ANN ARBOR, MI — Ohio State head coach Ryan Day, defensive coordinator Jim Knowles, quarterback Kyle McCord, and Marvin Harrison, Jr. spoke with reporters following the Buckeyes’ 30-24 loss at Michigan. They answered questions about quarterback play, coaching decisions, the pain of this loss, the defensive frustrations, and what is next for this team. The highlights of everything that was said can be found below.
- Michigan was in a zone coverage on the last play. Deep coverage. Looked like he got hit and they made a nice play.
- “Hard to describe” the feeling right now. Sick to your stomach. Worked all year for this game.
- On the first half, kicking a field goal: “I felt like at 52 yards it was worth a field goal there.” If you don’t get it on fourth down you get no points. Early in the game they punted on fourth down near midfield because they didn’t want to give Michigan momentum.
- On the touchdown/interception involving Denzel Burke that it was called a touchdown on the field and then upheld.
- Watching the last drive, Michigan did a nice job running the ball. “We’ve got to get a stop and get off the field.”
- On Kyle McCord’s play: In this game, you have to win the rushing yards and you have to win the turnover battle. They did neither of those things.
- On what he told the team afterward: They’re gonna keep that to themselves. But it is crushing to lose this game. “There’s a locker room in there that’s devastated.”
- The second-half OSU defense giving up points on every drive: Michigan was able to establish a rhythm and get yards on the ground. The defense did a good job early in the game but it comes down to getting stops.
- OSU had some traction running the ball. “One drive in particular…” You have to win the rushing yards in this game.
- The interception early in the game was not a good start. Will Johnson made a nice play. McCord fired it in there. Have to look at the film and see exactly what happened.
- “We had some good stuff” on offense. They got into a rhythm in the second half. “I thought we were fairly explosive.”
- Have to look at the film to see what happened with the offensive line. The protection was good but not consistent enough.
- Do you believe your team is a playoff? “I haven’t even thought that far.” You’re just so focused on this game. “We have a very good team. We came up short today and it’s devastating.” This team is solid in all three phases. “I do believe this team can play with anybody in the country.”
- Where do you go from here? “It’s just after a game, so it’s hard to start thinking about all that.”
- What did you see on the first interception: The corner made a good play on the ball. He jumped the slant. “My eyes were on the linebacker.” “We put our defense in a tough situation there.”
- What was the locker room like? “It hurts. That’s the only word for it. To work that hard for that opportunity and to come up short, there’s no other word for it, it hurts.”
- The last drive, they knew they had to get the ball moving. Had a good completion to Marv and then Emeka recovered Julian Fleming’s fumble. They knew they’d have to take some shots downfield. They played a cover 2 and he was throwing to Marv but he got hit as he was throwing.
- There really aren’t a lot of words to say in a moment like this. “It hurts to come up short, but we’ll regroup tomorrow.” The worst part is they have to sit back now and see how everything shakes out. Last year they got a second chance at life and they came ready to play.
- What did you learn? Games like this come down to one or two plays.
- How did the missed field goal at the end of the half change things at halftime? Even a chance to get points was a win based on where that drive started. Nobody batted an eye after the miss. They knew it was going to be a four-quarter game.
- What happens now with the 2021 recruiting class? “Our future is not in our hands anymore.” The 2021 class are “my brothers.” Three years where they felt like they were building to this moment but they fell short and it hurts. “This one definitely stings because this is what they talked about when they first got here.”
- The interception is not an idea way to start the game. They scored off the short field. They played a little uphill after that. Not sure if they ever regained the lead.
- It’s been an incredible run with Marvin Harrison. “I’d love to get another chance to play with him here.” He’s cemented himself as one of the best players to come through here ever.
Marvin Harrison, Jr.
- The feeling after the last interception? “Just a lot of emotions. You know at that point the game is over.” Everything you worked for you know you weren’t going to accomplish.
- On the first interception did he attack that one aggressively enough? Have to go back and watch.
- Did you think you were going to pull this out on the final drive? Yeah, definitely. They’ve been in this situation before this year.
- What will the next few days look like for you? “I don’t know. I don’t have an answer for you just yet.” That’s a conversation for family, coaches, and teammates.
- Not sure he’s ever been doubled more than he was today. “I’ve never seen anything like it until today.” They bracketed in the red zone as well.
- What has Kyle McCord been like in adverse situations this year? “He’s going to continue to fight.” When things are going good or bad, he’s going to continue to fight. There’s so much pressure and expectation, and he’s handled it all year long. “I’m super proud of him.” “Before he’s my quarterback, he’s my friend.”
- Why couldn’t you get stops in the second half? Had some guys in position, we just didn’t make the plays when we had to. The guys played hard. “It’s just disappointing for the players.”
- On JJ McCarthy’s play today: “He showed he’s an excellent quarterback.” He made plays with his feet and his arm.
- “Ultimately, you’ve got to win this game.” They were a play short, “so that’s something I’ve got to keep working on.”
- What did you see on the Denzel Burke “interception” in the end zone? “He ended up with the ball, that’s all I saw.”