The Eleven Warriors Web Report comes to you weekly from the Spectrum Sports studios in downtown Columbus, featuring our own Beau Bishop, Dan Hope and James Grega.
Although the Ohio State men's basketball team is coming off another win on Monday night to improve to 9-0 in Big Ten play, this week's show started by addressing the biggest news of the day, that being the Ohio State football team's move to promote quarterbacks coach Ryan Day from co-offensive coordinator to offensive coordinator, a move that will reportedly also put primary play calling duties in Day's hands.
While that move appears to move Day ahead of Wilson – who is also still with the Buckeyes as an offensive coordinator – in the hierarchy of Ohio State's coaching staff, the reality of the promotion, Hope said, was that it was likely a necessary move to keep Day around after Day turned down an opportunity to become the offensive coordinator of the NFL's Tennessee Titans.
"They had to give him a new title and a raise to keep him around," Hope said. "So I think the promotion, first and foremost, was about keeping him around and investing in him. And in terms of how it will change the offense, I think with him and Kevin Wilson, I think they were already working very much in collaboration in last year."
Regardless of whether Day got a promotion or not, Hope said he expected Day to play a crucial role in how the offense would be rebuilt around its new starting quarterback in 2018.
"I think that Day already had a really big role in terms of managing this offense and in terms of especially the development of the passing game, and I think as you looked forward to 2018, with this quarterback competition that's coming up – Dwayne Haskins, Joe Burrow, Tate Martell – no matter who wins that job, they were going to have to rebuild this offense a little bit to work around that quarterback, and he was going to play a huge role in that already," Hope said.
While Bishop speculated at the possibility that Ohio State could be keeping Day in the fold with visions of him eventually succeeding Urban Meyer as head coach, Grega said he believes the promotion of Day and the recent hiring of new defensive assistant coach Alex Grinch indicate that the Buckeyes are building for the future.
"I don't know if they've told any of these guys, you're the head coach in waiting, but I do think they are building something for the future," Grega said. "You're bringing in young, fresh coaches that will want to recruit, that will go out and recruit good players, but they're also going to bring in fresh ideas, which I think is something that Ohio State – especially on offense, if you look at their offense – they could use some kind of influx of new ideas and more exciting plays."
After the coaching conversation, the panel did turn its attention back to the basketball Buckeyes, who beat Nebraska 64-59 in their most recent game and continued to show, as described by Bishop, that they could earn "gut-check wins."
"The give-a-damn level on this team is off the charts," Bishop said.
Grega said he has been impressed with the way the Buckeyes have found ways to win their last few games even when Keita Bates-Diop's shot hasn't been falling at the same rate at which it was earlier in the month.
"When one thing's not going well, they don't panic," Grega said. "And that's really the mark of a great team. You find different ways, a variety of ways to win."
Hope said he believes the Buckeyes have been successful because "everybody is accepting and understanding and playing within their roles right now."
"Because of that, this team's on the same page, and they're just clicking," Hope said.
For further discussion on the basketball Buckeyes and Day's new role as well as on J.T. Barrett's performance at last week's East-West Shrine Game, watch this week's Eleven Warriors Report on Spectrum Sports Mid-Ohio, which premieres at 7 p.m. Tuesday.