Meyer: Buckeyes Can Absolutley Play With Bama

Urban Meyer talked Alabama, Nick Saban, Tom Herman and more when speaking with the media Thursday.

CLICK HERE for your amazing Sugar Bowl package.

(BuckeyeSports members get 10% off their entire package)

Ohio State head coach Urban Meyer addressed the media Thursday, 12 days removed from learning that his team qualified for the first-ever College Football Playoff and earned a shot at No. 1 Alabama.

Meyer spoke about the matchup with the Crimson Tide, Tom Herman's pending departure for the Houston head coaching job and more.

  • Ideally, the Buckeyes would be completely healthy entering the College Football Playoff, but obviously that's not the case. Meyer said that he hopes Dontre Wilson, who broke his foot in the Michigan State game Nov. 8, will be able to play against Alabama. It's about a 50-50 proposition right now, the coach said.

    "That's the biggest thing is making sure we're on point mentally and physically," Meyer said.

  • When watching film of the 2014 Crimson Tide, Meyer said they look similar to the dominant Alabama teams of the recent past. He was quick to mention the talent and depth of Alabama's defensive line before mentioning star receiver Amari Cooper and the Alabama special teams.

    Meyer said the Buckeyes can "absolutely" play with Alabama.

  • After accepting the head coaching position at Houston, Ohio State offensive coordinator Tom Herman looks "like someone hit him with a bat walking around here," Meyer said. "A good bat though.

    "I took a chance on Tom. What people told me about him was correct. it started with Chip Kelly. He's been an instrumental member of our staff."

  • When asked about finding Herman's replacement, Meyer said that he keeps a short list of potential coordinators handy and has plans for co-offensive coordinator Ed Warinner, but did not elaborate.

    In his search for a replacement Meyer not only find someone who can be a good coordinator and quarterbacks coach, but someone who can recruit the state of Texas, Meyer said.

    "That's part of the job description is the ability to go get a kid out of Texas," Meyer said, adding that he would rather not have to reconfigure his staff's recruiting territories, but may consider it.

  • Cardale Jones has made about as big a turnaround from an attitude standpoint as any player Meyer has coached, he said. The thing Meyer liked most about Jones' play against Wisconsin was that when he made a mistake, he took accountability for it. That wouldn't have happened a few years ago.

    "Cardale is a great story," Meyer said. "Still in a process now."

  • On Ohio State's 2013 recruiting class, a group ranked the top class in the country by Scout.com, Meyer said he knew the group was good, but wasn't able to predict the success they've already had.

    "You say those names, those are all program-changing names," Meyer said.

  • Meyer said he likes the inclusion that the College Football Playoff offers, remarking that his 2004 Utah team finished the season No. 4 and under this year's configuration would have had a shot at a national title. Meyer did also mention his concern over the stress the potential added travel puts on players family, something he has mentioned since the introduction of the format.
  • The coach did say that the playoff format changes the way he looks at the game as it's "completely different" than a bowl game, he said. Meyer doesn't really even think of it as the Sugar Bowl, he said.


Buckeye Sports Top Stories