During his weekly appearance on the Buckeye Roundtable show on Monday night, Ryan Day indicated that Ohio State right guard Wyatt Davis and cornerback Shaun Wade have been cleared to play.
“It's great to have those guys back,” Day said. “Wyatt got great news and Shaun's good to go.”
There had been some uncertainty surrounding their eligibility after both of them opted out and declared their intentions to enter the 2021 NFL draft – as they had consulted with agents – before they decided to return to Ohio State when the Big Ten announced it would resume play in October. Davis said at the time of his announcement that he wanted to return to play but was “working now to make that a reality.”
Based on Day's comments on the Ohio State IMG Sports Network on Monday, though, it sounds as if Davis has received the go-ahead to play this fall, while defensive coordinator Kerry Coombs had already said last week that there was “no concern” about Wade being cleared to return. And Day believes all Big Ten players who opted out should be cleared to return to play if they want to do so, given the unprecedented circumstances that arose when the Big Ten postponed its fall season – seemingly taking away the conference teams' chance to compete for a spot in the College Football Playoff – before rescheduling the season earlier this month.
“I also just think that that's the right thing to do for these guys in the Big Ten, whether it's (Purdue wide receiver) Rondale Moore or (Rashod) Bateman at Minnesota, I just think those guys deserve to play,” Day said. “They got kind of put in a different situation than we've ever seen before in the history of college football, and now that we're playing again, I think all of those guys deserve the opportunity to play. I think it's good for football and good for the Big Ten.”
Other updates from Day's appearance on Monday night's show:
- On padded practices starting Wednesday: “I think some guys look forward to it more than others ... It's about playing physical. That's the biggest thing. We got to get back to playing with our pads down, blocking, tackling ... all the things that come with playing football.”
- “We got to make sure when we come out to play Nebraska, we're playing physical, we've got our pads down and we're playing tough.”
- Day said the Buckeyes don't do the Oklahoma drill much anymore because of the injury risk.
- On starting padded practices while also preparing for the season opener: “We're not that far away from the game ... we'll slowly start to introduce Nebraska as we go, because there's a lot of concepts that we carry over from week to week anyway.”
- Day said the Buckeyes plan to rotate all the backup quarterbacks until they see if someone separates from the others.
- On Marcus Crowley's recovery from torn ACL, along with Master Teague's recovery from an Achilles injury: “He and Master really have both worked hard to get back on the field. They're still working through all that. They've done a good job, though.”
- Day said the Buckeyes are “hopeful“ Kamryn Babb will be play this season after missing each of the last two seasons with knee injuries. “He could be an amazing story one day, so really proud of the work he's done.”
- On Wyatt Davis and Shaun Wade being cleared to play after opting out and then opting back in: “Wyatt got great news, and Shaun's good to go.”
- Day said Ohio State did not remove any more black stripes during Monday's practice. “It was kind of raining sideways out there,” Day said of the weather during practice.
- Day said he watched Mississippi State's win over LSU on Saturday and was impressed by what he saw from the Bulldogs. He acknowledged that it was “bizarre” for him and his fellow coaches to watch the games on Saturday while Ohio State still isn't playing.