With the Maryland game in the rear view mirror, preparations are well under way for the rivalry game inside the Woody Hayes Athletic Center.
Ryan Day took a few minutes out of his preparation on Monday night to join the Buckeye Roundtable show on the Ohio State Sports Network, where he made his first public comments of rivalry week in a conversation with Buckeye Roundtable hosts Skip Music, Paul Keels, Jim Lachey and John Cooper.
How focused are the Buckeyes on beating Michigan after losing last year’s game? Day said he and the team’s leadership committee made the decision not to hold Senior Tackle this week, as they’ve traditionally done on Thanksgiving, in order to focus fully on the task of preparing for the team up north and to allow players to spend some time with their families that day.
“We’ve got so much riding on this game, we just want to make sure the focus is on the team up north,” Day said.
A bullet-point recap of everything Day had to say:
Day said the Buckeyes didn’t celebrate their win over Maryland as much as they usually do because they’ve already turned the page to Michigan. Most of the conversation was about rivalry week. He still wanted to make sure he gave the team credit for the win, though: “Our team fought their tails off, and they put their bodies on the line, they worked so hard to win that game.”
On the Buckeyes spending time with the band on Sunday: “I have so much respect for the band … There’s just so many great traditions surrounding this game, and that’s certainly one of them.”
On the field goal team: “Overall, the operation has been solid.” He described the blocked extra point as an “administrative issue” as the Buckeyes were supposed to bring the tackle over with the ball being on the hash.
On Dallan Hayden: “It’s going to be important that he plays like he has so far in terms of taking care of the football. He’s had to grow up in short order.”
His scouting report on Michigan: “Very, very talented. They’re really good players. Certainly (Blake) Corum and (JJ) McCarthy lead the way, and Donovan Edwards (is) really versatile in what he does. The tight ends are good, offensive line plays very well. Some guys in the perimeter who can make plays, Ronnie Bell’s a very good receiver. And then on defense, you know, statistically one of the best defenses in the country. People have had a hard time running it and finding a balance throwing the ball. So a lot of challenges across the board.”
Day said the Buckeyes have to do a better job of getting lined up after kickoffs and after touchdowns to avoid delaying game penalties.