Meyer Monday: Nov. 17

It's another game week at Ohio State, and if it's Monday, that means it's time for Urban Meyer's weekly press conference.

Ohio State head coach Urban Meyer met with the media Monday afternoon to discuss the upcoming game with Indiana in Ohio Stadium (Noon, BTN) and last week's snowy win at Minnesota.

Meyer says Nick Vannett has earned more playing time. Meyer said Eli Apple is playing his best football right now and he's going to nominate Doran Grant for all-Big Ten. The players of the game this week: Evan Spencer on offense, Vonn Bell and Joey Bosa on defense, Jeff Heuerman on special teams.

Bri'onte Dunn should be back this week after missing the last five games with an injury.

Meyer said that Barrett is a Heisman candidate. Mentions a lot of his runs are scrambles, though the 86-yard TD run was a called run. "He's a very good scrambler" so they're not using the QB run as a crutch as in the past, and Barrett gets positive yards to keep OSU on schedule at times.

Meyer says he hasn't studied Indiana's Tevin Coleman but knows he's the No. 1 threat on the team. Not big but fast.

Tackling is "much better" this year. OSU doesn't teach to go for the strips, just to wrap up and make the play.

Tommy Schutt is close to getting more time on the field. "I like Tom Schutt but I'm disappointed." Thought he'd be playing more by now but "he has to play better." Reserve DL is not where the team needs to be.

Meyer said it would be tough for a Southern team to come up to play at Minnesota in November just like it's tough for Northern teams to play down in SEC country in August.

Meyer: "I want a real aggressive team that is not afraid to make mistakes." Relates that to the turnovers the team had, says those are fundamental issues they can fix.

On Eli Apple: "Eli Apple is a guy that I like to think is a product of the way we do business." Wasn't what the team wanted when he got here. Meyer calls him "lazy" last year but now he's doing great in all phases. Grabbed him yesterday and said, "This is what we recruited."

Meyer hopes the committee will handle things like taking into account the snow on Saturday because he trusts there's smart people on there.. "If you'd have told is after week two that this would all materialize... we just keep doing what we do. We're a lights-out much better football team than we were then."

Are they one of the best four teams in the country? "No, not right now. I don't want to make an ignorant comment because I just don't know."

Zach Smith coached his best game vs. Michigan State, Meyer said. Good in blocking and making plays. Then the team wasn't as good at Minnesota. "It's the dog ate my homework excuse with the weather..." but Smith has done well this year.

Asked about getting back to Indy, Meyer said, "That was everything. Everything." Thinks that's why the team had a great practice yesterday.

Meyer said he thinks the run defense is in a place where it can handle Indiana. Asked about the depth of backs in the league, he says, "There are some NFL players running the ball in this league."

When asked about Big Ten strength, Meyer says the top five teams in the league can play anywhere. Says it's the depth that separates the Big Ten from like the SEC, but he also sees programs like Indiana beating Mizzou and Northwestern beating Notre Dame.

When asked about fewer carries for Curtis Samuel, Meyer points out that the reason is how well Zeke is playing. Samuel is doing well, though, and mentions his kick return as a big reason OSU went for points at the end of the half last week.

Bonus coverage: Meyer talks Minnesota, laughs at ringing cell phone


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