The Buckeyes are off this week, but the Ryan Day Radio show is not.
Ohio State's head coach took to 97.1 The Fan on Thursday afternoon to give an update on the Buckeyes as they head into an off weekend – and he was even joined by Ohio State basketball coach Chris Holtmann for the show's final segment.
Here are some of the highlights.
On the bye week
- Day said they're keeping the schedule the same this week to build some consistency.
- "I felt like the routine was important this year."
- Day said some players will get more rest than others, but he wants everyone to "keep their edge."
- "We have to keep building. We've got some really good teams in this second half."
On the performance against Maryland
- "We executed a lot better than we have in the past."
- "Great to get some help from the special teams too."
- "Stiffer competition as we head into these last two games."
On the long touchdown drive to start the game
- "That drive took like a quarter and a half to get down the field."
- "I felt like it was the right thing to go for it."
- Day said Ohio State's been working on the goalline fade.
On Maryland's defense
- Day said Maryland's defense looked a lot different than what they saw on film.
- "No, it was different."
- "They didn't go radically different, but it was different enough."
On Ohio State's defense against Maryland
- Day said Ohio State changed their look up a little bit against Maryland.
- Day said he felt they did a good job of getting pressure on the quarterback in passing scenarios.
- "At the end of the day, we have to stop the run game to even get there, and I think we did that.
On Thayer Munford
- "He's done everything we've asked of him."
- "He'll go down in history as one of the best on the O-Line here."
- Day said it would be great to see him win the Lombardi.
On getting to play some depth
- "It gives us a reference point," Day said of getting young players on the field.
- "A bunch of guys have gotten on the field the past two weeks, which has been great."
- Day said sometimes they struggle to get lined up and know their assignments because they've played scout team all week and haven't been practicing.
On Steele Chambers
- "Steele really hasn't played the position long, but you can see him flash, which is exciting."
- Day said he thinks it helps Steele Chambers that he used to play offense. He can see the game from a different perspective.
On the potential of getting rid of the kickoff
- "I would vote for doing away with kickoff return."
- Day said he's in favor of just giving the receiving team the ball at the 20-yard line.
- Day said those are the biggest collisions in the game and he feels it would be in the best interest of player safety to remove that play.
- Day said he thinks onside kicks should still be allowed.
- "Whether that happens or not, I don't know."
On what he'll do this weekend
- Ryan Day said he'll take a break this Saturday and won't do much mentally.
- Day said mental rest is just as important as physical rest.
- Day said he'll probably watch some football on television, however. "I just get to watch other people stress out and be a fan for a little bit."
- Day said he doesn't really know when a good time for a bye week is, but it's always good to have break.
On Noah Ruggles and Jesse Mirko
- "That's the goal is for them to not be out there," Day joked.
- Day said their role is "going to be really, really important."
- "We're going to need them in the second half of the season."
- Day said Ruggles hit a 57-yarder in practice. "It was good to see him hit one from that far out."
On freshmen that didn't play their senior seasons
- "I think now, at the halfway point, we've moved on at this point."
- Day said they did see those ramifications at the beginning of the season.
- "The only thing I see are some young guys who maybe hit the wall as freshmen.
On C.J. Stroud's health
- "It's good to have him healthy – that gives him confidence."
- Day said his ability to practice healthy has been important too.
- Day said he doesn't know how much the injury really affected his play.
- "I know that the games we're about to get into are tough."
- "I'm proud of his work so far."
- "I think the guys are really starting to believe in him, and that's a big part of it."
On TreVeyon Henderson
- "He's versatile."
- Day said Henderson can run between the tackles, hit a home run, block, and catch the ball out of the backfield.
- "He's shown to have the ability" to be an all-around back. "That makes him unique.
On watching Indiana and Michigan State
- Day said he'll watch that game this weekend.
- "These are good teams that we're about to play."
- "It'll be fun to sit back and watch these two teams get after it.
On how players are handling NIL
- Day said they have someone coming in to talk to the team about name, image and likeness.
- Day notes that the players have to pay taxes now.
- "It's still a learning process."
- Day said NIL has benefitted "significantly, a few." Day said for others it's helped "some," and for some it has had a minimal effect.
On heading into the season
- "We've got a lot of positive vibes."
- Holtmann praised the football team: "How good is our football team looking right now?"
On a tough non-conference schedule
- "I've always tried to schedule a really tough non-conference schedule."
- Holtmann said one of the things he heard from fans when he got here is that they wanted a strong non-conference schedule.
- "It's the toughest non-conference schedule that I've been a part of.
On scrimmages this season
- Holtmann said the team scrimmaged this week and they brought in officials.
- "I love Big Ten officials, I just want to get that on record."
- Holtmann said they have a closed scrimmage coming up, but he's not allowed to say who it's against.
- "Somehow those closed scrimmages, it always leaks out who you're playing, where you're playing and even the final score – so you'll hear all of that soon."
On missing Duane Washington
- Chris Holtmann said they'll miss Duane Washington who, "never saw a shot he didn't like."
- "We don't have anybody right now" who can directly fill Duane's void.
- Holtmann notes that there were some games where Duane Washington was "almost unstoppable."
On Cedric Russell
- Holtmann said the level of play has been an adjustment from him.
- "His head's spinning a little bit, a little like a freshman would."
- Holtmann said once he's comfortable he'll be a big part of that backcourt.
On Jamari Wheeler
- "This little man, he is just a ball hawk."
- Holtmann said "he's one of the finest on-ball defenders and one of the most persistent on-ball defenders I've ever seen.
- Holtmann notes he'll have to grow offensively.
On Joey Brunk
- "I think the depth with those guys."
- Holtmann said in today's basketball you need to have a change-of-pace lineup.
- Holtmann said when Ohio State went small last year they had a really good offense, but Joey Brunk and Zed Key will help their depth.
- "He's excited about helping," Holtmann said of Brunk.
- "He's a big body, and you need that in that league."
On football home games being big for recruiting
- Holtmann said they're 15 or 16 hour recruiting days.
- Holtmann said "they're tremendous weekends" and it's a great way to showcase the university as a whole.