After the hipster frames, Jim Tressel's next step to embrace 'Indy rock'.
The Big Ten Conference has made their choice. Beginning following the conclusion of the 2011 regular season, the storied conference will play their first ever championship game in the comfortable confines of state-of-the-art Lucas Oil Stadium.
Through a University spokesperson, The Vest chimed in on the historic decision:
“Indianapolis is the capital city of college athletics. It will be an honor to aspire to compete in Lucas Oil Stadium.”
The strange saga of freshman RB Rod Smith rolled on Thursday as he no showed for camp. After facing much scrutiny due to admissions/academics related issues, the good news appears to be that Smith's non-arrival was something of a logistics woe: he didn't have a ride to Columbus. Per all accounts, Smith is working to rectify the situation and should be with the team shortly.
Perhaps more surprising to some was word that tight end Nic DiLillo was absent from the team's 105-man roster. Given that this is a pretty non-exclusive catch all roster for all essential (and even some non-) personnel, it's a bit of a shocker that someone once expected to contribute on the field falls behind walk on's and the like. The Dispatch's venerable Ken Gordon had more on the reasoning behind the move:
Interesting on DiLillo, it's rare to leave a scholarship player off the 105. DiLillo may rejoin later, but it's a clear msg to him.
Rumors abound that DiLillo's not brought the same level of effort and intensity to his on-the-practice field hustle as he has with his, ahem, off-the-field extracurriculars. More on both as it becomes available.
(TFJ: Ken Gordon)
Change, whether we like it or not, is coming to the Big Ten Conference. Jim Delany announced earlier this week that in the next 120 days (and maybe way sooner) the conference will look to finalize divisional alignments and select a location for the first ever Big Ten Championship Game. While the actual alignments and location are the subject of debate for all 12 of the teams that will play in the conference next year, only two teams can quarrel about history being changed.
Those two teams are Ohio State and Michigan, who take part in the greatest rivalry in the sport each and every year. Historically, "The Game" usually serves as the deciding factor in terms of who will take the conference crown, who will earn a trip to the Rose Bowl, and sometimes, who will either get a chance to play for the crystal.
"The Game" has been the season finale for both teams since 1935, and that is about to change. The Big Ten Championship will be held a week after this gridiron classic and will forever change the impact that the rivalry has on the conference in one way or another. Until we know the divisional alignments, and even then, the impact the game will now have on the conference will not be cut and dry, but what we can speculate is the different effects certain alignment options will have on the rivalry.
Rob Oller did a great job yesterday of breaking down the various options for "The Game" in the new-look Big Ten, but today we'll take a shot of putting forth our own analysis of the possible scenarios the rivalry will take on in the coming years. We'll look at the pros of each option, the cons of each option, and finally give you our pick for which situation we feel is best to keep the tradition and history alive in the Ohio State-Michigan Rivalry.
OPTION 1: Same Division and Play the Last Game of the Year
Pros: Just like in past years, the game remains the last regular season game, giving both teams a chance to find themselves throughout the season and bring their best football to the table. The game will still have a large impact on the conference as it will have a good chance of annually deciding the Big Ten East (or whatever they will call it) winner and send one of the two teams on o the league championship game.
Cons: The game will no longer be the season finale and won't outright decide who the conference champion is right then and there. After beating each other up on the field, the winner will have to come out again the next week and play a solid Nebraska, Wisconsin, or Iowa team for the conference title. After giving it their all, emotionally and physically, on Thanksgiving weekend, will the winer have enough in the tank to avoid a championship game upset?
OPTION 2: Same Division, but Play the Game in the Middle of the Year
Pros: Texas and Oklahoma are in this model and it seems to work out OK for them. A loss in this game allows either team to rebound and come back to win the conference, and possibly even salvage MNC hopes.
Cons: This model takes away from the importance of the rivalry, as the unknown of the effects of the result diminishes the stakes at hand. The fact that a team can lose this game and still make the championship or win the conference is a bit bothersome and the place of this rivalry being the greatest in sports history will slowly fade away. Look at the rivalry games played mid-season compared to the rivalry games played at the end of the season. Which ones are on that pedestal of great rivalries in your eyes?
OPTION 3: Different divisions, but Play Annually, Anyway
Pros: The game would be played yearly and would still have an effect on conference record, thus still possibly determining the participants of the championship game. The possibility is also there for the teams to play again in the championship game, as winners of each of the two divisions. This can be both good and bad (more to come in the Cons section), but it would be really cool to see these two teams go at it twice in one season and the 2011 Buckeyes could be the first team to earn two sets of gold pants in one year.
Cons: The potential to play twice in one season takes away some the importance of the regular season game between the two. While one or both of the teams may be in a must-win situation in the regular season classic to earn a spot in the championship game, the chances are also there that the division winners already clinched a spot in the finale. Another problem with this scenario is the unfairness of a possible championship game re-match. If OSU beat Michigan in Ann Arbor and then a week later lost to them on neutral turf, is that fair to the Buckeyes that Michigan gets to go to the Rose Bowl? I certainly don't think so and neither does the BCS committee, thus the reason they chose Florida to play the Buckeyes in the MNC a few years back.
What's the Right Call?
If it were up to us (and Delany said he'd call us), we would somehow find a way to kill off divisions and let OSU and Michigan determine the conference championship every year. That just isn't feasible and if we have to choose one of the options, we might as well pick the lesser of three evils. The first option allows for the game to remain the regular season finale, sets up the best chance for this game to determine the winner of the division, and is the best choice to retain as much of the history and tradition of the rivalry as possible. Further, we'd avoid the awkward situation where the teams could potentially meet twice to end the season. If we had to guess today, this is the way the Big Ten will go, with Option 2 taking away the importance of "The Game" and Option 3 potentially causing a ton of controversy.
This is the third and final installment in a series that is threatening to live up to its own name. I had no intention of continuing to beat this drum but the enthusiastic reaction to the firsttwo posts in the series combined with the numerous pet peeves that surface in my mind during the course of a typical season have inspired me to lay out one more category of frequent disdain: team mascots.
I was watching television with my wife the other day and on the screen flashed before us the image that you see to the right. She asked me what it was and I answered that it was the mascot of the Miami Hurricanes. Then she asked the question that should be asked by anyone who plays for or supports "the U": what does a duck have to do with Hurricanes? Since I did not know the answer, I did some research and found that the mascot is supposed to be an Ibis. The Ibis is (according to folklore) the last animal to flee from an approaching hurricane and the first to reappear after it passes. The official name of the mascot is "Sebastion the Ibis", but he sure looks like a duck to me. I guess the snarling bill of a duck is more imposing than the downward-pointing bill of an Ibis.
In any case, having lived through the Jimmy Johnson years and all of the hype surrounding the 2002 Miami team, I've pretty much had my fill of old Sebastion. But maybe there's a mascot that gets on your nerves even more? I'm going to suggest a few candidates below and organize them into three different mascot categories. Hopefully, I'll cover the one that suits your annoyance the most, but if not then please share your disdain in the comments.
DRESSED UP HUMAN MASCOTS
Notre Dame probably leads the pack in this category. Their Leprechaun mascot is the epitome of impotent posturing, considering what their teams have accomplished on the field of late. But with the hiring of Brian Kelly and the prospect that ND might once again rise to prominence, it is likely that the Leprechaun will be strutting with a little more pride than he has in the past few seasons. Still, I can't help but chuckle when I see this suggestion for a new mascot (obviously a jab at former coach Weis but hilarious nonetheless).
I've always thought Florida State mascot Chief Osceola was pretty cool, with his war paint and flaming spear. The fact that he has successfully fought off the NCAA's ban on "hostile and abusive" mascots (hello Illinois fans!) is also a plus. But that's only because the program has been humbled by scandal and lack of football success in the past few seasons. As with Notre Dame, if the coaching change (Bowden out, Fisher in) brings the 'Noles back to the top of the college ranks, then the Chief might start to really irritate.
The horse, not the man.
LIVE ANIMAL MASCOTS
There are many of these, but the one that annoys me the most is USC's "Traveler". Apparently it's only the horse that is considered an official mascot, although the rider (sometimes erroneously referred to as "Tommy Trojan") is more indicative of the "Trojan" label. Traveler might be humbled a bit this season, considering the NCAA sanctions and what not. But I don't think it will make him any less irritating in the long run.
Another one that sometimes rankles me is "Uga", the English Bulldog that serves as the mascot for the University of Georgia. Besides the silly name, the fact that the death of one of these pooches makes for a "serious" news story in Atlanta's biggest paper tells you all about priorities down yonder in Athens. Another live animal mascot that sometimes irritates is "Ralphie", the live Buffalo used by the University of Colorado to lead their team onto the field at the beginning of the game and the beginning of the second half. Like Uga has "Hairy Dawg", Ralphie has a costumed-human equivalent, but besides getting love from the Capital One Mascot Challenge, "Chip" doesn't get much camera time compared to Ralphie.
Where do we start in this category? They say that familiarity breeds contempt, and some of the most familiar costumed mascots to Buckeye fans are the ones representing Big Ten rivals like Wisconsin, Michigan State, and Purdue. While these all have their moments, the one that probably annoys Ohio State fans the most is Penn State's "Nittany Lion" (pretty original, eh?). Of course, there's nothing more annoying than that lion roar that they blast from the stadium speakers, but the Nittany Lion is a close second. He is second to none in terms of silly antics and posturing. That being said, I'm sure the PSU fans have an equal amount of contempt for our beloved Brutus Buckeye, but at least he has a name.
Wait a minute. It seems I've left out OSU's biggest rival. Do they have a mascot? Apparently not. Or at least, not anymore. But perhaps someday they could convince this guy to prowl their sideline and inspire the team to feats of great strength and courage? If not, these guys might have to suffice for now.
Now it's your turn: which mascot is the most annoying? Have I left out any that should have been mentioned? As always, try to use proper decorum but do not hesitate to pour contempt where it is deserved.
Adams and Shugarts hope to lock down starting tackle spots
With expectations soaring as the Buckeyes prepare for the opening of camp, the key question marks are found on special teams, in the secondary and on the offensive line. We explored the secondary back in early June and gauged your confidence level in all three units.
The secondary was the least concerning with most of the angst centering on suspect special teams and a hyped offensive line that dominated at times but also had its share of troubles.
Like many, I assert this team will go as far as the offensive line will take it. Going a step further, it could very well come down to how far the offensive tackles can take it.
Sure, the offense features versatile depth in the backfield, a Heisman Trophy candidate under center, a freakish pass catching tight end and the steady combo of Posey and Dane on the outside but without an offensive line producing holes, protecting the QB and preserving timing in the passing attack, those weapons are greatly diminished.
Feeling as I do about the interior, the pressure is squarely on tackles Mike Adams, J.B. Shugarts and Marcus Hall with Andrew Miller and Andrew Norwell possibly in the mix.
Its been assumed that Shugarts is the clear cut right tackle starter with Adams getting first crack at left tackle however his position is seemingly far less secure than his RT counterpart. Tressel said as much earlier this week when he surmised Adams would be with the 1st team during Friday's practice but that another guy, most likely Miller, would run with the ones on the second day. From my vantage point, it seems Tressel is once again trying to challenge Adams to put a stranglehold on his spot but will he finally step up?
Big Mike's 2008 freshman campaign never really got going after a spring practice shoulder injury required surgery forced him to miss fall camp. Later, he would hurt his foot against Purdue and his season was done after playing sparingly in four games. The new year started off just as bad after Adams, with Shugarts riding shotgun, was pulled over in January and cited for possession of drug paraphernalia. The charges against both were later dropped but Adams would remain squarely in Tressel's doghouse culminating in a two game suspension to start the '09 season, presumably for more transgressions with the hippie lettuce.
Adams did manage to play in some games down the stretch and even earned his first career start against Illinois but there's a lot left to prove. Chatter this spring and summer indicates Adams has officially turned the corner with regard to work ethic. That's great news but when it comes down to it, what do you think Tressel will get from Adams this year?
Hall: OSU's 2nd best tackle?
As noted, Shugarts appears firmly entrenched as a starter at right tackle with what might be OSU's second best tackle, Hall, waiting in the wings. Shugarts had his moments a year ago, in between a wheelbarrow of false starts and Hall impressed in spot duty including a start in the Rose Bowl clinching win over Iowa.
Tressel has indicated both Shugarts and Hall could shuffle around a bit and if Adams starts slow again, it seems probable that Shugarts and Hall emerge as your starting tackles because I just don't see Tressel putting Miller out there ahead of Hall. Maybe I'm sipping too much of the Hall kool-aid but I think he is every bit as good as Shugarts and more reliable than Adams at this point.
None of this assumes Norwell makes an impact beyond serviceable depth but maybe you think differently? Bottom line, barring injuries, which two tackles do you see emerging as the starters?
The first day of Big Ten Media Days proved to be a day of enlightenment regarding the future of the conference once Commissioner Jim Delany took to the podium. During his forty minute session, we found out the following:
The league is moving quickly over the next 120 days to finalize a site for the 2011 championship game (which is no longer merely presumed and will be a reality, held in December of 2011) as well as determine the structure of divisions. The decisions on both of those fronts could come as soon as within a month, and the location of the 2011 game could just be a one year thing with the league studying locations for a longer term site afterwards (translation: See you in Indianapolis for 2011).
The league alignment likely will differ between football and other sports.
The name of the league won't be changing: "The Big Ten is the Big Ten regardless of number."
Notre Dame, at least publicly, does not figure into any future expansion plans: "I don't see them as a player." Further, the conference has paused expansion plans overall, but don't be surprised to see them pick up again in the future.
There's a push to move towards a nine-game conference schedule, within the next three to four years, though Tom Osborne did say that might have to wait until 2015.
Coming into the session, there was much uncertainty about expansion and the league's immediate plans, but Delany cleared up a lot of that.
We'll be back on hand today with more reporting, so be sure to tune in to Twitter to get our latest updates.
Video of Jim Tressel's follow-up session outside the conference hall. Highlights:
Jermil Martin has not been working out with the team and will not report to camp.
Rod Smith is close to having his grades squared away, with the thought he'll be good tomorrow.
Marcus Hall is good to go, contrary to earlier rumors that he could be an academic casualty.
The NBC4 report on Storm Klein and Nathan Williams was "inaccurate" and NBC4 has since filed an retraction.
On Pryor: "He doesn't want to let anyone down, that's just his nature."
If we had a game tomorrow, "Paul Haynes would say (Moeller) would be back at Star with Hines at safety."
The battle for the 2nd string quarterback is alive and well. Reading between the lines, it appears as if Joe Bauserman and Kenny Guiton would be 2A and 2B, but Taylor Graham is also in the mix.
Justin Boren has to improve a bit from the communications standpoint -- sometimes he "just wants to go block somebody".
Left tackle is still open. Adams will likely be running with the ones on the first day of camp, but in the second practice, "it'll probably be somebody different."
Corey Linsley will stay at center and Jack Mewhort will play guard.
If you missed Tressel's remarks earlier in the day, video and transcript are after the jump.
Thanks so much. It's good to be here. I know most of you are probably tired. I'm the 11th person or so on the docket. But excited to get going, and this kind of kicks off the reality for all of us coaches that it's going to be four or five months before we come up for air.
But it's been a lot of fun working with our group. Our 2010 Buckeyes are a little older group than what we've had. Twenty-five seniors. And I feel good about the maturity of the leadership. And I think our rising junior class has really grown quite a bit.
And you can see how they're coming along. The back half of our team, I think, we need to find out a little bit more about to see just how far along they've come and we're going to need them to provide depth.
We lost a good senior class from a year ago. And not all of them were starters, but all of them were excellent contributors. So there's some roles that have to be filled and we need this young group.
Our freshmen, most of our freshmen were in this summer, and they seem to be like a good group. And I've heard good things from academic and strength people how they're attending to things. And now I'm anxious to see them on the practice field. We get going reporting for camp on the fifth and looking forward to a fun year in 2010.
You've dealt with this quite a few years, but what's it like playing with a target on your back as a team, and do you like that in some way?
I think the reality we've had for years and years at Ohio State is that we normally have a target. I think once you get started, though, you don't really know. You're just trying to get better.
And we try to focus to become as good as we can be. And I think we're very capable team. I think we should be a team that's being targeted. I know we'll be a team that's being targeted. And we'll always get everyone's best shot. And with that in mind, we better make sure our best shot's ready each Saturday. But it's just part of the deal.
Jim, could you talk about Terrelle Pryor's growth process, his learning curve last year, Preseason Player of the Year, more turnovers early in the year and seemed to grow as the year went on. Right now how do you feel about him?
I've kind of talked through that journey a few times. I don't want to bore the people I've done that with. But Terrelle's had an interesting career in that his freshman year he was thrust in there a little bit more than any of us had planned, himself included. He was thrust in with a veteran team and trying to find his way and his identity and his acceptance, if you will.
And I thought by the end of the year he really progressed. And then his sophomore year, all of a sudden it was a brand new huddle, and he was supposedly the veteran and supposedly the guy that was going to kind of lead that group. And I thought he had to figure out the difference between what he had experienced before and what he was experiencing in his sophomore year.
I thought he learned a great deal throughout the regular season his sophomore year. And I thought it really started to really crystallize in his mind during bowl practice.
That's the beauty, if you have an opportunity to earn a bowl, getting that extra practice and guys come along, and I thought he was able to focus in on what he needed to do better and he knew his place amongst the group and all that. So I thought he performed fairly well in the bowl game. And then I thought he did the same thing in the spring.
He really focused on becoming the best he could be. And now he has a new team that he's, without question, looked to for leadership. And I thought his summer was good as well.
So I feel good about where he is right now. He's always thinking about football. I was sitting over there in the ESPN truck. And he called and had an idea. So I let Herbstreit answer the phone, let those quarterbacks talk to one another. And he is just always thinking about it. I think he's anxious to get this season underway.
Given your win in the Rose Bowl last season and Iowa's in the Orange Bowl and the expectation of those two programs coming in into this season lining up with Wisconsin, do you think the national perception of the conference has been altered a little bit changed, and could you sort of magnify on that a little bit?
I think you're only thought of as your most recent performances. If you look at the Big Ten as a whole, our recent performances, our bowl game performances, whether we won or we lost, because we lost a couple of tough ones, I thought what people remember most recently about our football is pretty good darned good.
Then I think if you really look and see how many people are coming back from those teams, I think this will be as veteran and as tough and as excellent a Big Ten in the ten years I've been here.
I think we do have a number of teams that can compete against anyone in America. And I think what the world remembers is what we did most recently.
Now, they may love to think back and do some historical perspective of whatever we haven't done or whatever, but I think the most recent evidence of Big Ten football is pretty good from this past December and January.
The Ohio State-Michigan rivalry has always meant a great deal to you. In the landscape that will include expansion and divisional play and a conference title game, probably, are you worried at all that something might be taken from that game, and what do you want to see the Big Ten do to make sure that doesn't happen?
There's always going to be change. I don't think -- I can't imagine that there would ever be a change from the fact that Ohio State and Michigan are going to square off and it's going to be exciting and meaningful and all the rest.
How it will be done exactly and where within the year and all those things, I'm sure if we look back in our history, most recently it's been in the last regular season game. Prior to that, it wasn't.
So where it will be in the future, I'm not sure. But I don't think it will ever change in its importance and the people that are involved in it, especially, what it means to all of them and all of us.
But it's going to be interesting to watch the change unfold. Whether what 12-team division setup we have or are we going to even not worry about that because we're going to be expanding to more teams or whatever, I don't know. I'm not part of those discussions.
But I think change is exciting. And anytime you add someone like Nebraska to the fold, in our case, I know it's a year from now, and it's not really relevant to today's press conference, but when you add Nebraska and their tradition and their academic excellence and all the rest, there's a lot of neat things going on.
And I'm looking forward to watching how that change unfolds. But I have no trepidation at all that it will affect the great Ohio State-Michigan rivalry.
Jim, just to follow on that. Do Ohio State and Michigan need to stay in the same division? How would you do it?
How would I do it? No one that has any power has asked me how I would do it. So I guess amongst friends here, I guess you could go one of a couple of ways. You could just go strictly geographical, which would be us and Penn State and the two Michigans and the two Indianas there and the western side with Nebraska and Iowa, Wisconsin, Northwestern, Illinois, Minnesota, that type of thing, which would be logical and so forth.
Or you could not want to get two geographical, and you could do all those computations of how you think people should be aligned and cross over and so forth.
But however they do it is going to be exciting. However they do it, it's going to create new things for us. And I'm sure that people in charge of that, our athletic directors, our Big Ten office, our college presidents, they're going to set us up with the best possible deal we can have.
Jim, coming off a win in the Rose Bowl as opposed to the previous couple years where you didn't end the season with a win, did you really notice anything with the players or the staff through spring ball or maybe even over the summer? Did you feel anything differently to end on an up note as opposed to maybe finishing with the loss and maybe having a different motivation over the summer. Was there any difference ==
Or a different staff. Who knows, they could have run us out if we didn't. I don't know.
I think when you go back and you watch the film, you see that nothing's as good as it seems and nothing is as bad, they used to tell us. I thought we did some things there.
I'm not sure we didn't play as good a game the year before that when we played Texas and lost in the last second. I'm not sure if you added up all the plays and all the performance and so forth, we didn't play just as well that day and didn't happen to win.
But obviously it feels better to win. We felt very strongly that that was a signal for the Big Ten; that we were going to step up and win that game. I think we were ranked seventh or eighth and Oregon was ranked seven or eighth, good nose-to-nose battle, we were representing Ohio State, but we were representing the Big Ten.
Especially after we watched some of our Big Ten brethren do a great job earlier in the bowl time. So it felt terrific to win that ball game.
But when you go back to work, you have to look at the realities and see where we have to get better if we want to progress in 2010.
How do you feel about the possibility of a nine-game conference slate, and do you feel there's much chance that the league could switch from eight to nine?
Probably the thing in my mind I thought wasn't a great idea for a nine game was that we may have one of our Big Ten teams, they could be one of those special teams that year, and maybe make a run at winning the whole thing and then it just so happens they've got that five away games in-conference play schedule, and they end up dropping maybe one of those that hurts them and keeps them from the national spotlight. So I've never been sure that it was the best thing for the conference.
I understand from a scheduling standpoint and all that, I know us with 36 sports, and we need to raise quite a bit of money to fund an athletic program like we have, it's really important to have home games.
If you're assigned to five away games from the get-go, you're in the midst of a home-and-home with somebody, like we like to do, all of a sudden now you've got six away games and that might be difficult for us to do our 36 sports.
So I guess just Ohio State-wise, I'm not sure it's a great financial thing. For the league, I worry a little bit about it falling wrong at the wrong time.
You talked a few minutes ago about the rising junior class you have. When you started putting that class together, could you tell maybe it was a different class, did things feel differently when you were getting that group of guys?
That's the fun part of recruiting and coaching, there's no two groups that are the same. The makeup of our classes typically is about 60 to 65 percent Ohio guys and 40, 35 to 40 percent guys either from states that touch us or even further.
And this group was a little bit more far and wide. I think it was even. It was like 50/50. A lot of them were very well thought of, which is a challenge of its own, as a young man tries to progress and meet those expectations. But it was a situation where a handful of them were thrown into the lineup in 2008 as real young guys, and so it's been fun watching them progress.
And I just see a lot of growth in them. And that's the fun of what we do. We get all nervous and so forth, and we talk a lot about how we do, whether we won the Rose Bowl or won this many games or that many games.
I know what coaches get nervous about is how does young person progress, are we getting him ready for the rest of his life.
It's fun to see those moments when you see the evidence that guys are coming along. And that class just seems to me that they're giving us more and more evidence that they're coming along. You're only one phone call away from maybe not feeling that way, but I feel good about that group.
And the expansion question, do you find yourself and your coaching staff getting caught up and theorizing about what could happen and what may happen, the same way the media ends up doing? Are you worried about what may happen and how it's going to impact Ohio State, and is that something you guys actively discuss?
Interestingly, our staff -- I'm not sure we've spent three minutes speaking about expansion, because there's really nothing that we have to do with it.
But I know our players, for instance, we have three seniors here this couple of days, and we have 25 seniors who are -- they don't really care one bit about expansion.
In 2010, we know what the deal is. Now, are some younger guys thinking about it, maybe. But I don't think, the time I spend with young people, the future to them is next Friday. The future to them isn't 2011.
That's not the way they think. So, no, we haven't worried too much about it, nor talked too much about it. And I think it's exciting. When the time is right and the moment happens, it's going to be fun to see it unfold. But I think our guys are wired up about 2010.
You just mentioned about being nervous, about how a young person progresses. I'm curious. Now that Maurice Clarett is back on campus taking classes, is there any participation for him in the football program, not officially, by just coming by the office, seeing people, or is he just like any other undergrad there?
He's not on a scholarship or anything. So he's just like any other undergrad from that standpoint. He knows he's welcome to stop by.
And he knows we're very busy and so forth. One of the first things he said when he came back, I said, you know, you ought to let people know that what your intentions are and so forth. And he said, well, the biggest intention I have is to not disrupt this 2010 football season that's coming up.
And so he wants to be in the background, but he wants to be a student and he wants to grow. And just like anything else, day by day we'll see how we progress.
UPDATE: NBC4 has issued a correction on their original story, while Tressel said the report is "inaccurate".
NBC4 is reporting Buckeye defenders Storm Klein and Nathan Williams have been charged with misdemeanor assault stemming from an incident early Sunday morning.
Officers were dispatched to Riverside Methodist Hospital on an assault report at about 4:17 a.m. The 20-year-old victim said he was at a birthday party his friend threw for him at a house off East 15th Avenue. The victim said he woke up and found two people harassing his girlfriend. He said he told the two males to stop. The victim said the males knocked him to the ground and began punching him. The victim suffered a cut under his right eye, and the injury required stitches.
If true, this would be a second strike of sorts for Williams, who was arrested for shoplifting as a freshman in December of 2008.
If you haven't already begun to emerge from offseason hibernation, today brings a double jolt to remind you that the start of college football season is closer than you might imagine.
For starters, we're a month away from hitting the field against Marshall in a rare Thursday night tilt in the Shoe. Closer to the now, Big Ten Media Days kickoff today in Chicago.
For those of you near a TV, both the Big Ten Network and ESPN News will air coverage beginning at 11am ET. For the rest of us, the network will also stream all of the press conferences online (Tressel goes on at 2pm ET). If you want to turn things up to eleven, you can follow us on Twitter, as we'll be on the scene weighing in with an appropriate amounts of snark and reverence. HEY, THERE'S JOE PATERNO! Also, a quick thank you to everyone that submitted a question last week.
We'll spend the day discussing the media's preseason picks for top teams (Ohio State, Iowa, Wisconsin), offensive player of the year (Pryor with a slight chance of Clay, igniting howls from Penn State fans if it is the former) and defensive player of the year (Clayborn), but the better part of today will be spent with one eye towards 2011. Indeed, you'll soon know the thoughts of every coach in the league on the addition of Nebraska, divisional alignment, a championship game, and future expansion.
Unfortunately, we likely won't be getting any hard information on divisions or the championship game, but Dr. Tom Osborne will be in the house to help hammer out some of those details in the hopes of announcing something soon.
Speaking of big games, the Pac-10 said the idea of hosting a marquee annual kickoff game pitting a league team against one from another conference is in the discussion stage. The report mentioned the Big Ten as a potential partner, but with plans to hold the event at the Rose Bowl, I can't imagine Jim Delany would be too eager to play two guaranteed "home" games for Pac-10 teams every season. It makes sense in January, but if we're talking about a season opener, may I suggest Soldier Field?
When John Maynard Keynes was criticized for having changed his monetary policy during the great depression, his response was brilliantly succinct:
When the facts change, I change my mind. What do you do, sir?
Well, the facts have changed, sir. After long having advocated more open practices based on the USC model of weekday openness and Saturday curb-stompings, the problems the SEC and, well, USC, are currently experiencing remind us that sometimes the Kremlin/Lubyanka setup on Olentangy River Road really is the way to go.
The tailgate is coming and it will be fierce. We'll have more details soon (including a pretty neat surprise), but keep the morning and early afternoon of Saturday, the 11th open and set your GPS to 40.010804,-83.027458.
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