Another week of Ohio State football means another Monday press conference for Urban Meyer, so Ohio State's head coach met with reporters at the Woody Hayes Athletic Center on Monday to review the Buckeyes' 62-39 win over Michigan and look ahead to this week's Big Ten Championship Game against Northwestern.
Meyer already fielded questions for a half hour during Sunday's Big Ten Championship Game teleconference, so there weren't a ton of questions left to be asked on Monday, but Meyer nonetheless held court with the media to continue discussing the Buckeyes' impressive rivalry game performance and the team's preparation for this week's game against the Wildcats, which is scheduled for an 8 p.m. kickoff at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis on Saturday.
Here's a sampling of what Meyer had to say:
- In addition to offensive player of the game Parris Campbell, defensive player of the game Malik Harrison and special teams players of the game Justin Hilliard, Chris Olave and Keandre Jones, Ohio State's other team champions for Saturday's game were Isaiah Prince, Demetrius Knox, Michael Jordan, Malcolm Pridgeon, Thayer Munford, Dwayne Haskins, Mike Weber, J.K. Dobbins, Luke Farrell, Johnnie Dixon, Terry McLaurin, K.J. Hill and Olave on offense, as well as Chase Young, Robert Landers, Davon Hamilton, Jonathon Cooper, Tuf Borland, Brendon White and Jeffrey Okudah on defense.
- Meyer also gave special recognition to Sevyn Banks, Amir Riep, Blake Haubeil and Hill for their efforts on special teams. Also said Josh Proctor has been an "unsung hero" on special teams and Teradja Mitchell "played one of his best games" on Saturday.
- Meyer said Cooper played "exceptionally well. Great energy."
- Harrison had "arguably his best game as a Buckeye."
- Meyer said Olave is an "elite player as a freshman."
- Meyer said he just done watching Northwestern for about three hours, and the Wildcats "play excellent defense."
- On Haskins dropping his pads in the running game, Meyer quipped: "He dropped some other things, too ... I probably shouldn't say that."
- Wyatt Davis will start in place of injured starter Demetrius Knox at right guard against Northwestern.
- Campbell gave a "great pregame speech" before Saturday's game, Meyer said.
- Meyer said Haskins has been a hard worker when it comes to film study. "He was very well-trained when he came in."
- "Our linebackers, I thought, played very well Saturday," Meyer said, and he felt like the defensive line controlled the game up front.
- Meyer says the offensive line's consistency has improved up front. Thought Saturday was one of that unit's best games.
- Meyer said it hasn't been decided whether Ohio State will continue to use the Tate Martell package, but "I'm a big Tate Martell fan, so I'm pushing it real hard ... I want him in the game."
- Meyer mentioned Michigan's Rashan Gary, Chase Winovich and Devin Bush by number when discussing how impressed he was with Ohio State's offensive line performance on Saturday.
- On Northwestern coach Pat Fitzgerald: "He's one of the best coaches in college football."
- How special is it to be back in the Big Ten Championship Game? "It's only special if you win it."
- Meyer described K.J. Hill as a "tough guy" with "a little arrogance to him."
- Wyatt Davis was "a little lost in the weeds" his freshman year, but has "been scratching and clawing for playing time" the last five weeks. Meyer said he didn't want to rotate him in because he didn't want to disrupt the flow on the offensive line.
- Asked about his health and his future, Meyer channeled his inner Bill Belichick, simply responding with the word "Good" four or five times.
- On Ohio State's mantra to contributing on special teams: "You will not play a down at Ohio State until you contribute on special teams ... every great player we've ever had started on special teams phase, and had to play well."
- On late former Northwestern coach Randy Walker: "Randy's one of my favorite guys ... he was an inspiration for me."
- Meyer acknowledges that Northwestern has a "huge advantage" from being able to prepare for Ohio State ahead of time while the Buckeyes had to focus all of their efforts last week on playing Michigan. Now, the Buckeyes have to catch up.
- Meyer acknowledged it is more of a challenge to motivate his team to play a team with inferior talent, but said this week's game does not fit that category: "They've won 15 out of 16 Big Ten games."
- Asked about the College Football Playoff and his future plans on the final two questions of the day, Meyer filibustered about special teams.
Stay tuned with Eleven Warriors for coverage throughout the week as Ohio State prepares for Saturday's game.