Presser Bullets: The Beginning of 'The Grind' and the Return of Braxton Miller

By Patrick Maks on March 10, 2015 at 11:55 am
Urban Meyer.

Following Ohio State's first practice of the spring, coach Urban Meyer met with reporters to talk about the team's national title defense and a campaign the Buckeyes have dubbed, "The Grind." 

  • The day after winning the national championship, Meyer said Ohio State needed to guard itself from complacency. “The morale of the team and the morale of the locker room as long as a program feels like it’s getting better, the motivation will be there.” He added: “That’s going to be the essence of 2015.”
  • On Tuesday morning, Cardale Jones, J.T. Barrett and Braxton Miller all were at practice. Jones, being the only healthy quarterback, took most of the reps. But Miller, who is recovering from shoulder surgery, could run/jog and Barrett, who’s recovering from a broken ankle, could throw. 
  • Meyer said there's no stress in having to make a decision on which quarterback to start come fall. "There’s no stress at all as far as the functionality of the position … if I disliked one or two of them, it wouldn’t be that hard."
  • Meyer played down Ohio State’s quarterback derby between the three. “Each player, each day is separate … Cardale’s getting more reps than he’s ever gotten. It’s day-to-day, player-by-player, not what’s going to happen, not what we foresee.”
  • Meyer on Miller practicing again (even if it’s at half-speed): “I just love seeing him, the relationship part of me that I love Braxton Miller.”
  • More Meyer on Miller: “He’s always done what I’ve asked him to do,” Meyer said. “Is there a part of me that's excited to see that guy warm up … absolutely.”
  • Meyer said he hasn’t talked to Miller about playing another position in the case his shoulder doesn’t recover fully by fall camp. “All our conversations are about the health of the athlete, I just want to see him get healthy. He’s athletic enough to (switch positions), but I still think he’s a quarterback.
  • Meyer on the notion of the Buckeyes being slower than teams in the SEC: “You can’t run? That’s blown away. We can run pretty good.”
  • Meyer said sophomore H-back Dontre Wilson is out as he recovers from another foot surgery. Meyer also said the Buckeyes are being “very cautious” with Ezekiel Elliott, who had wrist surgery late last month.
  • Meyer on spring ball: “It might look kind of ugly and nasty at times because there’s guys that might not be ready to be out there yet.
  • Meyer on Cardale Jones, who guided Ohio State to the National Championship. “He became a very functional player with repetition … he’s still raw.” Meyer said he wants Jones to get “a  million reps this spring.”
  • Meyer continued to lament the defensive line depth. “I’m very disappointed in the young defensive line we brought in here” in respect to their on-field production. “If Mike Bennett leaves and you’re not as good as Mike Bennett, our team’s not as good.”
  • Meyer on losing Tom Herman and Stan Drayton and the transition to new staff members in Tim Beck and Tony Alford. “You just worry will there be a drop-off in that room … every year’s different, every team’s different.”
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