Ohio State head coach Ryan Day met with the media for the final time ahead of Saturday’s game against Maryland (12 p.m. on FOX), fielding a lightning round of questions.
Here’s a brief recap of what he had to say:
- Day said they have several important offensive metrics, but first downs and scoring in the red zone are among the top. “When you combine those things, everything else comes into play.”
- Day said the thing that keeps him up at night is making sure the players understand what they have in front of them. “Opportunities like this only come around so often.” On the other hand, the leadership on the team and the way they practice allows him to sleep well. “I thought we had a better day of practice yesterday than we’ve had in a long time.”
- Day acknowledges noon games impact recruiting out-of-state players, but it’s not something he thinks about all that much. Adds he prefers noon games.
- Day said they don’t want to look past Maryland, despite being a 44-point favorite. “It’s important to know where you are, where you’ve been and where you’re heading.”
- Day said the blocked punt was “completely unacceptable” and “ridiculous.” Said they’ve addressed the issue, however. “That’s something we were very embarrassed about, as a staff and as a team.”
- Day reiterates that every game has the same importance. “If you lose one of them, they all mean the same. Every game counts the same.”
- “There are so many things we can improve upon,” Day said.
- Without the standard recruiting process, Day called quarterback Justin Fields’ decision to transfer to Ohio State “a leap of faith on both sides.” Adds how their relationship is growing every day now.
- Day said he called former Rutgers coach and Ohio State defensive coordinator Chris Ash when offensive guard Jonah Jackson entered the transfer portal. “(Ash) had nothing but unbelievable things to say about Jonah. When he gave a recommendation for Jonah, that was enough for us.” Always thought he was talented, but the character evaluation sealed it. “I can’t say enough about what he’s done since he’s been here.”
- On defensive end Jonathan Cooper, who missed the first four games with an ankle injury and then the win over Wisconsin with an undisclosed injury. “He continues to be a really good captain, a really good teammate even though he’s dying to get out there.”