Urban Meyer on College Football Live; Says Tight Ends are Best He's Ever Had

By Jason Priestas on April 16, 2013 at 12:37p
Urban Meyer on College Football Live

Ohio State coach Urban Meyer appeared live on ESPN's SportsCenter as part of College Football Live's Spring Bus Tour Tuesday morning and discussed his team, what they've improved upon and his tight ends, whom he called "the best I've ever had."

On how he addressed fundamentals improvement:

"You break down the fundamentals of offense and defense. On defense it's tackling and disengaging a block. I thought tackling we much improved. If you remember, the beginning of the season last year, we were about as bad as I've ever seen. Ryan Shazier is a perfect example: The first five games, he's a guy running around, not leveraging the ball, not tackling and trying to strip the ball. And just through a series of hard work, practice and tape, he got better. The one area we're not very good at is the disengagement of a block and we've worked extremely hard. We're still not where we want to be with that."

Improvements at wide receiver:

"Our concerns were legitimate. If you think about last year, we were at times – I shouldn't say non-functional, that might be a little harsh – but there were a couple of position groups that were non-functional. This year, after spring practice, I think we have identified a legitimate All-Big Ten candidate at wide receiver and that's Philly Brown. Devin Smith has shown flashes of it, but needs some consistency. And then you have Mike Thomas, Evan Spencer and some other guys that are continuing to improve and need to continue to improve. Chris Fields has also earned a spot on our team.

"The tight end area is the best I've had and I had Aaron Hernandez at Florida. I have two legitimate guys that are very good blockers, good receivers, Nick Vannett and Jeff Heuerman, so we're going to utilize all of our personnel." 

On Hyde and the running backs:

"I love Carlos Hyde. He's better than I thought. I think he could be one of the best in the country. I have to be careful about him because he doesn't handle praise very well, but he does things – he's a 235-pound back and when he goes it's [something] and he went most of the time, not all of the time last year.

"Our backups are intriguing. You have three of them: Bri'onte Dunn, Rod Smith, and Warren Ball. They've all shown flashes of being very good. They're certainly nowhere near where they need to be to be the starting tailback at Ohio State. Then you have Ezekiel Elliott and Dontre Wilson coming in so we have some guys to evaluate and choose [from], but we have not picked a backup right now."

On how he'll handle the inevitable first loss at Ohio State:

"Well, those are the speed bumps. You don't want to handle it too well. I like the guys that get kind of – I guess nauseous isn't the right word – but sick to their stomach."

Video of Meyer's appearance on the College Football Live set Tuesday:


Comments Show All Comments

Hovenaut's picture

"On how he'll handle the inevitable first loss at Ohio State" - Sure hope not this year!
Is that Spielman to UFM's right (our left)?

jeremytwoface's picture

U.F.M will never lose at Ohio State!

And when we win the game, we'll buy a keg of boooooooooze!! And we'll drink to old Ohio 'till we wobble in our shoes.

dubjayfootball90's picture

yes, sir.

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

Doc's picture

Spiels and Urban together again, they're just like peas and carrots.  Urban is the man.  I love his honesty and straight talk.  Not a whole lot of double speak.

CJDPHoS Member

The Official DDS of 11W

TheShookster's picture

But there won't be a first loss...

He ain't even stretch doe!!

MediBuck's picture

That's reassuring. The TEs underwhelmed me quite a bit on Saturday...

"There is a force that makes us all brothers, no one goes his way alone." --Woody Hayes

toad1204's picture

Minus Blake Thomas's catch and carry I didnt really notice them.  Not sure if that's good or bad.

Nothing like dancing on the field in 02... 

GoBucksToledo's picture

I don't believe that Vannett played on Saturday.  I recall seeing him on the sidelines without pads on.

AllDay028's picture

Is the first loss inevitable?

Chief B1G Dump's picture

Man, this guy is a direct 180 from Tress.  Tells it like it is, no political speak.  We went from Cooper and the wild west era...to JT who cleaned up and classed up the joint...to UFM who says we're big, we're bada$$ and we're comin to getcha.
Interesting change of pace on the media speak from our last couple of coaches.

jeremytwoface's picture

I absolutely love this about him...
Some people might find it off-putting but I love it. There are always certain areas of the team that need work and aren't as good, but it's soooooo good to hear it from the coach.
It also serves as motivation for the players and, IMO, weeds the weak ones out. If you can't take the public criticism, you're at the wrong school

And when we win the game, we'll buy a keg of boooooooooze!! And we'll drink to old Ohio 'till we wobble in our shoes.

CowCat's picture

IMO Tress and Urban are cut from the same cloth  -- the Woody Hayes legacy -- but they show different aspects of it.   Woody was a no-nonsense, fiery, demanding, and driven as a coach (Urban), but he was highly educated, eloquent and philosophical off the field (Tress).
What both coaches share is a keen understanding of TOSU football and its legacy, as well as a determination to play physical defense, run-first-offense and great special teams.

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

bbase22's picture

If you follow Rece Davis on twitter he posted some pretty cool pics of the WHAC earlier today...especially Woody's old chalkboard

brandonbauer87's picture

Rece Davis seems like the kinda guy you'd sit at a bar and watch football with. 

Dougger's picture

i really think he's a secret buckeye fan.. he picked the bucks in the rose bowl i remember when everyone at the end picked against us. although him and chris fowler look alike, he is not a clown like most of the college gameday cast

I like football

osubuck57's picture

Love his take it or leave it approach!! ie,you either buy into whats going on in the program,or you pick splinters out of your arse the whole season.He truely makes them earn everything they get,whether it be praise,a starting spot,back-up,clip board holder.Nothing is ever given,or just because your an upper classman. LOVE THIS!!


pjtobin's picture

I have total confidence in UFM. He is a straight shooter. I love that about him. I hope to never see a loss again. Yet it is more likely going to happen at least once in what's left of my life. 

Bury me in my away jersey, with my buckeye blanket. A diehard who died young. Rip dad. 

MN Buckeye's picture

Yes, I appreciate Urban's no-BS style.  There is enough in this world to go around, so when the truth is out there it's refreshing.

tdible2132's picture

Did anyone else notice he said we have EZE and Dontre coming in at RB. Hopefully that doesn't make EZE mad, as I remember there was concern about him wanting to be the only RB in the class and Dontre was supposedly recruited to play the slot/H-back

Poison nuts's picture

I pray that wouldn't make him mad & doubt highly it would. UFM also said they were coming in and needed to be evaluated - didn't say what they would be doing...There are plenty of guys who could run the ball when they get there, Jalin is another one who can run. I don't imagine anyone will get angry because someone else may play a certain position. The best guys see the field. Be one of the best guys & you have no reason to worry....

"Do not pass me, just slow down - I can move right through you" Superchunk - Precision Auto.

FindogWestSalem's picture

It's really nice to have such confidence in a coach.  I am truly relaxed and excited about 2013.  There is no guessing with this guy. You know where you stand on his team.   In regard to Urbs comment about Hyde not handling praise well. Is he implying he gets a big head and doesn't give it 110% and takes a few plays off?  Sounds to me if El Guapo is coasting in any way, the backups may enter pretty quick for a series.  Might be a refreshing change of pace while getting Guaps focused. 

buckeyestu's picture

Love urbans' honesty. I love everything about urban. Hope the first loss in his time at osu, never happens.

Poison nuts's picture

I love the honesty too...The man is fearless about shooting you straight. If I was a kid, I'd want to play for a guy like that. No BS, no sugar, just the truth. Might hurt sometimes, but you know right where you stand with a guy who doesn't blow any smoke...yeah, I really do love the new approach. Come on September!

"Do not pass me, just slow down - I can move right through you" Superchunk - Precision Auto.

RBuck's picture

If that was an interview with Hoke it would have taken an hour compared to Urban's 9 minutes....uh, uh, uh, uh ad nauseam.

Long live the southend.

osubuckeye4life's picture

The chase......has begun.....