Ohio State wide receivers coach Brian Hartline and special teams coach Parker Fleming spoke to Ohio State media today about their position rooms with spring practice coming to a close on Saturday at the annual spring game.
- Fleming said that he hopes to keep the tradition at Ohio State going and that he wants to “keep some continuity” while enhancing the special teams coverage at Ohio State.
- Fleming said that Ohio State was his first special teams job, and that he just wanted a foot in the door as a special teams intern.
- Fleming said that he’s seen impressive athleticism from those in his unit. “Good football players are good on special teams.”
- He said that the losses of Luke Farrell, Pete Werner, Tuf Borland and Baron Browning are damaging for the special teams units because of how much they did in those groups.
- He credited Matt Barnes for being “outstanding, extremely detailed and well-though out.”
- Fleming mentioned Jesse Mirco and Jake Seibert as likely starters, but said that there’s still a battle at both punter and kicker.
- Fleming said that he’s been helping with defensive backs as well to help Barnes and defensive coordinator Kerry Coombs.
- He said that Ohio State just has to keep working at it to bring big kickoff returns back to OSU.
- Hartline said that Jaxon Smith-Njigba is the best blocker in the room and has been having a very good spring.
- Hartline said that the second-year players have been dealing with the loss of last spring. He said that Julian Fleming has gotten some medical issues taken care of. “He’s a special individual.” Hartline said that his size and speed combination are unlike anyone he’s seen in college football. “I think he’s a rock-star.”
- He also said that Fleming has “been operating at 75 percent for the last couple of years.”
- Hartline said that he loves having an inexperienced quarterback because it forces the receivers to be more detailed and exact.
- He praised Emeka Egbuka and Marvin Harrison. He said that both have been doing everything the right way. He said that they work at a very hight level and that they don’t act like freshmen.
- He said that players like Fleming just need to block out outside noise at this point in their development.
- He explained that Ohio State’s personnel this season will be based on which players are the most valuable and that more receivers can get onto the field if they’re more valuable than the tight ends. “Best players play… Our job is to be as multi-faceted as possible.”