Ohio State wide receivers coach Brian Hartline and co-defensive coordinator Greg Mattison each spoke with the media on a Zoom call Wednesday to discuss preparation for the Buckeyes’ incoming top 10 matchup with Indiana.
- On recruiting, Hartline said “there is no trail” anymore, it is more so a room that they are in all the time because of COVID-19. Also said he tries not to focus on what other teams are doing, instead looking at what Ohio State can continue to bring to the table.
- Hartline said he talks with Washington wide receiver Terry McLaurin a lot and that he has not been all that surprised on the success that he has achieved. “Everything we see on Sundays, we saw in practice.”
- On the freshmen wide receivers, Hartline said “they’re all studs, man.” He also said that their roles will continue to grow and that they’re doing a great job in practice.”
- Also on the freshmen wideouts: “These guys keep you very, very, very optimistic about the wide receiver room at Ohio State.”
- Hartline said he’s comfortable with the distribution of the receptions to the wide receivers. He also pointed out that the speed of play and length of the season are different this year than any other season.
- Hartline on the receiver room: “They’re all stepping up,” but also said that there does not need to be one specific player besides Chris Olave or Garrett Wilson that needs to pick it up behind him.
- On the drop by true freshman Julian Fleming against Rutgers, Hartline said it was a great learning opportunity that he will learn and grow from moving forward.
- On Baron Browning’s move to outside linebacker, Mattison said he’s done a very good job so far. Also said that Ohio State looks at the three linebacker positions “as one,” and that the team has been very pleased with the play so far.
- Mattison said that safety Josh Proctor is a “tremendous athlete” and a “great young man,” and his speed and athleticism allows him to be played in a variety of different ways.
- On the defense struggling in the second half against Penn State and Rutgers, Mattison said that “tackling was everything.” Also said that there is a goal every week to not allow the opponents to score in the fourth quarter, regardless of if the game is lopsided or not.
- Mattison said defensive end Zach Harrison just has to “keep doing what he is doing” in order to become the next great end for Ohio State, especially with defensive line coach Larry Johnson there to develop him. “Zach’s special, he’s a special young man.”
- Mattison said he believes that fifth-year senior linebacker Tuf Borland is playing “the best football he’s ever played.”
- On Indiana, Mattison said that Indiana is the best team that Ohio State has played so far. Complimented quarterback Michael Penix and the wide receiver room as strong parts of the offense.
- Mattison said he thinks the Buckeyes’ secondary has been really improving. He said the secondary has to play as a group, not just as one guy, and that they are starting to do that.
- Also on the secondary, he said it had its best week-and-a-half of practice in the practices since the Rutgers game.
- On the young linebackers past the veteran group, Mattison said that all of them are showing the potential to be outstanding players.
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