Ohio State’s Newly Named Captains Talk Workouts, Potential Season In Wednesday Conference Call

By August 4, 2020 (3:04 pm)Football

Ohio State’s seven newly named captains – linebacker Tuf Borland, defensive end Jonathon Cooper, guard Wyatt Davis, quarterback Justin Fields, linebacker Justin Hilliard, center Josh Myers and cornerback Shaun Wade – spoke to the media discussing how the team has dealt with new protocols, and their thoughts on if there will be a college football season, as well as if the Michigan game were to be moved up.

  • Head coach Ryan Day opened the press conference with a statement complimenting the steps that Ohio State has taken on all fronts to “do everything we can to create the safest environment possible” when coming into the Woody Hayes Athletic Center.”
  • He also opened by naming the seven team captains for the 2020 season, and said that wide receiver C.J. Saunders was not granted a sixth year by the NCAA, and will instead be a part of the coaching staff in some capacity.

Offensive Captains

  • Fields on the potential of opting out this season: “Getting to the money as fast as I possibly can isn’t really a priority for me … I necessarily haven’t really thought of (opting out).”
  • Fields called being named a team captain a “blessing” in just his second season with the team.
  • Davis said that he has been taking everything one day at a time, and that he is “very optimistic for the season.”
  • Myers said he feels “pretty strongly” that his level of comfort and safety at Ohio State is very high, and that there isn’t much more that could be done on their end. He also said is concern for player safety is small.
  • Fields said there is some concern about when students return to campus. “The things we’re doing now that we can control … we’re doing a great job.”
  • Davis said that the players have been getting tested twice a week since returning.
  • Fields’ said his top goals this season are beating Michigan and then winning a national championship. He also said he wants to show that he is the best quarterback in the nation and win the Heisman, but above all wants to win a title.
  • Myers said his goal for the offensive line is to win the Joe Moore Award, which honors the best offensive line in the country. Last year, the Buckeyes were a finalist, but lost to LSU.
  • Fields on moving the Michigan game up on the schedule: “To be honest I don’t really care when we play them … I just want to play them and beat the brakes off them.”
  • Myers and Davis also echoed the sentiment that they are fine with moving the Michigan game up this season as long as it means playing them. Davis also used the phrase “beat the brakes off them.”

Defensive Captains

  • Hilliard said the team understands they’re going to have to try to keep their distance from other students this fall in order to keep themselves safe.
  • Wade said he has “no second thoughts” about forgoing the NFL Draft and no thoughts about opting out this season.
  • Hilliard said things are different every year, but that this season has obviously been very different to his other five he has spent with Ohio State.
  • Hilliard said he’s very confident there will be a college football season, and that they can only control things like not having guys get sick on their team.
  • Cooper said he feels “like my concerns are being listened to” by Ohio State and by athletic director Gene Smith, and “we feel safe and confident with our leaders and what is going on.”
  • Borland said, when asked what he does in times where he “can let his hair down,” he said he likes to get to the facility before classes to watch film.
  • Hilliard said that being apart from the team for so long when workouts weren’t happening was tough and, despite distancing and masks, just being around the team again has been great for being emotionally ready to play.
  • Wade said that “everybody” in the secondary has impressed him in the offseason. He said the secondary is very deep this season, and that there would be no fall off if there was a rotation back there.
  • Cooper on if the date of the Ohio State-Michigan game matters to him: “No, not at all. The date does not matter.”
  • Borland on being a three-time captain, second in program history, joining quarterback J.T. Barrett: “It’s very humbling, I’m honored to be with a guy like J.T.” He also said a title like that means that there are a lot of extra eyes and extra responsibility on you every day that comes with that title.
  • Wade said he learned from Damon Arnette, Jordan Fuller and Jeff Okudah on how to lead the secondary last season, and that he is most similar to how Fuller led, which was more so by example.
  • Wade said he feels “like we’re not missing a beat from last year, to be honest,” as far as the Ohio State defense overall with Kerry Coombs taking over as defensive coordinator.

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