Coordinators Discuss UM Challenge

OSU defensive coordinator Mark Snyder and offensive coordinator Jim Bollman met with the media Thursday to discuss the challenge the Buckeyes face with Michigan Saturday (1 p.m., ABC). Click here for more.

OSU defensive coordinator Mark Snyder and offensive coordinator Jim Bollman met with the media Thursday afternoon, the last chance any of the OSU coaches will have to discuss their plans for Saturday's game with Michigan (1 p.m., ABC) publicly.

Here were some of the high points:

Mark Snyder

* On the intensity of this week -- "Practice went good this week. We talked to the kids about keeping it down and to save some of that emotion that they will need during the game. You don't want them to get to a fever pitch too quick."

* On how to defend Michigan, the Big Ten's highest scoring offense -- "We need to go out and play our game. We need to be hitting on all cylinders. We can't make any mistakes. If we do make any mistakes, they'll make us pay for it."

* On whether OSU figures to use its starters in the secondary -- "Yes, we could." (Donte Whitner, Dustin Fox and Nate Salley all missed last week's game due to injury.)

* On whether Fox practiced this week -- "Yes, he looked good this week."

* On the development of UM quarterback Chad Henne -- "They have created balance. That allows him to do things when they create balance. You can't draw a beat on him. It will be our challenge to keep him off-balance and try to make them predictable."

* On UM freshman tailback Michael Hart -- "I saw him in high school last year. He is small in stature, but he is extremely strong. His shoulders are always square. He doesn't come down on arm tackles. He has light feet. He's going to be a great one."

* On how to contain UM wide receiver Braylon Edwards -- "We need to get after the quarterback and don't let him throw it to him. Braylon is probably the best receiver in college football. If you look at some of his catches, he is phenomenal. He has great body control, great hand-eye coordination, great hands, great leaping ability and he runs really good routes. We're going to have to try and contain him."

* On CB Ashton Youboty matching up with Edwards -- "Ashton did go in the game last year and covered Braylon. Hopefully, he learned from that. Hopefully, he's ready for that."

Jim Bollman

* On Justin Zwick's availability -- "We certainly plan on Justin being ready to play. We'll have to see how the thing evolves. He's been working at it pretty good for the better part of two weeks."

* On building off the second half at Purdue -- "It was frustrating that we couldn't get in sync in the first half. We made some things happen in the second half, but we have to try and be more consistent. Hopefully, some guys gained a little bit of confidence. It was still a frustrating loss, but I like to think we can carry over some things from there."

* On who may start on the offensive line -- "The final decision hasn't been made. Generally speaking, it will be the same crew. T.J. Downing should also play. He played pretty well last week. With Steve Rehring, when we decided to take the redshirt off of him, you don't ever want to do that and have a guy not having some kind of role in the game. We have tried to have a situation where he's in the game for roughly 20 plays."

* On what Michigan State did against Michigan's defense -- "The quarterback did a real good job of running the ball until he got hurt. That caused them some problems."

* On the possibility that Lydell Ross could have an increased role -- "Well, this is his last home game in his senior year. He approached this week in a positive manner. He is trying to get ready to play his role in this football game. Yeah, you'll see him in there."

* On whether OSU could have an offensive explosion in this game -- "I think back about the last game I coached at Michigan State. We were playing Penn State and they were not that good in 1997. But we ran the ball against them for 452 yards. You don't ever thing going into a game that that's going to happen. You never know when that's coming.

"I know we need to eliminate the turnovers and take out some of the goofy penalties. How many yards has Ted Ginn had called back on penalties."


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