compared to 2012, when Bama had one of the better OLs that I've ever seen. No doubt, they have excellent talent and good experience waiting to rotate in, but I see some degree of dropoff as inevitable. If Bama's 2013 OL is 4.0 on scale of 5.0 instead of 5+ (off the charts), that can make a big difference. "On any given Saturday" in the SEC, one of those DLs - Ole Miss? Tenn? LSU? SEC CG opponent? - might catch fire and create havoc in Bama's backfield. 
Perhaps I mischaracterized McCarron's pocket tendencies. Anecdotally, I just remembered a few big plays from the 2012 season when McCarron was given a lot of time and hit some long-developing big plays down the sidelines. But perhaps those were not typical examples.
Anyway, though, McCarron was playing behind the best OL in the country, that was mauling defenses to the tune of 5.6 yds/carry. Bama has a great RB screen game. And yet McCarron still managed to get sacked a decent number of times - you suggest because he had happy feet at times. Perhaps he'll improve on his pocket awareness and the sack numbers will actually go down this year. Maybe. But I see things swinging back a bit in the other direction, with McCarron being due for more than 3 INTs this year and maybe having a few games when he gets beat up a little and is forced to play in helter skelter mode for a change (which is usually what Bama does to the opposing QB).
Saban is somewhat similar to Jim Tressel in that he doesn't like to take a lot of risks offensively - e.g. throwing over the middle. His style of passing offense, though, tends to involve slower developing routes, which require lengthy protection. Again, Bama's protection is helped tremendously by great RBs, great RB screen game, etc., but I see McCarron having to win a few more games this year on his own. Well, he's pretty damn good, but let's see how he and the relatively inexperienced OL do over a full season.
Yes, Bama should be favored to back in the NCG. But my hunch tells me that 2011 Bama > 2012 Bama > 2013 Bama.  

CowCat's picture

 Alabama is a beatable team -- They basically are playing Tresselball with better players:  Dominant defense, physical run-oriented offense, play action passing ...
But, like Tressel's teams, they're not built to score in a hurry if they have to. 
So IF a team can run up the score early on them (a big IF for sure), they can be exposed.
I think we have a coach, players and scheme that can do that (see 2006 NC game).   Sure Saban beat Meyer, but that was after Tebow left.

"We get paid to score touchdowns, not kick field goals"
-- Urban Meyer

IBLEEDSCARLETANDGRAY's picture

The SEC doesnt get a team into the NCG against us it'll be just as satisfying poking that crystal football in their collective faces. This could've been you. Aw, so sowwy. Guess your reign of terror is over. Sure breaks my heart :)

"Sherman ran an option play right through the south" - Greatest Civil War analogy EVER.

btalbert25's picture

I love his PC answer to the question about waging war on Bama.  Vonn Bell didn't mention Alabama in his speech on his own.  That idea was planted in his head.  He constantly challenges his staff and himself to be better than their peers in Tuscaloosa.  His answer shows how much he gets it though.  He knows people want him to hate Michigan above all else, even if behind the scenes they are targeting the Tide. 

Run_Fido_Run's picture

Good point - Urbz being careful to reiterate that Michigan will always be the rival and therefore the program that Ohio State is tacitly "declaring war on" was partly about smart PR. 
Yet it's also because Michigan is a constant, tangible target - every year, it will never change, Ohio State must go through Michigan before it can realize any of its postseason dreams. Within the red circle scrawled around the 12th game on the schedule will always be written "TTUN."
That doesn't mean, however, that The Game is still the culmination of the season and the ultimate goal like it was in the 1970s. Urbz is making no bones that the Buckeyes need to get through Michigan to get to the real prize - a crystal trophy. However, the hypothetical opponent in the NCG is not constant. Bama has won 3 of the last 4, but might not be in another NCG for 10 years, for all we know.
In that sense, chasing Bama - declaring war on Bama - is more an abstract pursuit of program supremacy. Right now, Bama is the supreme program and the SEC the supreme conference, so it's appropriate and illustrative to chase the benchmarks they've set.
Metaphorically - we set out to be more like our enemy, so that we can catch up to him, but then surpass him. Maybe when we catch up to where the enemy is/was, though, he's gone at that point. Yet the goal was never really to defeat him so much as become supreme. Thus the "abstract" target served its purpose whether we ended up facing him or not.

btalbert25's picture

I completely agree, the goal isn't neccessarily to face Bama and win head to head (though that would be nice), it's to be better than Bama.  Honestly, the only battles they ever have could be recruiting.

AndyVance's picture

From a PR standpoint, I thought Meyer's answer was pitch-perfect. We're not looking too far ahead - we all know we're aiming for the NCG, but we're focused on beating TTUN and winning the B1G title. We all know 'Bama is the ultimate target, but we won't paint ourselves as being the underdog scrapping around the ankles of the 800 lb. gorilla. He said exactly what he should have said.

BoFuquel's picture

One at a time,Every Game Matters. Keep Calm And BUCK"EM All.GO BUCKS!

I wish I didn't know now what I didn't know then.

WoodyHayesHaymaker's picture

It's amazing to me how people just assume we will be in the title game next year.

buck-I.8's picture

I disagree. I don't subscribe to the theory that the best records are automatically the teams that should get into the championship. I actually hope AP voters vote in preparation for the deliberations involved in the playoff creation system. If OSU doesn't win all their 'easy' games in convincing fashion (as they didn't this year), I see no reason to reject considering a one-loss team over them.

RedStorm45's picture

I'm just saying people are thinking the NCG should be a real possibility because we have a great chance to go 13-0.  I'm not saying undefeated = NCG but we'll be preseason top 5 so we'll be there at the end if everything goes as planned. 

buck-I.8's picture

Oh, if you just meant that it's real possibility, I fully agree. Even given my rationale, I doubt AP voters in practice will push out an undefeated OSU team in favor of a 1 loss team, it's just a personal ideal of mine. I don't expect to be at the WHAC a year from now admiring a crystal football, but I wouldn't rule it out.

chicagobuckeye's picture

I don't think you will ever see an undefeated OSU team passed over for a 1 loss team. What people seem to forget is that it extremely hard, regardless of schedule, to go undefeated. If you are able to put together 13 straight games with no losses then the only knock would be if 2 other teams were also undefeated. As shown in recent history it very rarely occurs where a team goes undefeated. How many teams can claim that title in the past year?

buck-I.8's picture

I agree with you, but if you read my above post, that's what I'm drawing from. Not that I think it will happen, but that the voters should keep the possibility in mind. It was more a normative statement based on my own ideals

Run_Fido_Run's picture

SE Buckeye: perhaps you can show me an example of a commenter who assumed that Ohio State will be in the title game next year, keeping in mind the relevant meaning(s) of "assumption":

as·sump·tion
noun
1. something taken for granted; a supposition.
2. the act of taking for granted or supposing. Synonyms: presumption; presupposition.

LouGroza's picture

Square peg meet square hole.

Knarcisi's picture

We may not assume it, but we do expect it.  So does Urban.  He came here to bring us championships.  We should expect it.  With the team we have coming back, and our schedule, it does align for 2013. 

WoodyHayesHaymaker's picture

That's fine, but I'm just saying, expecting to make the title game usually ends in disappointment.

Knarcisi's picture

Agreed, and that's why I'm disappointed every year when we don't win it.  I'll live with it, but that should be the expectation and the goal. 

WoodyHayesHaymaker's picture

So in the last 40 years, you've been disappointed 39 of them?  That's a rough way to be a fan.

Knarcisi's picture

Yes, but it doesn't take away from a great season, having a great program, and being a proud Buckeye.  You cheer for Ohio State, and kids come to Ohio State, to win championships. 

Doc's picture

If you're not aiming at the top prize every single year you're not doing it right.  Plain and simple.  Flounder keeps talking about winning B1G championships, while Urban talks about winning National Championships.  There is a fundamental difference in that line of thought.

"Say my name."

WoodyHayesHaymaker's picture

There is a difference between aiming and assuming.  Besides, I'm talking about the fans, not the players or coaches.

RedStorm45's picture

I liked Stan Drayton's philosophy with his player group (RBs) - telling them his goal is to go and out-recruit the room.  I don't know if the guys believe him, but that's the mentality with recruiting.  We've got to go out and get players that are better than those on our roster currently.
 
With Saban's age, I'm not sure how big the window is for the Meyer v.s. Saban "war."  The two may never coach against each other in a NCG or they could meet 4 of the next 5 years.  I just don't see Saban being at Bama for more than 5 more years.

Bam_Childress's picture

CAN WE TALK ABOUT SOMETHING ELSE?!?!?! THE SUSPENSE IS KILLING ME HAHA

5 ft 9 in - 185 lbs - ALL HEART

LouGroza's picture

But just imagine the absolute media frenzy if it, Meyer vs. Saban, ever does actually happen. Good golly Miss Molly you thought the Harbaugh super bowl was tough to hear about incessantly. They would have over a month to build this one up.

Doc's picture

That would all be good pub for OSU and recruiting.  Granted we would HAVE TO win to get the MNCgame Monkey off our backs and shut up the ESECPN narrative.

"Say my name."

Bucksfan's picture

Had we not been bowl banned, Urban Meyer would not have been asked this question.  Ohio State would have won the Big Ten at 13-0, and they would have gone to Miami and kicked the living crap out of Notre Dame.  The question may have been posed to Saban, though, whether he is competing with Ohio State in order to win another national title.  So...

buckeye76BHop's picture

Great article Kyle...great info.  You can't say much more than this team is going to be great.  The mission is simple...go after the best and beat them.  All IN!#Juice and so on...is it August yet?
;-)

"There's nothing that cleanses your soul like getting the hell kicked out of you."

"I love football. I think it is most wonderful game in world and I despise to lose."

Woody Hayes 1913 - 1987