Skull Session: Buckeye Players Talk Joe Burrow, Raekwon McMillan Makes Return and Coach Mike Vrabel Participates in Practice Drills

By Kevin Harrish on July 28, 2018 at 4:59 am
Binjimen Victor sprints towards Saturday's Skull Session.

You know football season is near when they're already already selling tickets to a postseason game.

If you're the gambling type and want to bank on the Buckeyes playing in Indy at the end of December, get your tickets now. Otherwise, you can pay asmall fee for a team-based reservation for face-value tickets for if Ohio State makes it.


Word of the Day: Maudlin.

 A LOT CAN CHANGE IN 30 DAYS. Next to his extremely excessive use of hyperbole, my favorite Urban Meyer press conference quirk is probably the noncommittal nature of some of his responses when he's hiding absolutely nothing.

For example, he still won't formally call Dwayne Haskins the starting quarterback for game one even though the season starts in just over a month.

From Bill Landis of

"This guy is very skilled," Meyer said. "The guy behind him is very skilled. If we took a snap today, I made it clear that Dwayne would be the quarterback, but 30 days from now ... a lot happens in 30 days."

See what you did , Urban? You left the door open to an unnecessary conversation with your team about to open camp in a week.

He likes to keep things close to the vest, and I respect that, but that only works if everyone in the world hasn't already seen your hand. And it's especially ineffective when you're actively speaking on how you might get the other quarterback – who's allegedly still competing for the starting job – on the field this fall.

Martell will play, because he's a special athlete who needs to play after a redshirt year. He absolutely has the skill to be Ohio State's starter someday. His talents are tantalizing, and had Meyer dreaming up every which way to use him this year including, he said this week, at punt returner. But that was before Burrow left.

"You jeopardize your whole program if you do that," Meyer said. "That exact conversation has been had 50, 60 times. How much can you really use him if he's the No. 2, and the No. 3 is a true freshman (Matthew Baldwin) coming off a bad knee injury?"

For the record, I'm all for Tate Martell seeing the field for meaningful snaps, but if he ever strolls out there as a punt returner over Demario McCall – especially when Braxton Miller never even got a shot to return punts as a former quarterback –  I'll be frenetic.

 BUCKEYES TALK JEAUX BURROW. Given the timing of Joe Burrow's transfer to LSU, we hadn't really heard from Urban Meyer or any players about his departure until Big Ten Media Days. 

Meyer opened up about the situation during his press conference, discussing how tight the quarterback battle was and how he'll remain close with Burrow even after his transfer.  Burrow's former Buckeye teammates were also asked about his transfer, and how they expected him to do at LSU, and they had nothing but good things to say about a guy they clearly respected the hell out of.


Ohio State didn’t talk about Burrow like he was just another backup. It almost felt like it was still sort of painful to see him not in that locker room anymore. That’s all the more reason for LSU to be optimistic about his future.

“Believe me when I say this because he was my roommate for two years,” Ohio State defensive lineman Dre’Mont Jones said, “you’re getting a dog in Joe. Joe’s no slouch. He’s a leader. He’s gonna take over that huddle.”


“He’s a determined hard worker, very smart. Just me knowing Joe, he’s gonna do what it takes to win,” said Prince, who said he plans on catching as many LSU games as he can. “He’s a baller. He’s gonna make the necessary throws and the necessary reads. I know how Joe works and I think they’re extremely blessed to have a player like Joe.”

“LSU fans should be excited because they’re getting a warrior. A true warrior,” Ohio State receiver Parris Campbell said. “Many people didn’t get to see Joe before at the highest level, but we’ve seen Joe go to work every single day. He’s a guy who didn’t say a whole lot, but is just a down and dirty competitor. Just a warrior.

“He’s gonna have a successful season at LSU. There’s no doubt about it.”

A lot of guys transfer out of Ohio State in search of playing time, and most are never really heard from again. I firmly believe that will not be the case with Burrow. They're getting a good one in gumbo country.

 RETURN OF THE MCMILLAN. Raekwon McMillan's debut season in the NFL was over before it even began last year after McMillan tore his ACL on the first play of his first preseason game.

Now he's back, and ready to start hitting again as the Dolphins begin full-contact drills this week.

From the Associated Press:

“That’s what middle linebackers live for,” McMillan said with a grin, “so I’m ready for all of that.”


“First injury I’ve had ever — college, high school, little league,” he said.

The torn ACL sidelined McMillan for his entire rookie season. He participated in offseason drills this spring still mindful of his surgically repaired knee, but is now more confident it’ll hold up.

“On the field I don’t really think about it much at all,” he said. “In OTAs I was still thinking about it. I was still worrying about whether it was strong enough, or if it was ready yet to take every snap. I finally feel like I’m back to where I was.”

The good news for McMillan is that his starting spot waited for him. He'll slide right on into the first-team defense where the Dolphins hope he can be every bit as dominant as he was when he donned Scarlet and Gray.

Based on how he's moving here, I think it's a safe bet.

 VRABEL NOT TOO GOOD FOR DRILLS. If you thought a head coaching gig would be enough to keep Mike Vrabel away from contact when he's on a football field, you clearly have the wrong guy.

Between Vrabel actively engaging running backs and Kerry Coombs getting worked up during one-on-one drills, Titans practices might be more entertaining than some Thursday Night Football games.

 SATURDAY SCHADENFREUDE. We're over 10 years removed from Appalachian State's stunner in the Big House and the schadenfreude still hasn't gotten old.

As a reminder, a group of Mountaineer players from that 2007 squad recently got together to reflect on what was almost inarguably the greatest upset in college sports at the time.

Those guys will never forget that game, but the best part is, neither will their opponent.

 THOSE WMDs. Fugitive couple found after nearly two decades on the run... Google's shadow force of contract laborers... How a black police detective infiltrated and stopped the Ku Klux Klan... America’s new Ellis Island: A south Texas bus terminal... Bride-to-be kills fiance with steak knife after he invites girlfriend to their wedding...

View 83 Comments