Urban Meyer Coach's Show Recap: Indiana Outlook, Kevin Wilson Will Coach from the Booth, and Jerome Baker's Maturity

By D.J. Byrnes on August 29, 2017 at 12:07 pm
Urban Meyer Coach's Show: indiana

With the 2017 season set to kick off with primetime trip to Indiana on Thursday, Urban Meyer took to 97.1 The Fan's airwaves to discuss all things Buckeye football with Paul Keels and Jim Lachey.

Meyer "likes our team and likes where we're at," ahead of trip to Indiana. "I can't remember having seven fifth-year guys." Noted fifth-year guys are rare these days because players either go pro or get beat out and "move on."

Meyer likes the new camp schedule that did away with two-a-day practices. "My only thing is it's too long."

Coffee with the Coach Question from James in Weston: "Why nine team captains?"

  • Meyer changed his approach while sitting in the coaches room with then-defensive line coach Mike Vrabel, who was never voted captain but "was a captain."
  • He let his players pick, giving them six options after usually only giving them three or four.
  • Nine guys "got a lot of votes, so why would you hold that against them?"
  • "When you talk captains, it's not who's going to go call the coin flip. Donald Duck could do that. It's who is going to lead the team in the locker room."
  • Meyer defers to player's judgment on captain selections. "Players know. Coaches think they know."

The defensive line is "all healthy and ready to go. That's our strength. They're fast. They're athletic, and they're taught well." Noted they've held them back in practice last few weeks. "Now it's time to let them go play."

The defensive staff "could coordinate anywhere in America... They believe in our culture." Noted former Browns coach Mike Pettine came to watch practice and noted the same thing. Egos aren't a problem, because those things are left at the door. "Those things aren't tolerated here."

Junior linebacker Jerome Baker was once an immature guy, and the coaching staff had to "beat him down." Baker is now one of the staff's favorite players. After originally committing to Florida, Baker's mom called him and said, "Keep working on him. I'm not letting him go away." So Meyer kept writing letters to her.

On Indiana:

  • A very good team, going back to Kevin Wilson coaching there. "One of the best runs in school history."
  • "They're well coached, but they're very good players."
  • "They've gotten very good on defense," Meyer said, lauding Tom Allen (former DC, now head coach).
  • Called Indiana the "biggest opener since we've been here" since it's a conference game.

On the Hoosier's 4-2-5:

  • The difference between a 4-2-5 and 4-3 is negligible.
  • Their base defense is very good. They also play some Bear defense, and they've defended us very well. Noted the 4-2-5 gives them flexibility in coverage. 
  • Indiana defended them "very well last year based on our tendencies... We've switched some things up this year."

On sophomore H-Back Demario McCall:

  • Had hernia surgery in the spring.
  • Very much a factor in the return game.
  • "We still feel very strong about him. He just has to stay healthy and become a dynamic player. ... We all love him."

Converted defensive end Rashod Berry moved to tight end because "that's originally what we recruited him at” and the ridiculous depth at defensive end. Berry has worked "so doggone hard" to get ready to play, which he will at Indiana.

A drunk man from Kenton (probably redundant) called to ask why Ohio State starts with Indiana and why local hero Noah Furbush isn't playing at Michigan. 

  • On Indiana: "We're playing them because they told us to."
  • On Furbush: "I have no idea."

On the location of assistants during games:

  • Defensive coordinator Greg Schiano will be in the booth, with the rest of the staff on the field.
  • Offensive coordinator Kevin Wilson and quarterbacks coach Ryan Day will be in the booth, with the rest of the staff on the field.

Meyer raved about junior walk-on wide receiver C.J. Saunders, who will travel to Indiana. "You might see him play" at Indiana.

Freshman punter Drue Chrismann is "very good." Sean Neurnberger is still battling consistency, with a big field goal day coming up today. "We expect him to make every one."

Meyer feels "very good" about safety Damon Webb. "I'm hoping for a Vonn Bell-like season from him." Erick Smith and Jordan Fuller will be the next guys in with freshman Isaiah Pryor spelling them.

[Full recap available at 97.1 The Fan]

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