Bumped back a day to cover today’s press access- one more day means even more news, notes, and inanity.
Would look great in the man cave- and Father's Day is coming up...
You (will be) looking live… at a brand new, super hugemongous, HD capable scoreboard in Ohio Stadium in the fall of 2012. In addition to this addition, the ‘Shoe is getting HDTVs throughout the concourses and a brand new sound system. Pluses: great view of hard hits and controversial plays, as well as being able to enjoy the schadenfreude on the other sideline with more definition. Minuses: they still won’t show the plays you want to see, they’ll probably use most of that space for advertising, and the sound system will encourage them to play stuff rather than letting TBDBITL bring the heat.
Meyer’s Musings- Coach Meyer was in front of the media twice today; once with the B1G conference call and then again after practice. And, as surprising as this might be for folks who are used to Ohio State press interviews… he actually answered questions and gave his honest opinion. Whew, lawdy… almost got a case of the vapors.
Topic du jour- Coach was asked about a Sporting News piece regarding his time at Florida (more after the break), and was adamant that any alleged NCAA issues were blatantly not true. His exact quote-
There was no NCAA violation. If you could bold and underline that for me, please.
Done and done, coach.
Also, on the phone- Coach Meyer talked a bit about the process that the team was going through in learning the offense, and said that Braxton has been having success with the perimeter running game. While the passing game still behind, he’s seen that Stoneburner and Hall are playmakers and that John Simon is a “Warhorse”. Hopefully this won’t mean he’ll be snubbed during Oscar season.
This Week In Injuries- In the teleconference, Coach Meyer revealed that Jacoby Boren had surgery for a torn labrum suffered during his senior season, and that the surgery was done now to ensure that he would be ready for the fall. He will remain the #2 center, in spite of missed time. Later, we heard that Se’Von Pittman will also miss the rest of the season with a knee injury. Today in practice, CJ Barnett and Rod Smith were dinged up a bit, and several folks were still recovering from earlier issues and were in limited action.
Boren In On The Truth- Stoneburner was supposed to be on the teleconference, but Zach Boren filled in due to a scheduling situation. The biggest thing we learned, in my opinion, is the reminder that Coach Meyer understands the rivalry with TTUN. You know that cute sign and clock they have (as if Wolverines can tell time)? Well Zach informed us that the Ohio State Locker Room has a non-stop, looping video of footage from 100 years of The Game.
Without Winners, There’d Be No Civilization- According to both Coach Meyer and those who were present, Wednesday saw the best spring practice of the year. For the first time, the Offense won their scrimmage opportunity (third down situations)… Must have needed the “BONG!” to inspire the defense- luckily it will be that much louder in the fall.
Standing Out- According to Coach Meyer, Carlos Hyde is really starting to catch fire; today he was the recipient of an 80 yard catch and run from Braxton on a broken play. The snaps and play of the center was a highlight, as Urban said that it was not a “clown show”. He also commented that Brionte Dunn will definitely see action in the fall due to his work ethic and the effort they’ve seen. One change that was observed today was that Chris Carter was working with the Defensive Line- something that Coach Vrabel had asked about earlier. It seems like a logical fit based on his skill set and based on the uptempo offensive philosophy that the team is shifting to, but it’s also the position of strength for Ohio State… so who knows what will ultimately happen with Big Chris.
I’m In Love With An Older Man- If you haven’t seen new coach Kerry Coombs in action, check this out before you go judging me:
And they won’t let bloggers have press access- By now, you’ve either read or read about Matt Hayes’ piece in the Sporting News criticizing Urban’s tenure at Florida; particularly his inability to hold his star players accountable. Meyer addressed this today several times, and mentioned that there is truth to this, although his preferential treatment of players has always been based on effort (on the field, in the classroom, in the community, and so forth). It’s interesting that Hayes’ attitude about Meyer was not reflected in his earlier coverage of his time at Florida.
Meyer reportedly even had a binder labeled “Bucket List” he kept locked in a desk drawer. Inside was a copy of the Geneva Conventions. While Big Ten gentleman’s agreements were one thing, international treatise and humanitarian by-laws insinuate that perhaps things aren’t always what they seem.
The Sporting News paints a picture of Meyer catering to his star players over his final years and leaving a roster in Gainesville that led to Florida’s disappointing 7-6 season in the first year under Will Muschamp in 2011.
Jim Tressel’s decision to treat quarterback Terrelle Pryor differently than other players helped lead to the turmoil and NCAA violations that upended the Ohio State program, cost Tressel his job and led to a disappointing 6-7 season in 2011.
What is actually being discussed is something that Hayes later admitted in a radio interview, “happens at a lot of programs, if not all.” What is actually being discussed is something Ohio State fans should be familiar with: Meyer’s reputation for indulging star players.
Indignation at Matt Hayes’ indiscretions is more understandable. This week, he’s a symbol of the national media’s carelessness and inattention to detail. By directing his fire at Ohio State’s new coach, he ripped the stitches out of a wound that’s still healing for most Buckeye fans. His colleagues ruthlessly shred the Ohio State program during Jim Tressel’s fall and that hasn’t been forgotten. Now we have a shiny new coach, so it’s natural to be protective. But knee-jerk defenses of Meyer’s time at Florida won’t change what was written, and won’t change the legacy that Urban will build in Columbus.
The fan base’s fixation on the story is revealing of an even deeper problem: we won’t look forward. None of this is progressive. The Buckeyes are a new team under Urban Meyer and Urban Meyer is a new coach at Ohio State. Allowing Arkansas and Matt Hayes to dominate the Ohio State spotlight for a week is akin to living in the past, which would be foolish considering the promise of the Buckeyes’ present and future.
But some refuse to let go, a fact that is proven by fans’ disproportionate reaction to the week’s events. The logic: we lost our coach under humiliating circumstances, so let’s make sure to pile on the Razorbacks when the same thing happens to them. And a member of the media wrote a story tangentially related to and critical of the Buckeyes, so let’s make sure he doesn’t forget he and his colleagues’ misbehavior a year ago.
Was the video camera not available? Heck, even Gene Smith issued a statement today supporting Coach Meyer. Although, on second thought…
Whoo! Pig! Andrew’s comments earlier are dead on: Ohio State fans have been enjoying the ridiculousness going on in Little Rock a bit too much; although, when the national media continues to make connections for us, it’s hard to avoid them. For those of you living under a (not Little) Rock- Arkansas coach Bobby Petrino was fired after it came out that he had hired a young woman he was having an affair with; a selection that disregarded the 150+ other candidates and the fact that he was married and she was engaged. Her hiring came with a $20K bonus; later both she and he were in a motorcycle accident that led to the affair becoming public. Initially offered a chance to stay on under specific guidelines/expectations/punishment, Petrino refused and was terminated. Now, information regarding their phone records are coming forward, including the fact that the young woman in question was Petrino’s first call in the morning more times than not, that he was more than likely on the phone with his realtor during his motorcycle ride, and potential “cell phone pictures” (Ew). Of course, the snarkasm has been flowing as well… from the rally of support to the ride through campus and the thoughts of divorce courts in the near future. Congrats, though, to former Buckeye Taver Johnson… who inherits the Razorback program under this cloud. Good luck, Coach.