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Today is Thursday, Sept. 15, and this is your Ohio State Wake-Up Call
First road test is a big one for Buckeyes
There are a lot of firsts for Ohio State coming into Saturday night’s game at Oklahoma. It’s the Buckeyes’ first road game in 2016, and it’s also be their first matchup against a ranked opponent.
So yes, Saturday is a whole new ballgame. Playing at home, no matter the level of competition of your opponent, is completely different than playing on the road.
Ohio State wide receiver/running back Curtis Samuel says there is so much more to prove in another team’s stadium.
“I wouldn’t say it’s easy, but it’s kind of easy going into your own home stadium against a good opponent because you know you won’t have to deal with the noise, the crowd and everything that’s going on,” Samuel said. “You are familiar with the atmosphere, but going into a tough road game, you have to prove to yourself what you’ve got and go out there. Not just the culture of your team, you have to show yourself and what you are capable of doing.”
Different players have different ways of getting through a practice week before a big game like the one on Saturday. For veteran defensive tackle Michael Hill, it’s business as usual.
“I prepare like it is any other game,” Hill said. “I don’t like to hype up the game to make it bigger than what it is. It’s just another game. I have to go out there and do my job to my best ability. I’m really not too hyped right now. On Saturday, I’ll be hyped.”
Even though some veterans are calm and collected before the big game, the coaches are bringing the fire and intensity to the practice fields.
“The coaches, they are coaching differently,” Hill said. “They are coaching a lot harder. They are a lot harder on the young guys because some of the young guys have never been in a game this big in their career yet. So, they have been coaching a bit harder, telling us to go harder and everything.”
This team knows that this may be the biggest game in some of the players’ career, until November at least. Samuel said this is what these players signed up for.
“You just have to let them know that this is why they came to Ohio State,” Samuel said. “They have to understand the circumstance. They knew what they were getting into coming here.”
Dante Booker questionable for Saturday
The Buckeyes may have to face the Sooners without starting linebacker Dante Booker.
In his Wednesday night press conference, Ohio State coach Urban Meyer announced that Booker has been downgraded to questionable — he listed him as probable on on Monday —heading into Week 3.
Meyer on Booker: "Is more questionable now. Didn't do much in practice today."
— Colin Gay (@ColinGay17) September 14, 2016
After starting in Week 1 and recording two tackles against Bowling Green, Booker has been struggling with an MCL sprain and the Buckeyes were optimistic he’d return to action against the Sooners.
Dante Booker won't play today for Ohio State pic.twitter.com/GTewW5GB9H
— Ryan Ginn (@rmginn) September 10, 2016
Meyer mentioned that Booker had not done much in practice on Wednesday afternoon and that Jerome Baker will take his place if he is not able to go.
Torrance Gibson still in long-term plan
With the amount of options at quarterback J.T. Barrett’s fingertips, it’s easy to forget that the Buckeyes actually lost a weapon this offseason due to suspension.
However, according to wide receivers coach Zach Smith, Torrance Torrance Gibson is on track for a return to the program in January 2017.
“We have a plan for Torrance to come back and he should be back in January as long as everything goes to plan,” Smith said Wednesday night. “We’ve just got to stick to the plan and go through the process.”
A converted quarterback, Gibson has a lot of work to do off the field before then for him to return to school and become the weapon that Buckeye fans expected him to be.
Skip Bayless is officially the worst
On his new show, Undisputed, loud-mouth sportscaster Skip Bayless said that a Sooners win against Ohio State on Saturday would be “predictable”.
— UNDISPUTED (@undisputed) September 14, 2016
First of all, with as many predictions this man has made, why does he still have a show? Also, in typical Bayless fashion, he provided nothing to back up his claim, just the routine running of the mouth.
Anyway, with the Buckeyes favored in their first road game of the season, Meyer and Ohio State will take their chances. At the end of Saturday, Buckeye fans hopefully will be armed with more ammunition for their next “Skip Bayless is a clueless clown” Twitter rant.
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