Following Ohio State's first practice of preseason camp on Friday morning, Ohio State head coach Ryan Day met with the media to recap the first day and answer some burning questions from assembled reporters.
A bullet-point recap of what Day had to say:
- On the first practice: "It was just good to get everybody out there and start football again."
- Day said the Buckeyes want to build toughness in preseason camp even though they also hope to avoid injuries. "At the end of the day it's going to come down with how tough we are, and how well we tackle."
- On the offensive line: "I feel as good as I've felt in the past couple years in terms of our depth."
- On the health of the team: "Everybody was out there that we thought we'd be."
- On Thayer Munford starting with the second-team offensive line, Ryan Day said the Buckeyes are going to rotate players up front to give more offensive linemen first-team experience.
- On how this year is different than last year, Ryan Day said it feels like it's back to normal, unlike last year when he was the acting head coach for fall camp while Urban Meyer was on administrative leave.
- Day said he arrived on campus just after 6 a.m. today.
- On Ohio State cornerbacks Jeffrey Okudah, Damon Arnette and Shaun Wade: "I'd be disappointed if all three of those guys weren't really good this year."
- Ryan Day noted that because he was the acting head coach during fall camp last year, this is the first time he's going through something as a head coach for the second time.
- Day said he has been impressed with how Gunnar Hoak has picked up the offense so far. Said the Buckeyes need to have three quarterbacks (Justin Fields, Hoak and Chris Chugunov) ready to play because anything can happen during the season, but doesn't expect to be a decision on a starter for at least a week.
- Day said he will allow the players to vote on captains and decide from there how many captains Ohio State will have this season, but said it could be anywhere from 1-2 captains to 4-5.
- Master Teague and Demario McCall have "got to step up" behind J.K. Dobbins at running back, Day said. Day said Dobbins is leaner this year, losing 4% body fat, “which is significant, because if you look at him, there’s not a lot of body fat on him."
- Asked about his beard, Day said he will probably keep it for the first week of fall camp and then shave it off. Said he had one going before Big Ten media days but decided he should shave for that.
- On Ohio State’s preseason ranking: “Truth be told, we haven’t done anything ... We’ve got to prove we’re the best team in the county."
- Day said the players who are "gold guys" during the offseason find a way to make an impact and be leaders on the field. Ohio State characterizes players by gold, red and blue, and said players "fight" to be gold guys because they know how important that is. Day said the Buckeyes don't have many blue guys right now; most of them have moved their way up into the red.
- Day said the new renovations to the Woody Hayes Athletic Center have "really catapulted" Ohio State in recruiting. For the current players, "We want them to feel like this is their home."
- In practice, "my eyes just naturally go to the quarterback," Day said, because of his experience playing and coaching the position. Because it's a new group of quarterbacks, Day and passing game coordinator Mike Yurcich are watching them closely every snap.
Stay tuned with Eleven Warriors for more coverage from Ohio State's first day of fall camp. Several Buckeyes players are also expected to meet with the media today.