With a third win in the books after Saturday's 49-27 win over Rutgers, Ohio State coach Ryan Day joined the Buckeye Roundtable show on Monday night in his first media appearance since watching the film of the Buckeyes' game against the Scarlet Knights and as the team's preparation begins for their fourth game of the season at Maryland.
A quick recap of what Day had to say in his first interview of the week:
- Day on Justin Fields' impact on Ohio State's early success this season: “He's a big part of it, for sure.” He said the Buckeyes have put an emphasis on starting games fast, and he's pleased with the way they've been able to do that in the last game.
- On the Buckeyes' success throwing the deep ball this year: “Justin has a strong arm, it allows us to take advantage.”
- On the fake punt, Day said Ohio State knew Rutgers was going to do everything it could to try to gain an advantage, so the Buckeyes wanted to be aggressive. “It's one thing to say it, it's another thing to do it when you're in the moment. So you kind of hold your breath, but those guys were holding me to it, and it worked out.”
- Day said Josh Proctor, Marcus Hooker, Jameson Williams and Xavier Johnson “gave extraordinary effort” to get Rutgers' opening kickoff down at the 35-yard line after the Scarlet Knights ran a trick play and threw the ball across the field.
- Other than the punt return that went back for a touchdown, Day believes Ohio State responded well to Rutgers' special teams trick plays, but that film gives the Buckeyes “a lot to learn from.”
- On the lackluster second-half performance against Rutgers: “We've got to do a better job of bringing energy, up 35-3 ... We've got to do a better job, and we will.”
- Day said Maryland is playing “with a lot of confidence.” He's impressed by Maryland quarterback Taulia Tagovailoa and his receivers, and said the Terrapins' defense “really did a great job last week against Penn State, played a lot of man coverage, disrupted their pass game.”
- “They've upgraded their talent, and they're playing with a lot of confidence, and so we've got a challenge ahead of us. We've got to go into their place and play well, play four quarters.”
- Day said he recruited Taulia Tagovailoa before he went to Alabama. “I got to know he and the family. Great football people, really good family. You knew he was going to be a really good player, and happy for him that he's doing well.”