Skull Session: Urban Meyer Trolls Michigan in the Subtlest of Ways, Stephen Collier Reflects on His Backup Quarterback Career, and Shaun Wade Could Have Already Been a First-Round Pick

By Kevin Harrish on June 11, 2020 at 4:59 am
Brian Hartline is coaching them up in today's skull session.

Today may just be just another Thursday, but it's another Thursday you don't have to root for Michigan, and that's worth celebrating.

Word of the Day: Ethereal.

 TROLLOLOLOLOLOL. Thank God Urban Meyer lives in a world where trolling the hell out of Michigan is good for business, because the dude couldn't even announce the reopening of his restaurant without taking a jab to the north.

Peep that first graphic.

It's a delightful troll, but in all seriousness, we would all benefit greatly if the virus did take on all the characteristics of Michigan football – completely ineffective when it matters most.

 TALES FROM THE END OF THE BENCH. Ohio State fans have an uncanny affinity for players who barely play, and it absolutely rules.

Buckeye fans basically knighted Mark Titus for sitting on the bench and blogging about it, Joey Lane was arguably the most beloved player on the roster last year, and Kenny Guiton got the loudest ovation on his senior day despite only ever entering a game in meaningful moments when Braxton Miller broke himself.

Stephen Collier felt that love too during his career, but that didn't mean it was always easy being a career backup.

Stephen Collier left small-town Georgia for Ohio State thinking he’d push for playing time by Year 2 once Braxton Miller was gone.


“I didn’t really know what I was getting into,” Collier said. “I don’t think a lot of people do."


“While it’s nice to have those perks and that notoriety and that attention from colleagues, peers, women, things like that, it kind of eats at you a little bit, too,” Collier said. “Like, ‘This sucks. I want to be playing,’ because then you see the attention and all those things get magnified when you’re a starter. It’s a double-edged sword, for sure.”


In spring ball, the No. 2 will get pretty equal reps with the starter, but by the time fall comes around, it’s more like 25 percent. Third-string reps are essentially nonexistent. For most, it’s a lot of work with the scout team offense against the defense. If you’re low enough in the pecking order, you might be throwing balls up for the defense in drills. Maybe you’ll get one or two reps a practice.

“That always kind of sucks, too,” Collier said, “because where a starter gets 100 reps in a game and when he messes up one or two it’s not that big a deal, we’re only going to get two reps at practice, and those two reps are the biggest reps of your life.”

I've long maintained that there is not a better job in the world than a backup NFL quarterback, but I can't say the same about college, even if it does come with a scholarship. Collier put up with a lot of bullshit to never actually see the field when he could have transferred at any time, but he stayed and I respect that.

It's not like he didn't have a purpose – the guy portrayed Marcus Mariotta for the scout team and learned Oregon's cutting-edge offense in a few days to make sure they were running plays every 16 seconds in practice. He earned his ring in 2014, he just did it in a different way, and never got the recognition.

 WELCOME BACK! There's not a doubt in my mind that Shaun Wade would have declared for the NFL Draft if he thought he would be a first-round pick, and in hindsight, there's not a doubt in my mind he would have been a first-round pick, especially since Damon Arnette also went in the middle of the first round.

And it's not just me, the very homer blogger, who holds this opinion – NFL Draft knower Daniel Jeremiah is also in the camp that Wade wouldn't have made it out of the first round had he declared.

Biggest takeaway: Wade has some areas where he can improve, but he likely would have been a first-round pick had he declared for the 2020 NFL Draft. He'll have an opportunity to prove he can hold up outside at cornerback this fall and that should only increase his value for the next level. He could emerge as the premier player at his position in the country. Ohio State knows how to develop defensive backs. He's next in line.  

First off, oops! He could and should be a millionaire right now.

But on the purely selfish end of things, my team gets to have a first-round talent for another year, and I'll gladly take it.

 EXTREME MAKEOVER. We've all seen Miyan Williams' shirtless body transformation pics, but it feels a bit more real when he looks like a completely different human being even in street clothes.

I'm gonna be honest, I was quite skeptical when the beefy fellow who runs a 4.73 40-yard dash committed to Ohio State to play running back, but upon arrival, he looks nothing like the running back they initially committed – in a good way.

I'm going to need his workout plan to get my body right for my wedding, meaning I'll need the two-week version, please and thank you.

 NEXT DRUM MAJOR UP. In Star Wars, Jedi are traditionally start their training around 2 years old. So, too, do members of the Best Damn Band in the Land.

I respect the grind, Cameron. I eagerly await your backbend in two decades.

 SONG OF THE DAY. "Sedona" by Houndmouth.

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