Helwagen Chat: Dec. 22 Archive

Here is the archive of Wednesday's Chat session with Bucknuts.com managing editor Steve Helwagen. He and Gary Housteau each Chat once a week for Bucknuts.com subscribers.

OSUROCKS (Dec 22, 2004 1:04:31 PM)
Hey Steve, What happened with Troy Smith?

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 1:04:56 PM)
A disclaimer from the start: I am comfortable saying publicly I know about as much about what happened with Troy Smith as what was published in today's Columbus Dispatch ...

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 1:05:29 PM)
It is clear that this was some sort of illegal extra benefit situation. I have heard literally hundreds of different rumors. It would be unfair for me to lend credence to any of them ...

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 1:06:12 PM)
Unless and until Andy Geiger, Jim Tressel, Troy Smith or some other reputable source will go on the record with some type of full disclosure, perpetuating rumors and inneundo serves no purpose.

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 1:06:35 PM)
All right, now that we have that as the parameters, we'll go from there ... ha ha.

homesickbuck (Dec 22, 2004 1:06:39 PM)
Curious as to why Worthington is listed as a soft verbal?

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 1:07:34 PM)
That is Scout.com's work. I caught heck a few weeks ago for portraying him as wavering. Now that they've done this, I'm upset, too. Go figure. The kid told our people he is solid. We can get it changed and we'll see what we can do about that.

g0d1am (Dec 22, 2004 1:07:39 PM)
who do you think will be the next commit we will see after the dead period?

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 1:09:20 PM)
Well, sources say Elijah Hodge will verbal somewhere on Christmas Eve, which is Friday. It's either OSU or Iowa. After that, we may not know about anybody until the All-American game on or about the 15th. We will be all over that with Gary Housteau and our Nebraska reporter, Steve Ryan, filling in and posting regular exclusive reports from San Antonio. Wells, McCoy and maybe Gwaltney could fall then.

buck35 (Dec 22, 2004 1:09:24 PM)
OK, whats up with Worthington?

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 1:12:10 PM)
Well, he says he wants to still make some more trips. He is supposed to see BC Jan. 7 and Florida Jan. 21. He told us the last time we talked to him he is solid to Ohio State. He's just taking trips to enjoy himself ... and hedge in case OSU goes on some type of probation between now and Feb. 2.

buck35 (Dec 22, 2004 1:12:28 PM)
U of M keeps racking up four star recruits in December and OSU is waiting for the AA game to see if they can get lucky and land one. Why is this?

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 1:14:16 PM)
That's just the way it has worked out. OSU is in good shape on several great prospects including top-100's Wells, Hodge and McCoy. If it falls their way, it falls their way. I have been somewhat critical of the process this year, but they are positioned for perhaps their best finish yet in the Tressel regime (in terms of closing, if not ranking).

kyle (Dec 22, 2004 1:14:25 PM)
With that Thomas kid now saying we are his coleaeder, I am having a hard time trying to figure out how this class will look in the end. Can you give us you best guess?

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 1:15:47 PM)
My best guess is they will have no problem filling this class. I think Wells is close to a done deal if not done now. Then, they have a shot at Gwaltney, Ashley, L. Wilson, Lenix, McCoy, Daniels, Hodge and now Carlos Thomas. If they get only 5 of those guys, consider yourself served (ha ha).

labsbeabmm (Dec 22, 2004 1:15:53 PM)
Is Lenix being coy?. One day he can't wait to be a Buckeye and the next day he is wide open

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 1:16:56 PM)
Yes, he's being coy. I think he joins the Glenville mafia (er, bad word today, huh?) here at Ohio State -- as long as everything checks out academically. He could be a guy who doesn't sign, but gets his spot when his grades come through in the spring. There is that level of trust, obviously, between Tressel, Tucker and Ginn Sr.

g0d1am (Dec 22, 2004 1:17:01 PM)
Is the Qb from Newark High a D-1 prospect?

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 1:18:44 PM)
I'm having a problem finding my data or even the name of that player. I don't think he is being considered that highly, though. I know he had some good stats.

buck35 (Dec 22, 2004 1:18:49 PM)
Your still giving us a shot at Gwaltney?

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 1:19:35 PM)
Yes, we have some off-the-record intelligence that says his interest in OSU has ebbed back up in the last week or so. He may see more of a chance to play right away and play in meaningful games as the "Branden Joe against Michigan" back in this offense.

Guest (Dec 22, 2004 1:19:39 PM)
Congrats on hiring Biddle, we love him! What additionally will he be doing for BN?

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 1:19:55 PM)
Scribe Ohio asks about Dave Biddle and his role ...

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 1:21:16 PM)
Yes, we are excited we were able to land our own verbal commitment, of sorts. Dave has done a great job on this site and in the magazine the last 3 years. He will take some of the burden off me. At the same time, we think he will help us across the board -- football coverage, more recruiting updates, basketball, magazines, JJHuddle.com and Ohio High. He's just another hand to help carry the enormous load we want to deliver every day.

OSUROCKS (Dec 22, 2004 1:21:29 PM)
Do you think the bucks should look into Raymond williams? I heard FSU is interested.

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 1:21:39 PM)
Ray Williams from Benedictine?

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 1:22:02 PM)
Well, they didn't offer him last year before he was implicated in somebody's death. I doubt they are interested in him now.

GVille4Sho (Dec 22, 2004 1:22:08 PM)
Steve, whats your gut feeling on Carlos Thomas??

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 1:22:51 PM)
Today, it sounds like 50-50. Like some of the posters said if Saban leaves LSU, you have to think that tips it to OSU. He is a southern kid, so give LSU a two touchdown advantage. They need to hit a home run with his visit Jan. 7.

osufan25 (Dec 22, 2004 1:22:56 PM)
Hi Steve, Is there any chance that OSU gets back in on Ringer?

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 1:23:03 PM)
No, I think that ship has sailed.

GVille4Sho (Dec 22, 2004 1:23:07 PM)
All has been quiet lately with Rico McCoy, how do you feel he will turn out, and Alex Daniels as well??

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 1:24:58 PM)
McCoy is OSU or Tennessee. I like OSU's chances, although he is now good friends with Mathis. he and Worthington and others here are tight as well. Daniels doesn't seem to be in any kind of hurry to decide. I think that will come down to OSU and Oklahoma. I'm not sure he was that impressed with his Okla. visit, though. Some have said he is looking for a reason not to go to OSU. I don't know about that, but he is taking his time with this and there is no problem with that.

Seabus (Dec 22, 2004 1:25:08 PM)
Steve, hey there, happy holidays!!! Nice addition with Biddle. Hey, my view on recruiting currently is that the defensive linemen left are the most important guys following an RB. That makes Wilson my #2 most important recruit. How would you play his recruitment from here on out if you were advising Coach T??

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 1:27:08 PM)
I would agree. I think they need an impact OLB, whether it's McCoy, Daniels, Hodge or Lenix. Two would be great. But, certainly, pile movers up front are huge. Wilson is a key guy, as is Ashley. Just stay on him. Akron is only 2 hours away, so there is no excuse. They need to use every available window to recruit him to the fullest extent of the law. Having JT at his basketball game last week was a nice touch. Thanks to my friend Chris Johnson at HoopScoopOnline.com for helping us break that development as it happened.

12bucks (Dec 22, 2004 1:27:13 PM)
So did Troy sell a ring or not?

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 1:28:04 PM)
The paper says he is not the player involved in the ring sale. My feeling is if they know it's not Troy, they may know who it is. If it's a current player, we would probably know who it was. It is legal for former players to sell those rings.

homesickbuck (Dec 22, 2004 1:28:11 PM)
What are your thoughts on Russell(kid form Georgia). Why is Duke and Furman the only other schools to offer him?

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 1:29:34 PM)
This is a Mel Tucker special, kind of like Malcolm Jenkins. He had him in camp, liked what he saw and offered him. Russell is also a nice hedge, like Guilford was in 2003. He can also play RB if need be until they get the numbers there back up.

osufan25 (Dec 22, 2004 1:29:53 PM)
Steve, I have heard nothing on John stewart for some time now. Is he completely out of the picture?

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 1:30:17 PM)
Yes, we've tried to reach him to no avail. But all reports I've read for the last few weeks show he is not visiting OSU.

buck35 (Dec 22, 2004 1:30:23 PM)
Assuming numbers on these guys are accurate. I like this Thomas kids speed. I think that is the difference between the way the team started and then finished. Speed!

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 1:30:58 PM)
Definitely, they played much faster at the end than they did at the beginning. Youboty, Gonzalez and Ginn, among others, came to the forefront.

SweaterVest (Dec 22, 2004 1:31:02 PM)
Happy Holidays to all....

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 1:31:07 PM)
And back at you!

wells20 (Dec 22, 2004 1:31:12 PM)
Steve, I graduated from OSU in 1992, times when UF, FSU, and UM where going through their rashes of problems. I lost all respect for the Florida programs and still have none (I give respect in regards to on field performances). As an alumnit I fear OSU is now considered on of those 'bad' or 'out of control' programs? I don't always care what others think, but all of the issues from Coops last days to now look terrible for the character of OSU. How does the Athletic Dept. get back it's respect?

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 1:34:08 PM)
The athletes need to take ownership of the situation and have respect for their coaches and the guys seated next to them and keep their noses clean. The Dispatch ran the timeline today. Just in 2004, you've had Irizarry/Guilford, Trapasso, Joe, O'Brien, more Clarett, the ESPN series and more. It's a wide variety of stuff, but it's these individuals who are to blame for their behavior. Ohio State is only the platform they all share. They need to preach to these kids that they have to uphold the reputation of the family at all times. And they need to start getting rid of guys who show a pattern of not being able to do that.

kyle (Dec 22, 2004 1:34:30 PM)
"off-the-record intelligence" in this chat? Can you give us OSUs chance with this Gwaltney kid?

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 1:34:51 PM)
Probably better than 33 percent. But he is still considering WVU and USC, no doubt.

Joe (Dec 22, 2004 1:34:54 PM)
What are the individual % chances of signing Wells, Gwaltney, Ashley, Wilson, Lenix, McCoy, Daniels, Hodge, and Thomas?

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 1:36:01 PM)
Wells 90 percent (if not higher), Gwaltney 40 percent, Ashley 65 percent, Wilson 70 percent, Lenix 90 percent (if not higher), McCoy 55 percent, Daniels 50 percent, Hodge 50 percent, Thomas 50 percent.

labsbeabmm (Dec 22, 2004 1:36:15 PM)
The longer a kid vaccilates the less I'm sure it is a kid who will be great. Maybe I'm too harsh but I see it as a character flaw.

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 1:36:45 PM)
There may be some validity to that. Which of the kids who have had the most drama have come through? I don't know I'd have to go through the years and look.

buck35 (Dec 22, 2004 1:36:52 PM)
Does JT ever ask former or current players to go on in home recruiting visits with him? How big would that be to have Eddie George or Orlando Pace walk in your front door?

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 1:37:47 PM)
That's not legal. Only the coaches can represent the school in recruiting in any kind of official capacity. Legends like that can "brush" into prospects on school visits, etc. But it is not to be orchestrated in any way. A lot of times they'll see those types in the weight room, etc. if they come in during the summer.

SweaterVest (Dec 22, 2004 1:37:58 PM)
Doomsday Scenario: McCoy to Rocky Top, Wells to GTech, Gwaltney to USC, Ashley to Minnesota, PSU, or USC, Daniels to the Sooners: Then what does the coaching staff do: Is there any sort of contingency plan for another tier of recruits?

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 1:38:37 PM)
Not that I'm aware of. I don't see that happening, though. They will get at least 5 of the guys I mentioned above and that will be considered a good finish.

threedays (Dec 22, 2004 1:38:52 PM)
Do you really think JT will use Boeckman if JZ goes down... it makes no sense to do so.... I think what he says and what he would do are two different things in this case

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 1:40:51 PM)
Here's a thought (and I'm sure Tressel will address this further as the week goes on): If it happens early in the game, they'll probably play Boeckman the rest of the way. If it happens late, they should use a contingency plan with a walk-on or Ginn (former prep QB) or somebody else. Think about it this way: If it happens in the first quarter, the experience Boeckman would get by playing 3 quarters of this game and throwing 20-25 balls would be WORTH burning the year. It would. He could still redshirt next year if possible, too, and be back on track.

threedays (Dec 22, 2004 1:41:20 PM)
Do you think we have the potential for a top 5 class if Worthington still comes... and we get Wells... With or without Gwaltney I think we are certainly top 10 wouldn't you say?

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 1:42:06 PM)
They need to firm Worthington and get one more top-100 guy to be almost assured of a top-10 finish. If they get McCoy, Hodge, Wells and/or Gwaltney to go with Worthington, it's top-five if not top-two or three.

buck35 (Dec 22, 2004 1:42:13 PM)
The bucks should pass on Daniels. He seems high maint. you either want to be a BUCK or you dont. Your from Ohio for christ sake.

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 1:43:11 PM)
Well put ... 3 days from JC's birthday (ha ha). Seriously, give the kid some space. He showed me against Avon Lake he's a nice ball player. I think his mom is worried about problems he may have staying in his hometown. As we can see, that is a concern.

Grand PooBah (Dec 22, 2004 1:43:26 PM)
Sorry if this was asked but everything we hear sounds like Mo Wells is a DONE deal. Do you have any inside scoop?

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 1:44:05 PM)
I hear all kinds of things, nothing concrete where I can blare "Wells is secret verbal to OSU" and stand behind, though. Just some rumblings that this is where he'll end up. We'll know for sure on 1/15 I guess.

jrd (Dec 22, 2004 1:44:16 PM)
i am sure this has been asked... any news on what troy did?

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 1:47:18 PM)
Yep, you'll read in the transcript, I'm not speculating any of that here. I've heard the same 2,000 rumors everybody else has (and Geiger alluded to as well). The paper makes it sound like it's nothing serious, although they say for the second day he could miss the first game of next year, which is Miami, Ohio (I can hear Keels now " .... and Miami University has DONE IT! ... The Redhawks have upset No. 5-ranked Ohio State 20-17 today at Ohio Stadium!" Lachey: "Paul this is unbelievable ... I never thought I'd live to see this." Real big ha ha).

Grand PooBah (Dec 22, 2004 1:47:38 PM)
Is Carlos Thomas a STUD? Sounds like we have a great shot here. Are you hearing anything special?

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 1:48:51 PM)
He is ranked top 10 or top 15 at his position nationally, which is good. All I know is the report I read today where OSU and LSU are co-faves. Saban's tenure works in OSU's favor, but the southern school works for LSU.

scribeohio (Dec 22, 2004 1:50:07 PM)
Steve, do you expect Andy to ride out the NCAA and then hang it up? Also, any thoughts/odds on probation?

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 1:51:02 PM)
Yes, that seems like the plan. This stuff has probably aged him 5-10 years over the last 2. It was two years ago this week when everything went awry at the Fiesta Bowl with Clarett. He may be out within the next 6-9 months.

Guest (Dec 22, 2004 1:51:08 PM)
Steve, have you broken down the Pokies on defense yet?? What can we expect from them and how should we go about attacking them with Zwick at the helm??

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 1:51:20 PM)
Seabus asks about the Okie State defense. ...

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 1:52:53 PM)
They play predominantly a 4-2-5, which sounds like a permanent nickel. Really good to combat the likes of Oklahoma, who beat them just 38-35 in Stillwater., Okie State was 70th against the rush and 73rd against the pass and in total defense, no great shakes. really works to OSU's advantage if they can get Holmes and Ginn involved early and often.

witter (Dec 22, 2004 1:53:02 PM)
Okie State will be the "what" best opponent we will have played this year?....1st, 2nd, 3rd....?

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 1:53:09 PM)
Great question ... wow ....

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 1:56:42 PM)
In terms of quality wins, they probably only had 1 or 2 (at UCLA, at Colorado and maybe Iowa State at home ... maybe). They lost 3 of the last 4. By record, they're better than any of OSU's nonconfs. They are nowhere near as good as Wisconsin (early vintage, not late) or Iowa. I'd equate them with Purdue, maybe. Purdue beat some names and midliners (Syracuse, PSU, ND and Ohio State) but did not have that one signature win over a highly rated school. So the order by opponent would be UM, Iowa, Wisconsin, Purdue and Oklahoma State.

osufan25 (Dec 22, 2004 1:57:22 PM)
Steve, Do you think we have any shot at D. Williams, Fred Rouse or Antone Smith?

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 1:59:12 PM)
No, no and I tend to doubt it. Antone Smith (2814 yards as a senior at Pahokee) says he'll visit. That will be the key.

platinum5 (Dec 22, 2004 2:02:01 PM)
Could Everett be the starting corner next year?

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:02:57 PM)
That would be a creative answer, certainly, if something happens to Underwood or Youboty. I'm not ready to write off Underwood yet. Nobody has told me anything official about his status, just rumors.

platinum5 (Dec 22, 2004 2:03:01 PM)
How bad does it hurt us for 2005 that Boone will not be able to go through Spring practice?

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:04:09 PM)
It probably puts him back at square one in terms of learning how OSU practices and the offense, etc. He'll have a lot to internalize in a short time in the fall. The great thing is they now have some experience and depth at OL. Even if he has to RS next year (not saying that will happen now, but it's possible), they should be fine.

platinum5 (Dec 22, 2004 2:04:16 PM)
Why is Tennessee in on so many superstars this year? It seems to be more a program on the way down than on the way up.

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:05:37 PM)
I wouldn't say that. They had a dramatic home win over Florida and they upset Georgia as well. They did lose to ND and fell to Auburn in the title game. But continuity is the key. With Fulmer now there 10 years or so, they have a machine in place to bring in a top-10 class every year. Their on-field results have not been that good over the last 5 years, but they're in the top 10 and represent the SEC South more than their share of times, too.

platinum5 (Dec 22, 2004 2:06:02 PM)
I'm not sure about the decision to RS Boeckman. If Smith and Zwick are back and healthy next year, I don't see Boeckman getting any playing time in 2005. I mean, third string QBs don't see much action do they?

Guest (Dec 22, 2004 2:07:04 PM)
Steve, if Boeckman did play 3 or so quarters but still redshirted next year wouldn't that be of some concern since he would basically have been game inactive for 2 years?

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:07:31 PM)
That is a concern that he will sit on the sideline anyway the next two years and just get thrust out there in 2007. But I like his progress in the past year. He has a tremendous upside and could be a nice force for them as he develops, learns and grows.

Guest (Dec 22, 2004 2:07:42 PM)
I'm late to the chat, sorry if this has been covered. If Ohio St/Coach Tressel imposed the suspension of Smith, then why does Geiger have to petition the NCAA for reinstatement?

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:08:01 PM)
Buckeye Dave asks why OSU has to petition for Smith's reinstatement when they self-imposed the penalty ...

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:08:24 PM)
It's because he allegedly broke an NCAA rule. They need NCAA dispensation to make him eligible again.

osufan25 (Dec 22, 2004 2:08:38 PM)
Hey Steve, Do you see OSU making a run in 2006 to end up with a top three recruiting class with the likes of Chris Wells, Mike Hartline, Aaron Brown and Wes Lyons already showing interest in OSU?

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:09:27 PM)
Those are some nice players. Wells is probably the early No. 1 prospect in Ohio with his size and ability (nearly 2,000 yards as a junior). Too early to say if those are the guys who will be differencemakers in terms of rankings, etc.

37-21 (Dec 22, 2004 2:09:32 PM)
Steve, Lets play "what if", if JZ has a terrific game next week, does he go into spring ball as # 1 QB?

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:11:39 PM)
Great question. My feeling is he and Smith would be bracketed. It's all semantics anyway. The jobs are won on the field, not by who leads the team on the field for the first play. They would compete every day. If one of them is clearly ahead, he'd be declared No. 1. If it's too close to call, then they'd still be bracketed all summer. But Smith has definitely opened the door, just as Zwick did (unwittingly) when he got hurt. When you think back to what JT said when Zwick got hurt, he maintained week after week that Zwick was still No. 1 until it was crystal clear that Smith had won the job. But reliability also factors into this ... and you know where we are today as a result of that.

ToledoBucknut (Dec 22, 2004 2:12:07 PM)
What changes in the offense from the Mich game do you see happening in the bowl game with Zwick now at the helm? Will the production be anywhere to that level, or will we be watching the Wisconsin game all over again?

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:13:35 PM)
Hopefully they pound Branden Joe at Oklahoma State. Hopefully Zwick is sharp and is able to complete an array of balls to Holmes, Ginn and Gonzo. He hasn't played since Oct. 16, so that may factor against him. They will lean toward running until Okie State takes that away, my thought. Running would also shorten the game, which could be a priority to just get in and get out of there, too.

wells20 (Dec 22, 2004 2:13:47 PM)
Steve, Thanks for a long answer on a long question. Yes, I agree that individuals create these problems and that the staff cannot 'babysit' them. When does OSU take a 'no tolerance' (i live in Indiana, famous line here...ha ha) policy. I don't know what Troy did, but a one game suspension on a team looking for steady QB's doesn't hurt his position too much. Troy is not that far from starting again going into the spring. Maybe going into the fall, but one injury and one QB not getting it done, and he's the man. I didn't like the suspension announcement have reinstatement right along side of it. Again, I don't know what he did, but it gives the 'one game is all i'll get' attitude for breaking NCAA rules.

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:16:20 PM)
They have to be careful and protect his rights, too. If all he did is something small and innocuous then one game is warranted. Hopefully, he will come clean and announce what he did and put all speculation to rest. He looks 100 times worse by not owning up to what he did. No tolerance is great in theory, but hard in execution when you have to face a kid and his family after he screws up. You sat in their house and said you'd have his back through thick and thin. Did you only mean thick and not thin? That has an adverse affect in recruiting, too, when you show a pattern of cut-and-run at the first sign of trouble.

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:16:41 PM)
Of course, the flip side is parents don't want their kids in a renegade program, either.

Guest (Dec 22, 2004 2:16:52 PM)
Steve, defensively how do you see the Bucks going at Okie St. Seems to me if they plug the run and rush the QB it could be a field day for the defensive backfield. Okie St. seems like the perfect type of team for our LB's to have a huge game.

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:18:52 PM)
one sec ...

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:22:04 PM)
sorry ... taking care of some company bizness real quick

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:23:12 PM)
julian buck asks about the OSU defense against the Okie State run attack, he believes the OSU LBs and DBs will excel.

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:25:00 PM)
I agree. To me Michigan had no less than 190 yards rushing in its last 5-6 games before OSU and they netted 71. The Okie State coaches must be having nightmares of Pitcock, Schlegel, Carpenter, Salley and who's that other guy? Oh yeah, A.J. HAWK. I'm sure they'll come up with some creative ways to move the ball against OSU and exploit what weaknesses they see. But this clearly plays to OSU's strong suit ...

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:25:29 PM)
Everybody says their RS freshman QB Woods did a great job in limiting mistakes. They are a big play team with no short or intermediate passing game.

Grand PooBah (Dec 22, 2004 2:25:39 PM)
The Mens BB team is playing pretty well. How do you think we do in the Big 10? Do you think we will see capacity crowds at the Schott or will they still have trouble filling it? Hats off the the Lady Buckeyes too!

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:26:55 PM)
My feeling is 9-7 in the Big Ten. The wins and losses are obvious to me today, but there will surely be some upsets here and there both ways. They will sell out for Illinois at the end, particularly if Illini are in a position to run the table. Doubt there will be many there tonight in the teeth of this storm, but I'll be there to share all the action just for you (ha ha).

Guest (Dec 22, 2004 2:27:12 PM)
If Geiger is out within the year, does Archie become the AD?

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:27:31 PM)
Julian Buck asks if Archie Griffin will succeed Geiger as AD ...

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:29:15 PM)
I asked Archie about this for a magazine story in October. He said the politically correct thing that he has a great job with the alumni association. In many people's eyes, he is OSU's greatest living alum, so it's perfect job for him to be an ambassador. I think BG's Paul Krebs would be another obvious choice, although President Holbrook may have her own list of outstanding candidates.

Grand PooBah (Dec 22, 2004 2:29:23 PM)
Who do you think succeeds Geiger? Any chance Tress takes it and we get a new football coach?

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:30:56 PM)
Tressel may want it or take it, but he isn't giving up that coaching job for anything. That's his passion. I can't see OSU going in that direction, though. The department is an $80 million enterprise that requires 24/7 attention -- just as Tressel's football duties do. He won't leave a $1.5 million coaching job to take a $300,000 AD job.

skeelo (Dec 22, 2004 2:31:13 PM)
do you think we will finally use the over signing allowance this year?

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:31:54 PM)
No, tressel has an aversion to it. One or 2 of these certain Buckeyes will leak out. It happens every year. The only thing I think they may do is push Pettrey back to April. That would open a spot.

Cavball (Dec 22, 2004 2:32:00 PM)
Steve -- not sure if it's been covered yet or not, but have you heard anything about a scuffle between a football player and a basketball player last weekend?

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:32:14 PM)
No, no word about that. Just wonderful if true.

Cavball (Dec 22, 2004 2:32:20 PM)
Steve -- any idea which juniors might pull in an early offer this offseason?

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:33:06 PM)
Chris Wells has already been offered. OSU may go for one or more of the good OLs or QBs early as well. There is some nice talent in this Ohio junior class at those 3 positions at least.

trolley (Dec 22, 2004 2:33:24 PM)
I have heard some pretty funny stories from media contacting reccruits -- can you share any that stand out?

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:34:19 PM)
Marco Cooper was a real treat. At BSB, we'd rotate calling guys. Jeff Rapp called him one time and was trying to interview him. he was asking him all the standard questions about his visits. It was late in the process, when that should all have been common knowledge. Marco breaks off an, "Are you new?

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:34:39 PM)
When Jeff told us, we were all cracking up. Great get, that Marco.

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:35:41 PM)
The new rage is to have your answer system set up like a phone call. The kid has taped himself saying "Hello .... hello?" And you're like, "yes, I'm here, I'm here!" to a recording. Nice work, guys.

Guest (Dec 22, 2004 2:35:55 PM)
Spielman made the comment that other alumni players are getting very tired of all the problems and are thinking of not associating with the program.Have you heard the same?

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:36:13 PM)
yankee pride asks about OSU football alums up in arms about the problems ...

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:36:51 PM)
Right, for many of these guys OSU is their ONLY claim to fame. They're going to disassociate themselves just the same as Tressel is going to quit over all this. It ain't happening.

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:37:02 PM)
They are just frustrated.

tony2246 (Dec 22, 2004 2:37:10 PM)
Okay.....why can't i see anything in the message area?

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:37:32 PM)
When you join the Chat, you only see what happens after you join. That's my guess, I don't know.

Joe (Dec 22, 2004 2:37:41 PM)
How much longer will the Rose Bowl, Big 10 and Pac 10 put up with the invasion by a team from another conference in the "grandaddy of them" all?

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:38:29 PM)
This makes 3 of the last 4 years. That alliance is dead. they need to move to the next plan, which is 1 vs. 2, 3 vs. 4, 5 vs. 6, 7 vs. 8 and then whoever is left over after that, and/or the "plus one" format with semifinals and a title game.

tony2246 (Dec 22, 2004 2:38:42 PM)
Okay Steve....I've had a little problem logging in....this question may have already been asked....but do you think there is any situation that Ted Ginn or one of the walk-ons will go in at QB next week....perhaps near the end of the half if JZ goes down?

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:39:14 PM)
That's my contention. It isn't worth it to lose Boeckman's eligibility for a few plays. Ginn or a walk-on or somebody else can do it.

scribeohio (Dec 22, 2004 2:39:19 PM)
Steve, have you seen OSU practice w/JZ or heard how he looked?

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:39:35 PM)
Nope, all practices closed up tighter than a drum. Tressel said he has looked sharp.

Grand PooBah (Dec 22, 2004 2:39:43 PM)
Devon Lyons did not get much of a chance in 2004. Did you hear any coach speak about how he looked and what they think? Seems like a waste of a year to me for him.

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:40:36 PM)
Yep, just like Jenkins was wasted under Cooper in 2000. he caught 1 pass for 0 yards. But he practiced "up" all year, that should help him.

Guest (Dec 22, 2004 2:40:51 PM)
Steve, Is there any hope of getting back into the recruiting of B.J. Raymond out of St. John's. I realize this senior class is pretty weak, but he's a fine player and could really help us. Any possible Matta connections? Thanks

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:41:07 PM)
wolfbuddy asks about Xavier verbal B.J. Raymond switching to OSU ...

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:41:57 PM)
No, Raymond is solid to Xavier. There may have been talk about OSU after Matta came on, but he shut it down and committed to Miller. Good first class for Miller with the state's top 2 seniors (Raymond and C-J's Brown).

Guest (Dec 22, 2004 2:42:01 PM)
Who's the best prep b-ball team in the state this year? North College Hill? Have any predictions for each division's state champs?

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:42:19 PM)
wolfbuddy asks about prep basketball top teams ...

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:42:47 PM)
I'd say North College Hill and Dayton Dunbar have to be up there. The season is so young, though. Can't predict champs yet.

osufan25 (Dec 22, 2004 2:42:55 PM)
If JT were to step down or whatever from OSU, which I hope never happens. Who do you think his replacement could be? I think Bob Stoops and Jon Gruden have Ohio ties don't they?

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:43:08 PM)
Man, we went through this in 2001 and we get the same names?

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:43:17 PM)
Glen Mason (ha ha).

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:44:14 PM)
I honestly don't know. Maybe Dantonio for continuity sake. Hard to say. All the hot prospects (Meyer, etc.) are pretty much spoken for.

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:44:34 PM)
Guys,I'm going to have to run ...

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:44:45 PM)
Does anybody have a burning question?

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:45:11 PM)
Peace on Earth ...

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:45:37 PM)
as well as 2 RBs, two great DEs, and a couple great OLBs. ...

scribeohio (Dec 22, 2004 2:45:51 PM)
Peace at OSU!

scribeohio (Dec 22, 2004 2:45:54 PM)
What do you want for Xmas?

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:46:06 PM)
Those were posted out of order (ha ha).

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:46:16 PM)
and yes, peace at OSU.

scribeohio (Dec 22, 2004 2:46:25 PM)
Merry Xmas to all BN and members!

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:47:00 PM)
Yes, Happy Holidays and Merry Christmas to all. We will see you later. Not sure about Chats next week. Maybe I'll do one on Friday.

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:47:11 PM)
Maybe before the game if it's possible.

scribeohio (Dec 22, 2004 2:47:36 PM)
Where's Derrik W going? Guess

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:49:20 PM)
I haven't tracked him. Florida or Oklahoma with a chance of Texas

SteveHelwagen (Dec 22, 2004 2:49:26 PM)
Good night now!

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