Ohio State Director Of Sports Performance Mickey Marotti Talks Team Conditioning During Quarantine

By May 13, 2020 (12:00 pm)Football, Wyatt Crosher
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On Wednesday, Ohio State director of football sports performance Mickey Marotti spoke to the media over the phone to update on how the team is handling staying in shape and following diets during the coronavirus pandemic.

Here are some notes of what he had to say:

  • Marotti opened up the teleconference saying that this situation has been a “challenge for all of us”
  • “It’s been the most challenging thing of my career, no doubt.”
  • Called it twice as busy as if he was in the Woody Hayes Athletic Center because he has to individually keep watch on all of these players.
  • Said it is a “concern every day he goes to bed” that players aren’t following their workout regimen during quarantine.
  • Marotti said that his message to the team has been that they’ll either be better or worse than they were before they left campus, and it’s their job to be better.
  • Said Ohio State has been using a strength and conditioning app to keep track of what the team has been doing, and that the team can prescribe workouts based on what they are able to do.
  • Mentioned that he is happy to have the three veteran linebackers in Tuf Borland, Pete Werner and Jusin Hilliard to be able to lead the way and relay messages to the rest of the defense.
  • Marotti said the team has been allowed to ship fitness bands to players who don’t have them, which has helped overall.
  • He said the first week or two was just for family time with players. He said that after those two weeks, players started to “bounce off the walls.”
  • Said quarterback Justin Fields was just walking circles in his living room early on in the quarantine just looking to do something.
  • Marotti said he and the coaches preached to the players that they need to stay in a consistent routine even at home. Said he didn’t want them “staying up late playing video games,” and creating bad habits.
  • He said in his career, Marotti has never been away from the weight room for seven days at a time. Called this the most difficult part of his career, while also saying that there are a lot of difficult things happening in the world right now.
  • Said it is really hard to tell how long a team would need as far as time in advance to start the football season. “The longer we have to prepare them … I think the better and the safer,” and worried if there was not enough time, teams might not be preparing their teams safely.
  • Marotti said offensive lineman Matt Jones, who is out in Brooklyn, filled up milk jugs with sand and dirt to use as dumbbells because he doesn’t have any workout equipment at home.
  • Said tight end Jeremy Ruckert built a squat rack out of wood with his dad so that he can train. Both Jones and Ruckert live in New York, so they have had to be specifically careful about the coronavirus.
  • He said an example of a workout that he has given their players at home include pushups, a lot of core work, shoulder press, rowing movement using the band around something in your house, pull ups if possible.
  • Said offensive lineman Nicholas Petit-Frere was attempting to do pull-ups on the outside of his house by putting a band around a gutter, but he broke the gutter off his house. “His mom wasn’t very happy with us.”
  • Marotti said he spoke with some Division-II coaches, and he is using his own experience from playing Division-II football to discuss how they do a ramp-up period, which is something that may happen on a Division-I level this season due to the current quarantine rules.
  • He said that this quarantine that has led teammates to be isolated may end up bringing the entire team closer together by the end of it.
  • Marotti said, personally, he rides an elliptical for at least an hour a day, and that he has read 11 books front to back during that time. Said he had not previously read a book in the past 25 years. He also works out with bands, dumbbells and kettlebells in his basement, and walks and rides bikes with his family.

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