Skull Session: McMillan's No-Excuse Attitude, Tempo Still Cometh, and Tressel Tipster in Trouble Again

By D.J. Byrnes on April 21, 2017 at 4:59 am
Demtrius Knox on guard for the April 21st 2017 Skull Session

Good news: Didn't get fired at the 11W Luncheon. One day my shadow will catch up with me... but today is not that day!


Word of the Day: Rote.

 McMILLAN ON HIS JOURNEY. Raekwon McMillan came to Ohio State as a five-star recruit. He contributed to a national championship during his freshman year. He will probably be selected in the second round of next week's NFL Draft.

It's easy as a fan to see that as a natural progression of events. It only seems like destiny because of the work Raekwon McMillan (and his coaches) put into his craft. 

His no-excuses attitude is something he adopted before running late to practice during his first winter in Columbus.


McMillan recalled a time when he was late for a workout during a major snowstorm in Columbus. As a freshman from Georgia without a car, he didn't know how to navigate the snow and was late, which earned him extra work in the early morning before the next workout.

He could have blamed the storm or his lack of a ride. But that's not how he operates.

"Instead of making an excuse to my coach, when he asked me what happened, I just said I was late and went on with my day and made sure that it never happened again," he recalled.

This no-excuses attitude was instilled in him at an early age.

"It was a no-excuses tight attitude at home," he said. "The attitude I had was that even if something happens, you can't get frustrated. Go along with it and keep pushing."

Props to McMillan. And not just because of his grown-man attitude, but because he weathered snow as a Southerner. He could've melted, as almost happened to MENSA founder Tom Herman during his two seasons in the arctic hinterlands of the Midwest. 

My excuse for running late is always traffic, which is caused by drivers who are never as good as me, the guy who has never made a mistake on the open road.

 TEMPO RUNNING. Kerry Coombs' job duties include putting cornerbacks into the NFL (check) and matching wits with offensive guru Kevin Wilson on a daily basis in practice.

Coombs has noticed a common theme in the offense—tempo.


“The tempo is different,” Ohio State cornerbacks coach Kerry Coombs said. “The tempo is faster. Kevin has a really good feel and a really good sense of what he wants to try to do to the defense, and how he wants to try to manipulate the defense through tempo and formation. That’s obvious.

“He’s going to take advantage of the things that you give him. He’s not going to try to beat his head against a brick wall.”

Coombs said that the quarterbacks under Wilson and new quarterbacks coach Ryan Day are not afraid to give receivers a chance to make plays.

Us fans love tempo because we don't have to execute or manage it. In our world, we just hold a button and all the robots rush to the line of scrimmage. Why don't more coaches run tempo? It remains to be seen.

At least the local offense will run wild this fall, and there will only be handful of opponents in the country capable of matching the Buckeyes athlete-for-athlete. 

 TRESSEL TIPSTER IN TROUBLE AGAIN. Columbus lawyer Christopher Cicero once tipped off Jim Tressel to some shady (by the NCAA's draconian bylaws) dealings of some of his players.

It ended with Tressel's ouster. And after four professional misconduct cases, he faces permanent disbarment.


Cicero, who tipped off then-Ohio State University football coach Jim Tressel to his players’ memorabilia-for-tattoos scandal, was accused Wednesday of practicing law without a license.

In late 2014, the Ohio Supreme Court indefinitely suspended Cicero’s law license for fraudulently fixing a speeding ticket he had received that would have led to the suspension of his driver’s license.

The Board of Professional Conduct filed another case against Cicero on Wednesday that claimed he improperly practiced law at least four times while under suspension.

The good news for Cicero is he will always find employment in Jim Tressel's crime family. He can also expect a pardon when I ride to the governorship of this beautiful state in 2026.

 BLACK INSPECTOR NOT WRONG. Terrelle Pryor has never been shy of confidence. He also played with a smorgasbord of mediocre quarterbacks in Cleveland last year and parlayed it into an $8 million contract.

He says he should've done better, though.


“I should have had 1,500 yards,” he said. “I’m not talking on nobody else; whatever happened happened. But I believe I was better than that. It was frustrating that I didn’t get more dominant numbers because I feel I can and I know I will. I can’t wait.”

If that happens, Pryor will be in line for a bigger contract than the one-year deal worth $6 million he signed with Washington in March. But he landed in a better situation than he left in Cleveland. He has a good quarterback (Kirk Cousins) and will be surrounded by other weapons (tight end Jordan Reed, receiver Jamison Crowder, among others). Pryor joined them Monday as offseason workouts began.

Ah, the ol' Cleveland Brown fan tradition of watching a former player dominate for another team. At least the Browns offered this one a fair contract. 

 IS THAT SO? And as a Browns fan, know this is the time time of year teams pump bullshit to reporters:

Nothing like throwing speculation onto Twitter that could cost a young man on the brink of his dreams a couple million dollars.

Hooker, fourth safety? Don't let Hooker drop to the Brownies. If that happens, I'm showing up to work Monday wearing a Hooker No. 69 brown Browns banger. Hell, what am I talking about? Ali Baba put that in the mail last month.

 THOSE WMDs. University of Illinois self-driving robot could shape the future of farming... Startup’s juice packs could be squeezed by hand without using its high-tech machine... Defenestrations of Prague... The lies and lives of a professional impostor.

View 93 Comments