Presser Bullets: Ryan Day, Kerry Coombs Buckeyes Talk Oregon Loss, “There's Enough Blame to Go Around”

By Griffin Strom on September 11, 2021 at 4:46 pm
Ryan Day
© Adam Cairns/Columbus Dispatch via Imagn Content Services, LLC

Ohio State suffered its first regular-season defeat since 2018 on Saturday.

After the 35-28 loss to Oregon in the Buckeyes' second game of the year, Ryan Day and Kerry Coombs appeared in front of the media to discuss what went wrong during the home opener, along with C.J. Stroud and a host of other Ohio State players.

Here's a bullet-point breakdown of everything Day and company said following the loss.

Ryan Day 

  • Day thanks the Buckeye crowd and everyone for showing up.
  • "It was a game we were never really in control of." Day says Oregon ran the ball and the Buckeyes couldn't really run the ball. Day says the Buckeyes were "always playing catch-up" on Saturday.
  • On Josh Proctor's injury, Day says it looked "not good on the field." Day says he's praying for Proctor.
  • On tension with Coombs on the sideline, Day says it was just a heat of the moment thing. Day says the defense stepped up and got stops late. "There's enough blame to go around here."
  • Day says the Ohio State offense seemed "out of whack" on Saturday, and cites not converting on fourth downs as a setback.
  • Day says the offense wasn't balanced, given the pass-heavy numbers.
  • Where does Day stand with Kerry Coombs at coordinator? "Ultimately it comes back on me, I'm the head coach."
  • "Is it the personnel, is it the scheme or is it the coaching?" Day on the defensive struggles.
  • "When you go through adversity, you find out a lot about your team, you find out a lot about your leadership." Day says in times like this, there's a lot of "finger-pointing" that goes on. "This is not fatal, but it certainly hurts."
  • What does the Ohio State defense hang its hat on right now? Day says eliminating big plays is the goal of this style of defense, but Oregon was able to make a few on Saturday. "We're not executing."
  • On what the most glaring error on the defense was, Day says the perimeter run play that Oregon executed on several occasions is an issue.
  • On the potential targeting call, Day says the referees told him Sewell turned his head at the last moment. "It didn't look like it to me."

QB C.J. Stroud

  • Stroud says every time the Buckeyes passed the 50-yard-line in the first half, they couldn't put the ball in the end zone.
  • "Our game plan is always solid." Stroud doesn't question the play-calling from the coaching staff.
  • Stroud said he felt very comfortable today, and that being home was "way better than being on the road."
  • On late interception, Stroud said "I just have to put it on him. Simple as that. It is what it is."
  • Stroud said he had some nicks and bruises coming into Saturday's game.
  • Haskell Garrett told Stroud after the game that "the season's not over," and that the team can't start pointing the finger at each other.
  • On Stroud's shoulder, he says "I was healthy enough to play."
  • Stroud said Williams and Henderson did a great job at running back today, but that the offense didn't get some of the holes that it expected to in the run game.

Thayer Munford, Teradja Mitchell, Jaxon Smith-Njigba, Haskell Garrett

  • Munford says Oregon didn't throw anything at them that they haven't seen before. 
  • On the holding call that stalled a late Buckeye drive: "I can't put myself in a bad position. ...I put myself in a horrible position." Munford said it was not holding.
  • Mitchell said the Buckeyes need to work on run fits on defense.
  • Smith-Njigba says Stroud has a big heart and is a great competitor. Says coaches stayed in his ear early to say that balls would eventually come his way after not seeing a lot of targets early.
  • Mitchell says he feels a "huge responsibility" to lead the team and get it back on track after the loss.
  • Haskell Garrett says Oregon QB Anthony Brown did a good job getting ball of getting the ball out of his hands fast.
  • Garrett says "nobody should be hanging their heads low" after the loss. Garrett says "we did it in '14, we can do it in 2021."
  • Mitchell says post-snap communication was an issue for the Buckeye defense.
  • On having a big game in the loss, Smith-Njigba says it's hard to celebrate his individual game during a tough loss. "It feels good, but I want to win. I'm ready for next week and the rest of the season."

Kerry Coombs

  • On issues encountered setting the edge on defense, Coombs says he takes full responsibility, and does not want anyone to think he's blaming the players.
  • "My response is that I'm responsible. That's my job. We have to play better." 
  • Coombs says it's early in the season and the defense is still finding itself out. "We have good depth and good talent."
  • On if he feels any heat: "I'm disappointed. That's how I feel. I hate losing with a passion."
  • On if being a DC is more challenging than being a position coach, Coombs reiterates that he takes full responsibility and that the game today was frustrating.
  • "I think the amount of plays that were run into the boundary side was something that they probably hadn't shown a good deal of." Coombs says that's where the Buckeyes had the most difficulty today.
  • "The defensive structure that has been in place is one that has been successful and one that people feel comfortable with."
  • "I love the scheme, I love the players, and to have the opportunity to be a football coach at Ohio State is a blessing, and I don't take it lightly. I can assure you, we will get better."
  • Coombs says he doesn't think there's any question that the Buckeye defense has to do things differently moving forward.


View 414 Comments