Wednesday Skull Session

By D.J. Byrnes on June 11, 2014 at 6:00 am
That Team Up North vs. Ohio State, 1901 via The Ohio State Library

Yesterday, Worthington Kilbourne's Liam McCullough, a long snapper, became the sixth commit of Ohio State's #Elite15 recruiting class.

Long snapper is a position you never contemplate until a ball is soaring over your punter's head in the fourth quarter of a tight game. Next thing you know, your punter is trying to waddle in shit-filled knickers after a loose ball while a 270 lbs linebacker is putting him in his crosshairs. 

Then you wake up on the floor of a county jail cell in a turtle vest and cursing the long snapper's lineage all the way back to his great great great grandaddy, that dumb S.O.B. who was killed in service of the Ottoman Empire.

(Not that I know anything about county jail cells, turtle vests or the Ottoman Empire.)

But thanks in advance, Liam McCullough, for keeping us all out of jail. May we never have to speak your name again.

Here are some 11W articles you might've missed:

IT WAS ALL A DREAM. Grant Schmidt was "the new guy" in the #Elite15 class for a little over twenty-four hours before his thunder was stolen by a long snapper.

But yesterday, Stu Whitney, editor of The Sioux Falls Argus Leader, typed a column on Ohio State's newest offensive lineman, who dreamed of playing for the Buckeyes:

"Several schools thought that Grant could play very early in college, and Ohio State is one of them," [Schmidt's high school coach Kim] Nelson said. "They had him high on their board and are just hoping that they can keep him for three years. They wanted him bad."


Offers started to roll in, but there were questions about Schmidt's upper-body strength (he hasn't yet benched 300 pounds) even after he helped lead the Riders to the Class 11AAA state finals against Lincoln.

"He still has things to work on," admitted Nelson. "But Grant did a good job of going to the right camps and being seen by the right people. He's a big guy who can move well, and that created interest."

If he still has some things to work on, no better person to learn from than Ed Warinner. I think that guy could turn me into a third day draftee if I spent three years under his tutelage. 

THERE'S A MENTALIST INVOLVED WITH THE FOOTBALL TEAM. Here's a controversial #take of mine: I don't trust people who are always positive, gurus or other wannabe-gypsies. (These are the idiots "inspired" by Hitler quotes attributed to Taylor Swift.)

So it was with great skepticism I read this article by the venerable Jeff Svoboda:

For the next hour, Meyer turned over his third Buckeye team over to Tim Kight, who was teaching the third of four classes on Friday mornings in May about “The R Factor.”

The R Factor can be summed up by the simple equation “E+R=O,” or event plus response equals outcome. In other words, one cannot control which events happen in their life, but one can control his or her response, and the final outcome will hinge on the way a person reacts to each situation.

Kight spent the morning teaching Ohio State players the philosophies he uses when working with companies – and now football teams – across the country. His Dublin-based company, Focus 3, bills itself as “committed to organizational culture,” and Kight teaches a belief system of honesty and clarity that works in the business world and should carry over just as well on the gridiron.

Because I'm pretty sure the only thing businesses and football teams have in common is they've been bamboozled into giving tens of thousands of dollars to a guy who uses phrases like "organizational culture" non-ironically. 


RAY SMALL SPEAKS FROM PRISON. It's been a rough go for ol' Ray Small as of late. The former Buckeye receiver is currently residing in a minimum-medium security prison "about an hour north of Columbus" for drug trafficking.

Yesterday, released a jailhouse interview with Small:

"Me and Tress, we had a good relationship," Small said. "I was just a little hard-headed, that's all."

Small was suspended for what should have been the last game of his career, the 2010 Rose Bowl, because he said he had reached 10 points on Tressel's scale of missteps. But he said Tressel had given him a half-point, pushing him to nine-and-half and trying to keep him around, before Small went over the top.


That's probably what I beat myself up most about," Small said. "In college, I had a time management problem, and that was mostly what I would get suspended for. Because Tress, he had seen I was a good kid and he tried to imbed that in me that time management was good for me. And I just (overlooked) it. I couldn't see it.

"I was like, 'Man, I'm only five minutes late, I'm only 10 minutes late, and the teacher isn't even here yet.' But that wasn't the point. At the time I didn't get it, I didn't understand."

"Just a little" hard-headed, Ray? Don't be too hard on yourself, man.

Kidding aside, the entire interview is quality. Ray has a chance to get on the right side of the ledger with society, and sometimes rock bottom in life is the best teacher. His story will be an interesting one to track when he gets out of the clink.

And that half-point anecdote would fit perfectly into Ramzy's classic from a couple weeks back.


THOSE WMDs. Don't blow kisses as a goal celebration unless you want your tongue removed... Yesterday's O'Bannon trial recap... College football is getting its first woman DB... Deadspin's Greg Howard lit up Jason Whitlock... This is how the Spanish train their Tiki-Taka style... Why one man made it his mission to kill 60 known sex offenders... Searching for Dave Chappelle ten years(!) after he left his show... These Gruesome Dollhouse Death Scenes Helped Create Forensic Science...

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