For the first time as Ohio State's new head coach, Ryan Day represented the Buckeyes at Big Ten Media Days on Thursday afternoon.
In his first open question-and-answer session of the afternoon, Day took the podium at the Hilton Chicago for about 15 minutes for his official head coach's press conference.
A quick recap of what the Buckeyes' new leader had to say:
- Day opened his press conference by thanking Jim Delany for everything he has done in his three decades as the Big Ten's commissioner.
- On K.J. Hill staying at Ohio State for his fifth year: "Him deciding to come back was a huge deal for us."
- On Jonathon Cooper: “He’s the epitome of what it means to be a Buckeye."
- On the defense: "There's a group of guys over there that are salty, and have a lot to prove."
- Day said the Buckeyes plan to use a wide variety of personnel groupings on defense.
- Tuf Borland is "being pushed" by Teradja Mitchell at middle linebacker.
- Day praised the tight end group, saying that Luke Farrell, Rashod Berry and Jeremy Ruckert are all battling for playing time.
- Day said there are seven offensive linemen battling for playing time (Thayer Munford, Jonah Jackson, Josh Myers, Wyatt Davis, Nicholas Petit-Frere, Branden Bowen and Joshua Alabi) and said that battle will play out in August.
- "I think the easy thing to ask is how are you different than Urban Meyer, and that's not something I really like to answer, because first off, you don't replace a legend." Said he just wants to be himself.
- "I feel great about the team. I love our team. I love our players. I love being around the guys."
- "We have a lot to prove. This is a new staff, this is a new team. We haven't done anything."
- On Ohio State quarterbacks Justin Fields and Gunnar Hoak: "Justin and Gunnar are going to compete like heck to win the job, but at the end of the day, it's going to come down to who can play the game."
- Do you think you'll talk to Urban Meyer much during the season? "For sure. I'd be crazy not to. ... He's been unbelievable in terms of understanding when to be there, and when to step away."
- Day says Ohio State's wide receivers have an unselfish mentality, and they need to keep that mentality in that room.
- On Chip Kelly: "He's like a father, brother, uncle to me ... he and Urban are probably the two biggest influences, Steve Addazio would be the third, in what they've done for me and my career."
Day is set to meet with the media for another hour in an hourlong breakout interview session from 3:15 to 4:15 p.m., while Ohio State seniors Jonathon Cooper, Jordan Fuller and K.J. Hill will field questions from reporters from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m., so stay tuned with Eleven Warriors for more updates on the Buckeyes later this afternoon and evening.