Ryan Day

Ryan Day Talks Michigan, Concerns For 2023 Season

INDIANAPOLIS — Ohio State head coach Ryan Day spent 45 minutes with reporters Wednesday afternoon at day one of Big Ten Media Days in Indianapolis. He was asked about a number of topics, including the offensive line, the Michigan game, finishing better than last year, the OSU defense, and much more. The highlights of everything he had to say can be found below.

  • Offensive lineman Avery Henry will not continue playing. Henry has gone through treatment for cancer and is remission, but playing football is no longer in his plans. He will still be around the team.
  • He received a phone call at 6 a.m. about the passing of Carnell Tate’s mother. He has a team that is here to support him. Tate is a pretty private person, but there are other guys on the team who have gone through similar situations. Football has allowed him to kind of get his mind off of it when he’s not in his room or back in Chicago.
  • Carson Hinzman is competing to be the starting center. He has had a good offseason. He will have to earn the spot. There are a lot of things that leads them to believe he will be able to do that.
  • Lorenzo Styles, Jr. understands what it means to be a Buckeye. OSU recruited him as a corner out of high school. Going to Notre Dame was part of Styles’ journey, but now he’s where he is supposed to be. He’s competitive, fast, and has great athletic skills. He’s played in games already so that could lead to him having an impact on the field this year, even if it’s just special teams to start out with.
  • They have more experience on defense than they’ve had in a while. They have to play with aggressiveness, but they also have to avoid the big plays. They are looking at physicality in preseason. In order to be physical, the defensive line has to set the tone and the top guys have to play more.
  • They are excited to have a healthy TreVeyon Henderson and Miyan Williams back this year. They didn’t have that last year.
  • It is still undecided on who their starting tackles are. It’s too early to anoint Josh Simmons. They need to see it on the field first. They like what they’ve seen so far. Tegra Tshabola and Luke Montgomery have also stood out at tackle.
  • Luke Montgomery is in the competition at left tackle. They see things in him that are very encouraging. Everything you invest in him, you’re going to get back.
  • He and Brian Hartline haven’t talked yet about how the playcalling is going to go this year. They’ll talk more about it during camp. Being an offensive coordinator isn’t just a playcalling thing. That’s one of the last things about being a coordinator. The organization and day-to-day stuff is way more important.
  • They felt like if Tywone Malone just focused on football, he could be a high-level play. When he showed up in the portal, they saw it as an opportunity to help the team.
  • They have kept the same mindset they had leading up to the Georgia game. They have done that through competition. They have done more competing this year than in past years.
  • College football is a lot different now than two years ago. “I think we need some help in certain areas for sure.”
  • Where is this program right now? When you lose the last game of the regular season, it’s devastating. Then you swing as hard as you can against Georgia…you have to trust the process. The players and culture returning checks a lot of boxes. They have grown and learned.
  • They didn’t respond well in the second half against Michigan. They wanted to go into the Georgia game not worrying about mistakes, they just wanted to swing as hard as possible.
  • There have been constant messages to his team about the dangers of guns, gambling, and speeding. Those are the three things he sees most often around the country and in Columbus that they warn their players about.
  • Regarding NIL help, he was willing to auction off the ability to make the call for the first play against Indiana this year on the Buckeye Cruise for Cancer, but he eventually decided against it because he wasn’t sure if it would be a violation of some sort.
  • He told all of the early-enrollee freshmen this summer that they are no longer freshmen. He considers them sophomores now.
  • Arvell Reese is very, very talented. He’s still got a lot to learn like all summer enrollees. Same can be said for guys like Lincoln Kienholz and Calvin Simpson-Hunt. It’s hard to just mention some guys and not all of them.
  • The increase in television partners is going to help recruiting through increased exposure.
  • He wants to see how the quarterbacks operate in the competition. When the play needs to be made, do they make it? That’s what separates you from scoring touchdowns and just being close.
  • There is no 51/49 percentage or anything like that with the QBs and starter likelihood.
  • What is the balance of getting Marvin Harrison the ball versus not forcing it? They talked about it yesterday. They can’t ever look down at the stat sheet after a game and see that he only had one touch. That’s not acceptable. They know he will be doubled at times. But the same will happen at times for Emeka Egbuka. You take what the defense gives you but they also need to do a great job of finding touches for your playmakers.
  • They looked long and hard at the Michigan game again to find the areas they need to do better at. The emphasis needs to be on fixing those areas.
  • Kenyatta Jackson looks like an NFL player right now. Listed around 255 or so.
  • One of the goals of the Big Ten scheduling change starting next year was to get as many teams in the playoffs as possible. “I’m glad we still have the rivalry game.” They may have to consider when to play the Michigan game so there isn’t a back-to-back game.
  • It’s worth a long discussion about when the Michigan game is played. Not that they should move it, but they should have a conversation. If both teams are already in the B1G Championship Game, playing at the end of the season could minimize the importance of the regular season, which is his main focus. There has already been some discussion about the possibility.
  • Are you more concerned about RT or QB? “That’s a good question. I’m concerned about both because you don’t know.”
  • Are Marvin Harrison and Emeka Egbuka the best WR duo he’s had at OSU? Nobody has been better, but they need to do it again to be the best. And if they do what they did last year, they may be the best duo in OSU history.
  • Never thought they’d have an opportunity to hire Joe Philbin. They talked for a couple of months of talking for everything to play out. He helps the players and the coaches. “He’s been great for me.”
  • It’s good to have a balance of experience and youth as the analysts. They can be both quality control of players and the other coaches.
  • WR Reis Stocksdale is out for the regular season with an ACL. TE Zak Herbstreit will be with the team but will be held out of football activities. Everybody else is full go, including RB Evan Pryor.
  • Tony Petitti’s communication with the B1G coaches has been good.
  • Inducements in recruiting and the portal is real and it’s out there. That’s the one thing they need to get straightened out most. They need guardrails there.
  • Offensive lineman Grant Toutant has taken a medical hardship.

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