With no media availabilities this week, Ohio State head coach Ryan Day, offensive coordinator Kevin Wilson and current acting head coach Larry Johnson spoke on 97.1 The Fan during the Ryan Day Radio Show about where the team stands regarding COVID-19, as well as how they are each preparing for the incoming game Saturday against Michigan State.
- Day said he is “Doing good. Resting comfortably here. Been a tough week, certainly been a frustrating week.” Said he’s also looking forward to watching video of the practice on Thursday, meaning Ohio State will be practicing once again ahead of the Michigan State matchup.
- Day said he’s been able to watch practice almost in real time, while also being able to watch film and give feedback. He said the Buckeyes are having normal meetings through Zoom.
- Day said it’s been incredibly fortunate to have a veteran team and veteran coaching staff. “The leadership from this team is excellent … I don’t think they’re getting nearly enough credit for that.”
- More on the leadership: “The leadership that these guys have shown this week, being down some players, being down some staff has really been excellent … It’ll say a lot about our program if we can rally this week after having another disappointing weekend last weekend.”
- On players that have tested positive for COVID-19: “We haven’t had anybody that’s needed to be hospitalized or any type of medical treatment or anything like that. There have been some guys that have experienced some of the symptoms.”
- On watching the Michigan State game from home: “It will probably be the hardest three hours of my life.”
- Day said it’s been good news regarding the COVID-19 testing all week.
- Day said a season like this can expose the character of a team. “Either you’re weak and you give in, you start to get negative and you start to lose focus, you lose motivation. And I’ll just tell you right now: We have a strong team.”
- On the football side of things, Day said running back Marcus Crowley is nearly back to full strength after his ACL tear a season ago. “His knee’s almost where it needs to be to get back out there and start playing again.”
- When asked about Michigan State, Day emphasized that it is a team that has improved every week. “They’re getting stronger and stronger. So I think if we don’t play really, really well and take care of the ball, we’ll be in a dogfight in the fourth quarter.”
- With Johnson as current head coach, Day said he will have those final decisions on Saturday, while Wilson and defensive coordinator Kerry Coombs will certainly have their share of input.
- Along those lines, Day said that Wilson will be on the sidelines instead of in the press box on Saturday.
- According to Day, Ohio State will undergo testing Friday night before departing for East Lansing.
- In the most important news of the radio show, Day said Ohio State will be wearing the all-white uniforms this week against Michigan State after planning to wear them last week against Illinois.
- Wilson jokes he needs to get his foot warmers ready for this weekend being back on the sideline. He also said there’s something about having the ability to look at quarterback Justin Fields in his eyes and being able to talk to him about what he likes in certain situations.
- Wilson: “This is what you get paid for: You get paid for weeks like this. It’s been a challenging week, but I think it’s been an outstanding week.”
- On his tight end group, Wilson said “they’re the best group I’ve ever coached.”
- When asked about sophomore wide receiver Garrett Wilson, Kevin Wilson emphasized that he just has to work on being consistent, because the talent is already there. “He’s still working on consistency to become what I think can be a really high-end, elite player, but his skill set’s really good.”
- Johnson opened up his segment of the radio show by saying “it’s going to be a great time on Saturday for our players and everybody involved.”
- Johnson emphasized that he will not be doing the coaching job alone. “It’s not going to be just me … I feel really good going into the game, because we have a very experienced coaching staff.”
- On working over Zoom, Johnson said he sometimes feels like he’s talking to himself. “You can give information but you can’t get the feel of the passion of the information.”
- On fifth-year senior defensive end Jonathon Cooper: “He’s a very powerful guy.” Johnson also said he’s having a great year, both as a leader and on the field.
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