Mike Thomas Has Thoughts on Ohio State's Receivers

By Ramzy Nasrallah on January 5, 2014 at 2:57p

Ohio State's receiving corps has been mediocre for several years now. This is not lost on redshirt WR Michael Thomas, who watched the Orange Bowl with the rest of us and saw Devin Smith accumulate five total yards on two receptions. 


Here are the screen caps from this feed, which Vegas has set the odds of being forcefully edited at 99%. People without Twitter: You start at the bottom and work your way up through the carnage:


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FormerBuck's picture

Well that's one more scholarship that will open up

Bj Mullens over Sully's picture

I disagree, kind of like it, he's not wrong, both Devin Smith and Evan Spencer didn't such much of anything towards the end of the year.  Now Thomas just needs to back it up.

Favorite Buckeye: Obviously BJ Mullens

FormerBuck's picture

I don't disagree with what he said, but twitter is not the place to say it.  Urban won't stand for it

Dr. House's picture

bring it next year fella 

DefendOhio's picture

I'm sure coach Mick will have something to say about this during off season workouts!

AngryWoody's picture

I don't get it..

Our Honor Defend!

Baroclinicity's picture

That's that douche Chicago White Sox announcer who, every time the Sox strike someone out, says "he gone!"

When you're holding a hammer, everything looks like a nail.

buck-I.8's picture

I keep it in the back pocket anytime it's even remotely relevant, which is probably not the case here.

Knarcisi's picture

Ken Harrell?
those guys are the worst ... " put em on the board !!!"

jhart's picture

Hawk Harrelson.
White Sox fans in Chicago worship that guy.  He's intolerable to listen too...and his booth mate Steve Stone is probably one of the most arrogant color guys in the business.  They can barely stand one another, which is somewhat entertaining.

Codeezy's picture

Hawk harrelson! A legend. 

TheBadOwl's picture

Said this in the other thread, but anybody who thinks Thomas should be released is delusional. 

  • Carlos Hyde had similar complains when he was behind Boom Herron and Jordan Hall. Look what he turned that frustration into.
  • Our passing game hasn't been good. That's obvious.
  • We have at least two spots opening up next year, and the other two should see a lot of competition as well (Smith's ineffectiveness, Spencer's injury)
  • By some accounts, Corey Smith was our best receiver in bowl practice, including Philly.
  • Mike Thomas is the reliable middle-threat that we're lacking. He's also a hell of a blocker. Perfect for what the coaches want to do.
  • A bit off-topic but something that jumped out to me: Christian Bryant is one hell of a leader and a great human being. His responses to Mike were all positive and basically telling him to do his talk on the field. Saying that it's Mike's time now.

Should he have said it publicly? Nah. Do I disagree with what he said? Nope.

When I walked in this morning and saw the flag was at half mast I thought, "Alright, another bureaucrat ate it." but then I saw it was Li'l Sebastian. Half mast is too high. Show some damn respect.

+2 HS
buckeyepastor's picture

Good point in reminding all that Hyde made similar comments a couple of years ago.   But keep in mind that Hyde worked his butt off to improve his game from that point forward.  Somehow I doubt that if Thomas had been consistently getting it done in practice as a blocker, route runner, pass catcher, etc., that they still elect to red-shirt him.  I hope he does step it up because physically the guy gives us the sort of presence at receiver we haven't had in a long time - the sort of big, fast target that takes over games (ala Watkins and Bryant).  
Thomas is right that Smith and Spencer did not get it done in the final two games.   Hell, they didn't get it done in the final four or five games.   I've been wondering for a while now about Zach Smith's future with OSU.  I appreciate that the guy is grandson of Earle Bruce and probably bleeds scarlet and gray as much as any coach we've ever had.  But with the output of our receivers, the way they seem to struggle so much with getting separation even two years into the program, the fact that apart from garbage time after two years there appears to be only 3 wide-outs (not including tight ends) that we trust out there on the field, it baffles me.   If Philly, Smith, and Spencer (and to a lesser degree Fields) are the only receivers who at the tail end of a season are really earning the playing time and able to make meaningful contributions to the offense, then why aren't the others getting coached up?  As a follow-up, if there are others that are proving themselves in practice, why aren't they getting opportunities on the field?  

"Woody would have wanted it that way" 

d5k's picture

Now we're questioning Zach Smith too?  Is Pantoni the next to get questioned?  We went from a clown show to at least some productivity in 2 years.  I think we are just waiting for the young guys to step up and beat out the older guys before we have multiple real playmakers at WR.  They hadn't done it by fall camp but possibly would have done it by the end of the year.  They didn't want to waste redshirts on a team that is like 10 spots short on scholarships.  Next year has to be that year.  We go from no depth to tons of depth next year at our "Need" positions.  LB, DB, WR.  O line goes from a strength to a question mark but I am hopeful we will become at least decent on O line if the ball gets out quicker to the playmakers and we use more misdirection in our offense without relying on a bell cow at RB.

Bolt's picture

Some excellent points taken, but I don't think Hyde's comments were quite as pointed toward his team and teammates. He basically just said, guess I'm not good enough to play here and maybe I should take my game elsewhere.
These comments are certainly not going to win him any points with his teammates in the receivers meeting room...almost all of which (including Spencer and Smith, who he's specifically pointing at with some of these) will be returning next year. I personally think it's a chickenshit thing to do for a guy that hasn't set foot on the field all year. Thomas hasn't been on the field to perform, so how do we really know how much of a reliable middle threat and great blocker je truly is? Because he performed well against half of our dumpster fire of a defense in a glorified spring scrimmage? There's a reason Thomas wasn't on the field over the guys ahead of him and the coaching staff has made that clear. If it's because he's not as good, that's a reason. If he's just behind in the knowledge of the game, that's a reason. If it's because he's not a good "team guy" (not saying he is or isn't, just giving reasons that could be) that Meyer prefers and he's found himself in the doghouse, that's another reason...and this certainly isn't going to help his cause if so. For one reason or another he's behind and hasn't been able to catch up. He can look at himself in the mirror for that instead of trying to crap on the efforts of the people that are actually out there on the field. One thing is for sure, he'd definitely better come and back up all this talking.

BenArazi4's picture

If it raises the level of the play of the WR and Thomas can back it up, then I'm all for it.  If he can show that he's a team player and not just running his mouth and take a leadership role, then I'm all for it but if he is just running his mouth like a primadonna then that's no bueno.




RufusVonDufus's picture

And if a prima dona he will be outed early so let him rant.     Maybe Urban will finally get his ass in gear to make some changes which he should have made in early October.


Kjetland's picture

He needs to concentrate on having another big spring game, followed by fading into obscurity. 

dan_isaacs's picture

Just FYI, he was redshirted this year.

Dan Isaacs

DaveBiddle's picture

Not a good look -- I bet Urban has a nice "talk" with young Mr. Thomas. Winter conditioning is not going to be fun for him.
PS: I agree with almost everything he's saying.

btalbert25's picture

I'm hoping winter conditioning isn't fun for any of them.  This played lacked Urban's Juice the last several weeks. They need to beat that into them this offseason. 

DefendYoungstown's picture

Maybe some of the coaches need a "winter conditioning" as well...

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

gobucks96's picture

I don't like to hear about it, but I'm glad that this discussion is happening. Facing the truth about your weaknesses is how you address them.... Now where's Eli's and Mike Mitchell's twitter accounts?

Alabama Buckeye's picture

What Thomas said was spot on but to tweet it all night makes him look like a total butthole. I sure wouldn't want him as a teammate. Does he think he's being a team first kinda guy by dogging his teammates on Twitter? Maybe that type of selfish "me first" attitude is encouraged where comes from but it has no place at THE Ohio State University.

bucknutfern4's picture

I have ZERO problems with what he said. Devin in particular was no where to be seen during these last 2 games. It is not like Michael is just being a hater. This dude needs to say this to get that fire going within his own position group. This also could be a good criticism to show Braxton to finally grow as a passer.

razrback16's picture

He shouldn't have posted that. Looks bad to have teammates having a war on twitter. That doesn't make him wrong, though.

LouGroza's picture

Going to be a long seven months.

Statutoryglory's picture

Competition breeds success.  If Mike wasn't forced into a redshirt he probably takes someone's job over the course of the season, at the very least replacing Fields in the rotation.

Chief B1G Dump's picture

I dont do twitter...what were Bryant's responses???

Kaceybrown's picture

Yeah I can't tell who said what, are the ones that have @cbryant2 (or what ever) at the beginning Bryant's posts?

Joe4's picture

Bryant's tweets aren't provided above, but you can read them by clicking here (even if you don't have a twitter account).  The ones above that begin "@2CBryant" are just ones where Thomas is responding to Bryant.  But like the poster above said, Bryant handled this in about the best way possible.  Wish he had another year!

Ethan's picture

I don't care how true those statements are, that's how locker rooms get divided. Be about the team and complain behind closed doors to the coaching staff. Not a fan of this behavior at all. That's prima donna material

ohst8buxCP's picture

I kinda like it, it shows some confidence and if it raises the level of play amongst the wr's then I'm ok with it. He's definitely not wrong but saying it on twitter is not a good look at all.

bucks15's picture

It's hard to argue with him, aside from Philly our receivers have been almost non-existent the past two games.  He has a reason to be frustrated.  
That said this is a very childish way to express these thoughts, especially saying this towards a senior captain.  I'm sure this won't help his cause in getting the playing time he is looking for, especially with all the young depth we have.  

CPDenn's picture

I'm kinda on board with Ramzy on this one. It'd be nice to have one of our receivers be an intimidator for once. A David Boston type. Granted, he has to show it on the field, but Urban's certainly had his fair share of players who like to talk and have that presence.  

Hovenaut's picture

This is about as disappointing as showing promise in a spring game, then not being able to show up in the regular season.

All kidding aside, there's nothing constructive about any of this.

idotter81's picture

^This.  Not a fan of spewing like this in public especially from someone who hasn't seen the field much at all other than in the Spring games.  I am pretty confident that the coaches would play him if they thought he was a better option. 

buckeyedude's picture

For all of the talk of the Buckeyes "having a chip on their shoulder" before the Orange Bowl, it only sounds like players like Thomas have a chip on their shoulders for having to sit on the sidelines and watch this team self-destruct. And he can't do anything about it.
It has to be 10X more frustrating for players like Thomas than it is for fans. Especially after watching true freshman start.



Nutinpa's picture

And for the newbies who were told...."Meyer doesn't red shirt" ?  Really?  Could've fooled me and the kids on the sidelines pulling splinters out of their rear ends.
While our WRs deserve some of the blame, so do the passing schemes.  How many intermediate routes were called for?  These guys seem to run "go" routes and not much of anything else for stretches of time.  I honestly don't know what the hell Herman and his peeps were thinking the last two games.  

d5k's picture

Herman has a fantastic understanding of the spread running game and how to use the passing game to open it up including play action and screens.  But our drop-back game on obvious passing situations is very lacking which falls on receivers, Braxton, and Herman.  In that order imo.  Braxton got much better at reading when to scramble against man coverage but he could still get even better at that.  And receivers need to run better routes and also learn that if 4 seconds have past then it is backyard football "get open" or throw a block time.  Philly is the only instinctive WR in that sense that was on the field this year.  Maybe the rest of the guys capable of those things are on the bench.

buck92's picture

Run with it. He speaks the truth. Now it is on him. I am with him. Again, Spencer and Smith should not be the starters if we want to have a competitive passing game next year. We have too much talent to have a slow (Spencer) and vanishing (Smith) receiving corps that would not start on any other Big 10 team. And, if they wouldnt start on any other Big 10 team they certainly would not start anywhere else. I just hope we dont have some misguided loyalty to these guys because they are seniors. This is why we dont recruit elite receivers well. They see zero production. Keep in mind what Jefferson's Dad is saying to his son. He like OSU but wants to see us use our receivers much more effectively. Yes, some may be scheme but we need gamebreakers.


buckeyedude's picture

Hate to be that guy, but it helps to have a QB that can pass the ball to his receivers effectively.



Buckeyevstheworld's picture

It also helps when WRs catch the ball when it's in their hands.

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

DefendYoungstown's picture

So what your both saying is that we're lacking in 2 areas, QB and WR...

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

d5k's picture

It's more appropriate to say we are lacking in a drop-back passing game.  We have a fantastic play action game and QB running threat opening up a tremendous rushing attack.  But on 3rd and 10 if they blitz our only answer seemed to be "Braxton make 2 guys miss and find Philly Brown or run for a 1st down".  I don't like the phrase "lacking in QB" when Braxton does so many other things at an ultra-elite level.  He needs to throw with touch at times and throw guys open into zone especially.  But we really need instinctive route running WRs or just better athletes who have a nose for the ball.  Think Mike Evans going up and getting it when the play breaks down.  While we are obviously going to have a downgrade at between the tackles running, having a more legit checkdown RB going into the flat/middle should help on 3rd down as well.
Btw, the reason Devin Smith fell off a cliff is teams figured out how to take away the deep passing game while still devoting an extra run defender.  Devin Smith is a pretty good 1st and 10 receiver in this offense because of what he can open up for other guys in play action and blocking but I feel like he should be off the field on 3rd down.

Patriot4098's picture

B1G WR units aren't too shabby, actually. There are better ones out there, but we hold our own in that department. Its QB play that has been the difference.

"Evil shenanigans!"     - Mac

teddyballgame's picture

I think the larger point here is that our passing game is whack.  Braxton and the entire receiving corps underperformed and MUST get better.

BlazeTheBuckeye's picture

I'm so glad he spoke up Devin Smith performance the last couple games was awful this is what the competitive Urban Meyer environment is suppose to be about enough of this nice guy stuff 

Hardly home but always reppin

FROMTHE18's picture

hes not wrong. The starting WRs we have a adequate but they arent awesome. Philly was useful at times with the ball in his hands and he did a nice job going up and getting passes, Smith is a deep threat but does he get passed to that much during shorter routes?, Spencer drops balls. With that said, Mike wasnt that great when he got his passes last year. He has a ton of work to do to be worth starting. I think the younger guys have more potential. No idea what to expect from the WRs next year but right now Im skeptical they are going to really be that impressive. 

MilitaryBuckeye's picture

Hate the fact that he's airing the team's dirty laundry on social media... But I find myself agreeing with most of what he had to say.
Hope he takes that anger and turns it to a 1000+ yard receiving 20+ TD catching season!
On a side note, him being the nephew of Keyshawn Johnson, This should surprise no one! We should've expected that kinda vocality from the young man...

bergy22's picture

Twitter maybe isn't the best place but he is 100% correct. We need receivers that attack the ball. Devin smith has not done that, you won't succeed by only running streak patterns and hoping to out run everyone. Too much of a one trick pony. Urban has recruited some talent behind these guys. Room for improvement everywhere! Go Bucks

Mute's picture

Our receivers are terrible and uncreative at running routes, and combined with the fact that Miller is just simply not accurate you get OSU's crappy pass offense the last 2-3 years
Either Miller gets sacked because none of the receivers are capable of getting even an inch of separation (see: MSU game) or Miller just misses

Jack Burton's picture

Can't say that I disagree. One thing is certain, the WR competition just got REAL.

It's all in the reflexes - Me

st pete bch buckeye's picture

If he is going to run his mouth he better back it up.  I like it if he backs it up.
I do like these young guns stepping up and being a voice for change just better back that shit talk up.

rosycheeks's picture

Not everything that's true needs to be stated.

allbucksallthetime's picture

I agree.  Everyone loves to hear and read the truth until it is THEIR truth that is being flown in the public laundry.  I completely disagree with the tactic and do believe there are a couple of ways to properly voice an opinion.  The first and, most obvious, is to play better.  I hope Michael Thomas is up to his own challenge.  Go Bucks!

aabuckeye's picture

"Remember not only to say the right thing in the right place, but far more difficult still, to leave unsaid the wrong thing at the tempting moment." -- Benjamin Franklin

idotter81's picture

And another from the wise man,"I have often regretted my speech but never my silence." --  Benjamin Franklin. 

GingerJaw's picture

Is it just me, or the last 2 years the routes the WR run have been awful? It's either a WR screen or everyone just runs a go route? It seems like there are very few intermediate slants, outs, or mid routes. Here's hoping for a Troy Smith-esque growth from Jr. year to Sr. year passing wise for Braxton 

cplunk's picture

I'm with you. We never seem to throw quick slants or short TE hooks. All our routes are bubble screens, deep posts, or flys. No intermediate passing at all. 

cplunk's picture

We also never throw RB screens. Never. No idea why. Great way to offset the kind of aggressive rush Clemson was running. A screen to Dontre or Carlos would have gone for big yards.

d5k's picture

You only have so much practice time.  But I hope this becomes part of our game plan next year with multiple backs whose best skill is their versatility.  I would like to see a charting statistic of how we performed vs. the blitz on 3rd and long.  I would guess it is miserable with the only positive plays mostly being Braxton scrambling.

BuckeyeStrong2's picture

Maybe this is due to the coaching staff not confident in Braxton's short to intermediate accuracy?


Buckeye1996's picture

I hate this stuff. Why go to twitter to call people out? Respect is gained through action and not words. Social media is not the place to gain respect. Facts or no facts. This is BS masked behind the cloak of a self proclaimed realist.

Alabama Buckeye's picture

Finally, someone who makes some sense! It seems like half the posts on here are written by teenagers having no comprehension that bad mouthing your teammates on twitter is never acceptable and shows a total lack of maturity.

ohhiyo's picture

Conspiracy theorist: Urban wanted to lose that game so Mike Thomas would complain on twitter then release him.

The Vest-er's picture

Yeah, but when did Tressel know about it?

Fundamentals are a crutch for the talentless.

DefendYoungstown's picture

Tressel knew that the punter was going to have the game of his life

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

Jbucks's picture

though im not a fan of how he handled it on Twitter, but I am a fan of his & have been since he tore it up in the spring game his freshman year, & think he needs to be used in this offense!! anyone know if he redshirted?

Light shines in the darkness and the darkness has not overcome it-John 1:5 SEC meet Ohio State, Ohio State meet SEC

BuckeyeChief's picture

SMDH,  the more I think about it...I remember about 7 years ago, as an LPO, I had a 2nd Class who disagreed with something I did...he decided he was going to talk to me VIA E-MAIL WHILE WE WERE OUT TO SEA! Needles to say, it didn't go over well. He learned a lesson, I lost a ton of respect for him.
While I can agree with something of the things he said, SOCIAL MEDIA IS NOT THE WAY TO EXPRESS IT.  MAN UP!

"2014 National Champions...deal with it!!!"

Patriot4098's picture

Was he respectful?

"Evil shenanigans!"     - Mac

Patriot4098's picture

The twitterverse probably isn't the place to do this. BUT if you listen to UFM, you'll hear him speak about what a 'starter' at Ohio State looks like. I got the impression he was calling out his position group as a whole. They gotta' step up and play like a starting WR core for THE Ohio State University, and I don't know that they did that too consistently this year.

"Evil shenanigans!"     - Mac

SOF_Buckeye's picture

I'm with the crowd that thinks if you want to speak up and get loud about how you feel, do it in the locker room in front of the team/teammates; which will still tick off a bunch of them, but get the point across, without coming off like a whiner. 
Also, if you're going to complain about the lack of productivity of the other receivers, you better make sure you mention the one whose job it is to get them the ball, that is just as much of an issue. It doesn't matter how many great receivers you have if nobody can get the ball to them.

"The harder you work, the harder it is to surrender." Woody Hayes

d5k's picture

I would like to see all-22 film to really know.  I have a feeling Philly is really the only guy who ever got open on non-constraint plays.  It's a lot easier to get open on first and 10 play action.

iamcbs's picture

There's never anything wrong with speaking truth to power. I'm sure Mike Thomas is only expressing what other players at many positions are feeling. Going undefeated covered up a lot of ills with this team. Now maybe the real work can begin. Mike Thomas has to back up the big talk, if he doesn't he'll be just another underachieving whiner. The spotlight just got a lot brighter for @cantguardmike, he'd better be able to live up to his Twitter Handle!!

I am not afraid of an army of lions led by a sheep, I am afraid of an army of sheep led by a lion~Alexander the Great

CC's picture

There's never anything wrong with speaking truth to power.

Try that with your boss, your wife, or your commander in the military. I have a feeling you would change your tune.

HighBallAce's picture

Isn't he Keyshawn Johnson's nephew? Cause that sounds like Keyshawn talking to me..

luckynutz's picture

Was about to say the exact same thing...this must be something that runs in the family. While I underatand his frustration, there ar better avenues to address these complaints than out in the public eye. We have already seen enough hate spewed by our fans towards certain players on twitter. Now we have players attacking teammates? You'd think this team just ran off the worst season in school history.

Here's what you need to do mike...kill it in conditioning, kill it in spring practice and kill it in fall camp. Dont give them any reason but to let you out there. This isn't the way to do it. Show them you have what it takes to be out there and that you have the drive and desire to get it done. That's what they are looking for...guys who want it. Show them you're that guy.

Buckeye_in_SEC_country's picture

Michael Thomas ever think it might be on Herman and Braxton too?  Chad Morris made Herman look like a middle school coach during the Orange Bowl and Braxton still continues to struggle to read defenses and make progressions.  I understand the WR's have to get open, but I don't think it's all on the WR's.  There's a reason why Braxton isn't going to the NFL, he obviously isn't ready and needs to improve.  When he has a 65% completion percentage and averages 200 yards passing per game then he will be ready.  Until then, I think Braxton needs to be a WR or RB in the NFL.

mclovin's picture

Agreed. It's weird that the passing game can breakdown for a lot of different reasons, and probably the most unlikely of those is what people tend to believe. Do we have great receivers?  Not especially. But they were all big time recruits, they are all fast (some actual track stars), and they have all gone through two years of coaching from a coach we all have a lot of faith in. And yet people still believe that our passing woes are on the WRs.   On most pass plays we have 3 - 5 guys running routes. You can believe on the one hand that all 3 - 5 receivers are not able to run a route where sufficient space is created between the receiver and the defender for a pass to be completed.  And remember also what many football experts say: covering a receiver is the hardest thing to do in football because the QB and receivers have already preplanned the route. And on the other hand you have the possibility that the QB is not able to effectively read the defenses quick enough or to deliver the football into the Windows created.  

Indy_Buck87's picture

It is not shit talking if you can back it up.  CB was right do it on the field not on a twitter account. 

I know of only two things that are infinite, space and human stupidity.....and I'm not sure about space". Albert Einstein.

dxm0161's picture

everything Mike Thomas has said is 100 percent accurate. Devin Smith and Evan Spencer need to be special teams only. Coach meyer better play Mike Thomas, ,greene, clark, dixon, samuel, etc
etc... he (meyer) needs to make an executive decision.

The same could be said about the defensive line. Urbam must override
decision to play the same four on the defensive line. marcus has to play
next year. he is arguably the best pass rusher on the team.
Coach has got to step in. We have to start playing the most talented players vs the most veteran players

david mcgovern

-1 HS
luckynutz's picture

What d lineman do you sit down then? Noah spence? The guy who led the team in sacks? Joey bosa? Who was an absolute beast as a TRUE freshman? Marcus plays situationally...and will get his chance to earn more time the first two weeks with spence suspended. The d line runs on a rotation...they rarely play the same 4 guys every play. They rotate through spence, washington, hale, bennett, bosa, marcus, schutt, steve miller and before he got hurt michael hill was in the rotation. Then you are adding in thompson and jalyn holmes next year. Add the potential of nabbing one of solomon thomas or malik mcdowell and thats a stacked rotation. Pretty sure thats not something meyer needs to or wants to mess with.

As far as the recievers...there is a plethora of talent in that position group. But here's the thing...meyer loves for his receivers to be able to block in the run game. And philly, spencer, smith and fields wrre all excellent blockers this year. Thats why they played...the key to getting in at receiver is a conce red effort to become a better blocker. Not to mention they tightened the reigns on millrr as the season wote down...they just werent throwing the ball as much. And when they did, it was mostly swing passes or bubble screens. Which again require solid blocking. Fact is herman shut down the playbook to end the season...miller has been banged up and erratic the last few games. And hyde was beasty...plain and simple. I wouldnt call spencer and smith world beaters at wr, but there's a reason they played.

dxm0161's picture

lucky you have great points. But vrabel made a decision not to rotate defensive lineman.
when you have extremely talented wide receiver personnel than your play calling changes that's all I was saying.

david mcgovern

luckynutz's picture

Well, injuries to schutt and hill kind of threw things out of whack. They were planning on schutt working in with hale and bennett, with washington rotating down on passing downs. And washington spent the better part of the season dealing with injury as well. With spence being suspended, and bosa gutting through the ankle injury, steve miller and marcus saw substantial time friday night. Guys had to play more minuyes because of the shortage of bodies. Not to mention they moved billy price to the o line due to septh concerns. Same with chase farris. And chris carter can't get his weight under control. I agree that marcus showed he is worthy of more playing time. The main issue is there is so much talent up front its hard to get more minutes. And the talent is all young. He will see his time no doubt...vrabel has done a remarkable job with that unit. And they will only get better.

Bucks777's picture

I believe something like this would work.
On 1 down and 10:  Noah, Bennett, Washington, Bosa
On 3rd down and more than 5 yards to go for a first:  Noah, Bennett, Bosa, Marcus
(this allows more pressure on the QB from 3 very good pass rushers on an obvious passing down.)
I would also rotate in on 2nd downs:     Miller, Hale, Shutt, & Holmes
  ( *these guys need to get playing time and will not hurt us when they are in the game.
This would give players the needed playing time and you could rotate different variations of the above on 2nd downs, depending on 2nd down and short or long.
I would do the same at LB: On passing downs I would have:
Johnson, Raekwon, Perry/ Booker 
  On running downs I would have: Perry, Grant, Tyquan Lewis  (Raekwon,Johnson,Mitchell)
As the season progress' I believe:  Holmes, Marcus, Spence, and Bosa are all standouts at getting to the QB.  The rest are run stoppers which can handle plugging the middle. I believe  Steve Miller is in one of those places where if he gains strength in the off season and loses 10 pounds he is a legitimate threat/force off the edge!
Defensive Backs:
CB: Eli Apple, Tyvis Powell, Doran Grant, Reeves, Webb.  & Safety: Bell.

sivaDavis's picture

So what happens when the other team runs on passing downs, and passes on running downs. You can't also just assume a team will do something and put a certain personel group out there to counter it. Mind games is the beauty of football. You have your best players in most of your base packages and then switch it up accordingly. What you're suggesting is a complete overhaul almost every other down. Can't work. Let the young defense get caught out there against an up-tempo team and watch the defense get shredded. Naah. No thanks. I trust Urban will have a little bit more say in the defense after watching his defense be the laughing stock of the NCAA the last 3 games.

"I've had smarter people around me all my life, but I haven't run into one yet that can outwork me. And if they can't outwork you, then smarts aren't going to do them much good." - Woody Hayes

OSU069's picture

He's correct. However twitter is not the place to say it.

Poison nuts's picture

Not sure I disagree with his thoughts, but I do disagree with the forum in which he choose to do his thinking. Telling the world your teammates aren't very good, particularly in CFB, is a bad idea. That said, I don't want to see him gone or anything, I'd just like to see an improved passing game next year. That goes for WR play as well as QB play. 

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

WOLFofOHIO's picture

terry mclaurin. curtis samuel. johnnie dixon. parris campbell. Trust me mike..you will have competition next year and the wr core looks great..

there is no greater joy than watching Michigan get slammed. in anything

Brandon26841's picture

So I guess this comes down to him feeling like he should be out there playing over the current starters?
Eh. If he was good enough to be out there playing, he would be. You're just not better than the guys ahead of you, man. Your time may come though, but it might not. It's up to you.

bull1214's picture

i dont really speak twitterese so im not really sure what he was saying but it didnt sound good for team chemistry thats for sure.

chitown buckeye's picture

Calling for players to step up from a player who couldn't step up in practice?? It only works if the player calling out other players is producing himself. This comes off as sour grapes and bad all around. Work harder get ur ass on the field and produce, then worry what others are doing.

"I'm having a heart attack!"

Knarcisi's picture

Sounds like sour grapes against the starters he couldn't beat out. 

dxm0161's picture

lucky nutz has some good points but they do not rotate the defensive lineman like lucky suggests. they made a decision and it was vrabels decision not to rotate the defensive lineman. if the personnel is there at wide receiver than the playcalling changes...

david mcgovern

dxm0161's picture

trust me on this

david mcgovern

Joe4's picture

So what is Thomas's ceiling?  Do people expect much from him?  Will he play above guys like Curtis Samuel or Noah Brown or Jalin Marshall?

idotter81's picture

That will be up to him, I am guessing.  If he hasn't gotten on the field with the current WR competition, I am wondering what his PT will look like next year with all that young talent coming up behind him (redshirts and frosh).

Knarcisi's picture

I always see him chirping in Braxton's ear on the sideline and after the game. Seems like a punk. 

HotSauceCommittee's picture

The opposite, him and Braxton are buddies.

Knarcisi's picture

I know they are buddies. He is chirping and Braxton doesn't look at him and somewhat ignores him. Just body language. Seems like he's talking shit. 

bucknut94's picture

The truth will set you free.

theshoe's picture

I think Mike deleted all these tweets.  I can't find them anymore 

jamesrbrown322's picture

I'll say this, no matter your walk of life or profession, you never, NEVER do this to your teammates in public. I have no problem with the content, just manner in which it was communicated.
Man up and say it to their face upon their return, nothing wrong with that. Just don't take to Twitter to say that about your teammates. At some point, you line up together and go to battle against others.

"Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts." - Winston Churchill

harleymanjax's picture

While I think we all agree with what he said, he has no right to say it till he can prove himself on the field, and he definitely should not say this on twitter!
Urban has to be pissed right now!

"Because I couldn't go for 3"

ShawneeBuck74's picture

I would agree that criticizing one's teammates in public is not good. The first few tweets that I saw, I thought Mike was criticizing the coaches "stubbornness" to do anything to rectify the problems we all saw in the passing game.  That would include scheme and possibly personnel.
I thought he was going after Hermann a little bit, which wihile not wise is not as bad as going after a teammate. 
In essence, I thought he was doing what Braxton's been doing (they are good friends) - Brax has criticized Hermann's playcalling/stubbornness.  "I'm tired of taking a beating" & "We have talented running backs here too." 
Upon seeing all the tweets, he may have been doing that - but he also expressed frustration at being behind Spencer & Smith. That's not a helpful team attitude. I do think he's accurate in criticizing the passing game - but at this point, who's to say that's Spence or Smith's fault?  Our passing game became "wide receiver in the flats" or "everybody go deep."  I saw precious few slants or curls or crossing routes.  And Brax does need to get better at getting rid of the ball, throwing receivers open.  

You win with people. 

9 Units Strong. 


ChazBuckeye's picture

I agree with his points except the part about putting it on social media for his teammates and coaches to see.  I agree because I said the same thing on the starting wr thread.  I was worried about getting bombarded with negativity because I was critical of automatically putting Smith and Spencer right back into starting roles.  I just don't think that's what's going to make this offense better.  Sure they can block the perimeter, but we need a vertical offense or OSU will NEVER beat the fast athletic teams.  Bottom line is, Mike's right!

Some people think we’re the hunted.I don’t feel that way at all.We’re the hunter.Everybody wants an angry football team.Everybody wants a team on edge and a hungry team.If you’re a hunter,that usually equates to being hungry.

J.Mo's picture

If Mike Thomas steps it up not only in the spring but also in fall camp and he's out performing Evan & Devin, well he should get one of their spots. Evan might not have the stat line that shows it but he's the best blocking WR we have and it's a shame that doesn't show up on the stat line.

Buckeyejason's picture

Maybe if we had a QB that could throw the ball more efficiently and actually threw the ball downfield instead of running the same play 30 times a game we might actually see Devin Smiths and Evan Spencer's talent. #enoughzonereadthrowthedamnball
Oh, and Mike Thomas will never play at Ohio State.


ChazBuckeye's picture

I have to say I agree with this.  Braxton can't read fast enough to make tight throws for these guys to show their talents.  And it probably won't matter if Mike is out there or Jerry Rice.  If he can't see them and get rid of it on time, well it won't matter who is playing wr.  
Another good point was they need to get vertical.  The zone read would work SO much better if OSU could get more than 25 receptions in a game.  I don't think that happened all year with the exception of Kenny G against horrible teams.  

Some people think we’re the hunted.I don’t feel that way at all.We’re the hunter.Everybody wants an angry football team.Everybody wants a team on edge and a hungry team.If you’re a hunter,that usually equates to being hungry.

d5k's picture

The game plan is 60-40 run because Urban abhors being behind schedule.  Once teams started to game plan against our screen game and because we still didn't really have game breakers after the catch in the short passing game, we went away from it.  We had some nice stuff with Dontre on friday which was a positive sign (jet sweep motion away from the base running play and play action off of it).  The most lacking aspect though is still drop back passing on obvious passing downs.  We don't have release valves for Braxton against blitzes, so he errs on the side of trying to buy time in the pocket.  Need to do a lot of self scouting and have more answers for what the defenses did to us in the last 3 games.   All of that said we put up 35 against a good defense on friday so while we have areas to improve upon we are still an elite offensive team.

dan_isaacs's picture

Yeah, Braxton's best friend, and the kid that dominated the last two Spring games, will never play.  The 6'3" guy that doesn't drop anything, he's not going to play.  Whatever.

Dan Isaacs

ChazBuckeye's picture

If he changes his attitude he'll play. Until that happens, I agree with JB...he won't be playing. Kind of like a guy named TY-rone Williams...lol. What a waste of 6-6 230 pound wr from Cleveland.

Some people think we’re the hunted.I don’t feel that way at all.We’re the hunter.Everybody wants an angry football team.Everybody wants a team on edge and a hungry team.If you’re a hunter,that usually equates to being hungry.

SC Buckeye's picture

Just because it's your right to say what you think, doesn't mean you're right to say what you think.
IMO, you don't air your dirty laundry on social media.  You wouldn't stand on your porch and scream to everyone your family's business; don't do it to your teammates.

pcuzz1's picture

That's a great job by bryant. Showed leleadership. Defused the siutation and tried to calm mike down.

pat cozzens

Buckeyejason's picture

Seriously! who slams his teammates like this for all the public to see!?!! And a freshman who hasn't done SHIT at that!? As a wise man once told me.."keep your mouth shut, be humble and work your ass off".


Knarcisi's picture

+1 to help with that DV. Pisses me off, too, and should more people on here. 

UABuckeye's picture

Has Darquez Dennard released D.Smith from captivity yet? 

Follow me @jaythesportsguy

LeftCoastBuck's picture

Totally disagree with most of the comments here. He is not a fan, he is a player and has obligations to his teammates and the coaching staff. He needs a gallon or two of STFU and another gallon of GTFU with a huge helping of Humble Pie.
This guy is worse than friggin TO and no one disputes what a locker room cancer he was/is
I am thinking he is a total asshat if I am one of his teammates. If I'm Urban, he gets a simple choice.....all in or don't let the door hit you in the ass on the way out.

"Have a Coke and a smile!.....along with $150 in UM football tickets"

Buckeyevstheworld's picture

and no one disputes what a locker room cancer


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

CC's picture

TO wasn't a cancer? I lived in Philly and would beg to differ.

Buckeyevstheworld's picture

Philly has had so much success since his depature. Same with Dallas.

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

LeftCoastBuck's picture

TO is still sitting at home, waiting for the call from an owner that will never come.
closest he'll ever get is hearing Al Davis' voice in his head

"Have a Coke and a smile!.....along with $150 in UM football tickets"

Buckeyevstheworld's picture

He's 40. It's not like he's 33 in his prime.

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

poop's picture

I feel like Mike should have let his play do the talking. If he's better than Devin or Evan then it would show in practice. I agree that they are pretty pedestrian receivers but I don't see him on the field except for spring game. Braxton is pretty limited from what I've seen this season so he shares some of the blame. Mike better step up this season or he'll look like an ass.

Knarcisi's picture

No shit, poop. 

Brutus's picture

Pun...intended? If so, well done.

ScarletGray43157's picture

Passing game involves the QB reading his progressions and making good decisions, receivers running good routes, and O-line giving the QB time, plus other details that all have to come together to make it happen.  
These things did not come together optimally, especially down the stretch of the 2013 season.  
To put it all on the shoulders of the receivers is not accurate.  
The public nature of this is a separate issue.  This is something that I would want to be kept in-house if it was my team.  Nobody has to agree with me, but I will hold fast to that opinion.  What to do after the twit hits the fan?  I don't know, but something has to be done to address it, and I would keep that in-house too, even though this went public.  

In old Ohio there's a team that's known throughout the land...

Murph32's picture

Lol at the Vonn Bell tweet 

YellowBelly's picture

Preach Mike!

hey hey hey

Buckifan4Life's picture

He's 1000% right! Receivers have to work to get open when their QB is struggling to find openings. Mike has to back it up with more hard work and I think he will. No matter where you are, there are politics and even though the coaching staff may not like his Twitter feed on this issue, his passion tells them a lot. He doesn't need to make friends. When he makes plays, the friends will come in droves.
I'm behind you 1000%.  Show 'em what's up!

irishfury's picture

I agree with him.  Urban Meyer has made it his mission to get better at WR its a shame that he redshirted so much talent.
This should be kept behind closed doors though.
You don't bring in.
D.Wilson, J.Marshall, T.Lauren, J.Clark, J.Dixon, C.Samuel, P.Cambell if you think a group is solid.  I hate to say it but it kills me he went with the older guys and I think we handicapped ourselves doing the Braxton and Hyde show.  I mean thats good enough to beat 95% of the teams we play.  The other 5% we need to open the playbook.  Look at Clemson it was the Sammy Watkins screen show.  Why we don't do the same thing with D.Wilson is beyond me.  I love Hyde and what he brought but I'm almost glad he will be gone so we can open up the playbook and get the playmakers involved.

mtgerken's picture

Its not really a twitter fight, if he's stating facts. In fact I enjoyed reading those because I didn't realize how bad it truly was! A lot of Brax getting hit was him having to wait WAYYYYY to much time for just one receiver to get open!

"Because I couldn't go for three!"


chemicalwaste's picture

Sounds to me like he needs to worry less about y'all doin y'all homework and hit the books himself. Jesus. I understand its twitter but I found that difficult to read and disappointing at the same time. Im pretty sure that if Urban thought Mike Thomas gave them a better shot now he would have been out there. Tweeting didnt work out well for Carlos, nor did it work for LaQuinton Ross. All they did was ride the pine after publicly crapping on teammates.

teddyballgame's picture

If he said this DURING the season it would have been really foul.  I'm OK with it at this point. 

mtgerken's picture

You just have to agree with the guy! In that he has an opinion higher then our as he is on the team. Just because he's on the team doesn't mean that he can say facts good or bad about the team. Its blatantly obvious to everyone in the country that aside for Philly (who is gone) our receivers haven't produced anything, and that really hurt Braxton's development as a passer. Brax is a much better passer then some realize, I mean just count how many times he stood tall in the pocket and waited and scrambled for an open receiver. Thats on the WR. Your telling me that that for 5-8 seconds we couldn't get a single receiver in the least bit open? Thats bad.... Coming from a teammate or not you gotta realize how bad that is!

"Because I couldn't go for three!"