Postgame Transcript From Ohio State vs. UAB
Sept. 22, 2012
An Interview With Coach Meyer
THE MODERATOR: We'll open it up with some general comments from Coach Meyer.
COACH MEYER: Pleased with the win. We're 4 0. I like to give credit to the team that we played. They played very hard, UAB. Well coached. It's glaringly obvious we've got to get a lot better or we won't win next week.
Enjoy the win tonight, get back to work. It's Big Ten season. And I might be new to the Big Ten, I'm not new to the big time atmosphere of college football. So we have to be ready for this one.
Q. I can't figure your team out. Would it be giving them too much credit to say they turn it on and they turn it off when they need to? You got down in the first half and scored three TDs in 5:29. When they inch closer, you go 71 yards for a touchdown to seal it.
That hurts I sit there, I'm pained watching it. But we've got to be more aggressive on defense and play a little snuggler coverage. If our corners are as good as we think they are, we have to go play a little man coverage on people.
On offense, our explosive plays, our explosiveness is obviously nonexistent for much of the game. If there's one things we could make adjustments and fix it, it's more than one thing right now.
So we've got a long way to go. The fact is we're a great defense, which is painful to watch. Missed too many tackles today again. And then offense, just a couple of times we're second and long, but we're not a methodically dominating offense. I mean, we're not a very good offense right now. So we have to get a lot better and fast. We're facing a good defense this week.
Q. You referenced a lot about how hard it is to win a game. And you did win one. But going into Big Ten, would you like to have seen something a little more dominating than today?
Q. The blocked punt at the beginning of the game, the pop up kickoff at the start of the second half, where does it hit you in the heart to give up those kind of special teams plays?
C.J. Barnett and Roby obviously didn't play. They're big special teams performers for us. You get a true freshman in there, we have a missed assignment. Just flat bust.
So we can't have obviously mistakes like that. And then the kick you have to react, watch the ball kicked and go. We work a little dribble kick. And we work and talk about this, about expect the unexpected, especially in this kind of game where the team has nothing to lose. And we didn't get it done. So got a long way to go.
Q. With Braxton Miller today, 11 carries, first carry I think was at 8:50 of the second quarter, was that part of the game plan, to not get him hit as much as you go into Big Ten play, or is that just the way the game unfolded?
No, it's not like on the headsets like quit running. No, we have to do what we have to do. And we didn't do it very well. So we have to get better.
Q. Your talked last week about the importance of tackling, how much you worked on it during the week. I wonder, did you see some signs of improvement this week in what you would look at doing in practice this week?
And it's hard to pinpoint one thing that we have to get better at. But tackling is something we'll continue to that's the fundamental that's the essence of tackle football. And we've got to continue to improve.
Q. Which is more distressing to you, the passiveness that you refer to or the stupid penalties, the Christian Bryant taunting, those kind of things, those kind of penalties?
Q. Urban, you talked last week about your conversation with Braxton about making more changes at the line of scrimmage. How often did you see him do that today? How did he handle that, and how do you think it helped?
And we're developing a quarterback as we speak. And it takes time. He's still an elite competitor with some elite talents, but we just have to keep improving. It can improve around him as well.
Q. Without Roby and Barnett, the injuries you've had defensively, do you think that's part of some of these issues, the lack of depth and trying to play a little patchwork with those injuries right now?
But, no, that's an excuse for being passive. Obviously you want your starters in there. But there's some capable backups. But you're seeing some guys thrust into action.
When you saw Shazier went down, you have Roby and C.J. Barnett. So basically C.J. Barnett, Roby, Shazier and Bennett are four starters out. But the quality of the personnel behind them, they just have to play better.
It's not lack of talent. It's maybe lack of some experience. But we gotta play better.
Q. Talk about Rod Smith. You got him touches like you said. He delivered a touchdown, almost delivered another one. Are you uplifted by what you've seen over the last week or so with him?
The other ones were short yarders. We went a couple times just to line up and settle everybody down and went a little I twins, which is kind of what this personnel was built for a little bit. And we pounded, came off the ball a little bit. Still nothing.
I thought we'd come rocking off the line of scrimmage. So having the ability to do both would be pretty critical as we move down to run the little true under center package. And all of a sudden, bang, you're right in spread.
As you can see, we're trying to continue to grow our package of offense. And we're still in that process. But trying to grow is over. Now it's trying to perform.
Q. You were lucky, you put him in there on your last TD drive, you scored, put him in there on the goal line. You weren't reluctant about that.
Q. Urban, are you happy with the progress from Game 1 through Game 4?
Q. What area concerns you the most?
Q. Urban, have you had other times in your coaching career when you've maybe gotten through a nonconference schedule without losing, thinking, boy, we need to improve on a lot of things going into conference play?
So we gotta develop a finely tuned machine. And obviously there's some growing pains. And it's not as easy as I thought we'd be further ahead. It is what it is. We gotta get better fast and get better fast. The good thing there's no pushback.
The guys enjoyed a win in there, singing the fight song. We're 4 0. And, boy, we've got a big one coming up this week. They realize that. I'm loving coaching this team. I love working with them.
I have a very clear understanding of where we're at. Disappointed, but that doesn't mean I don't love the guys. I think they're working their tails off. We've just gotta keep grinding.
No, absolutely, I've been through that's a long time I've been through some teams that you thought would be better at this point of the season. You never try to factor in injuries.
But we have a depth issue here at Ohio State right now, severe. Whenever true freshmen are forced I think we had six on our kickoff unit, true freshmen starting on kickoff. I hope we don't have to do that very often. But it is what it is. We have to keep continue to develop these guys because those freshmen are no freshmen anymore. They're sophomores. They're second year players because they've been in the mix right now.
Q. You've lauded Braxton's acceleration before. It seems that his cutting is remarkable also. He gets a lot of guys overrunning him or grabbing air. Could you comment on that?