If D.Johnson says he may come to OSU as a walk-on, doesn't that mean he academically qualifies? If he is qualified, then is he not getting an offer because of where he might fit in this class?
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 1:10:26 PM)
It's obvious it's an academic situation. His options may be limited. He may actually have to enroll at a branch and then transfer in, it's probably unlikely he would get through admissions on his own.
JimC (Jan 30, 2006 1:10:35 PM)
Hi Bill, Any updates on Grant, McDaniel or Peters? How do you see things wrapping up on Weds? Thanks.
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 1:11:02 PM)
I feel positive about Grant, as long as academically he'll be accepted. I think the other 2 are long shots.
JimC (Jan 30, 2006 1:11:10 PM)
Has PSU turned the corner in the Big 10? Their recruiting class looks GREAT on paper.
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 1:12:05 PM)
They have had an outstanding year -- an unbelievable turnaround. They did a great job along the East Coast, especially in Maryland and New York/New Jersey. The other 2 top Midwest rivals in terms of recruiting, Michigan and Notre Dame, are also having outstanding years.
redondo (Jan 30, 2006 1:12:25 PM)
Hi Coach Conley - In their analysis of Vince Young, the pundits among other things are saying that as a potential weakness, Vince operated too much out of the shot gun. and not enough under center. Please explain to me as a layperson what skills get developed by being under center that Vince Young (or others) may be lacking. Thank you.
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 1:13:54 PM)
I think they're talking more about the fundamentals and techniques that go along with playing QB in the NFL, the ability to drop back and set up and some play action fakes that you don't get out of the shotgun. I personally don't think that will be an issue with Vince Young. My thought is he has such a low release to go against the tall DL that you have in the NFL. That's my biggest concern with him.
edbuck51 (Jan 30, 2006 1:14:05 PM)
Coaches have to be running on pure adrenaline about now. Do they crash for a little while after Wednesday, or are they already starting on '07, winter conditioning and spring practice?
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 1:14:36 PM)
There is about a 24 hour crash that takes place. Then, by Friday, you are kicking things into gear for spring practice and the next class and so on.
MacAuley (Jan 30, 2006 1:14:45 PM)
Any needs that have not been adequately addressed? WR? O-Line?
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 1:16:12 PM)
The areas that I feel were not addressed to the needs of the team were the secondary. The loss of 4 starters and the WR position. The problem I see is no so much quantity at DB, but maybe the lack of speed. If I had one fault with this class, it may not be as fast as some of the classes of the past. You can't win in the Big Ten with 4.6-plus WRs and DBs. Notre Dame found that out.
MacAuley (Jan 30, 2006 1:16:23 PM)
Do you realistically see either Ballard or Miller switching fro TE to O-Line?
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 1:17:02 PM)
I think Ballard is the more athletic of the two. Miller is very limited in terms of his mobility. It wouldn't shock me if he ends up being an interior lineman. Ballard could be a good TE or possibly a DE.
ME (Jan 30, 2006 1:17:09 PM)
Do you think Loyd Carr can survive losing to ND and tOSU again this year?
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 1:17:54 PM)
It would be very difficult. They have visit both. It still wouldn't surprise me if there were some coaching changes at Michigan after recruiting, in terms of assistants (not the head coach).
mulder (Jan 30, 2006 1:18:10 PM)
What's with all the focus on and early offers to Michigan guys? Is this a change of strategy?
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 1:18:46 PM)
I think it's just that there are some good juniors in Michigan, which is rare (in terms of quantity). It's always good to make Michigan play defense.
labsbeabmm (Jan 30, 2006 1:18:55 PM)
Some have compared this class to 2002. I don't see that. Is it wishful thinking
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 1:19:26 PM)
In my opinion, very wishful thinking. That class was No. 2 in the country (behind Texas). Not enough five-stars and not enough speed in this class.
Steelerslose (Jan 30, 2006 1:19:45 PM)
Bill, what is the most blatent cheating situation you have come across in college football recruiting? You don't need to name a school, just how much $$ the athlete was given and anything else you could tell us. Thanks.
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 1:20:29 PM)
The most notable was Albert Means. Chuck Stobart who recruited Memphis at that time came back and told us exactly what was going on. It was no secret what was going on. I'm shocked it took the NCAA so long to do something about it.
grimes (Jan 30, 2006 1:20:41 PM)
can you really evaluate a players speed and elusiveness without having him in camp seems tough without direct comparison
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 1:21:25 PM)
If you have him in camp, you definitely know if he's fast enough. You're exactly right on film it's harder to judge speed unless you know the competition level.
edbuck51 (Jan 30, 2006 1:21:45 PM)
Do you think the NCAA is going to reduce schollies to some schools this year once the APRs are out, or do you think they issue some warnings (slap on the wrist), and start enforcement down the road?
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 1:22:06 PM)
I think there are still some unanswered questions about that whole process. I'm sure there will be a grace period allowed.
tj (Jan 30, 2006 1:22:20 PM)
Hi coach....question about a past player. Was Mike Burden as good as he was rumored to be? As you know we only saw him in limited action for one season before he failed accademically. Also, how good could Che Bryant have been? Thanks!!!!!!!
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 1:22:39 PM)
I think Mike Burden was a much better player. He was more athletic and faster.
ME (Jan 30, 2006 1:22:48 PM)
Whats your too early big ten 1-2-3 next year?
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 1:22:52 PM)
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 1:23:15 PM)
Got to go with Ohio State (as long as the defense comes around), Michigan and then Penn State.
buckgrad (Jan 30, 2006 1:24:27 PM)
Hey Bill, final 2 days before signing day, how many hours will the coaches work over the next 2 days. And what is signing day like for the coaches? Thanks
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 1:25:09 PM)
Actually, the coaches will work a little less than they have been the next couple days because the last month has been exhausting. There's no contact at this point. Now everything is waiting for the faxes on Wednesday.
skeelo (Jan 30, 2006 1:25:16 PM)
if there was one area that we should have capitalized in the state ohio this past year what would it have been?
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 1:26:15 PM)
It was a really good year for OL. They got 2 good ones with Bryant Browning and Connor Smith. The disappointment was they missed out on Aaron Brown and never really recruited Lee Tilley, who are 2 good OL. And Justin Boren from Pickerington going to Michigan.
edbuck51 (Jan 30, 2006 1:26:30 PM)
Do you really think shaking up a staff will fix problems at a school, (i.e. Miami, possibly Michigan), or is it just a band-aid on what is a bigger problem? Recollection seems to point to a firing not long after a staff shake-up.
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 1:27:00 PM)
Any time you have to have a huge shake-up in your assistant coaches, the head coach needs to get things turned around quickly.
redondo (Jan 30, 2006 1:27:17 PM)
Hi Coach Conley - Speaking of speed, Coah T hired a speed coach. Does he get evaluated in a very obvious way, namely, measuring the "before" and "after" speed over some distance of the people he works with? What else would go into evaluating his effectiveness? Thank you.
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 1:28:06 PM)
There's no question that Butch Reynolds can run fast. The key is how you relate sprinting speed to the game of football. Football is not only having speed, but also quickness, agility and change of direction. I'm not sure what Butch's role is in those areas.
spout (Jan 30, 2006 1:28:19 PM)
Bill,thanx for the time.Lot of discussion in chat rooms re D.Johnson.Do you feel he will walk-on?How does a "grey-shirt "work and is it a possibility?
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 1:28:47 PM)
Grayshirt only works if the guy gets what he needs to qualify. Academics is the primary concern.
MacAuley (Jan 30, 2006 1:29:00 PM)
Coach - thanks for your time today. One of the other sites lists redgie Arden as a huge bust, but it says that he still has a year to redeem himself. Do you see that happening? Where do you see him fitting in? What do you think the odds of it happening are?
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 1:29:29 PM)
Redgie Arden would have been a senior this past year and was off for medical waiver. His career is over.
edbuck51 (Jan 30, 2006 1:29:38 PM)
Do you think the staff is starting to make some inroads back in Florida which were lost when you left?
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 1:30:47 PM)
Unfortunately, I don't see Florida being the second recruiting area next to Ohio, like it was. The only 2 this year were Walter Dublin from Sarasota and Chimdi Chekwa from the Orlando area. Both of whom were not heavily recruited.
redondo (Jan 30, 2006 1:31:12 PM)
Hi Coach Conley - We see yet again an instance of a player losing out on a scholarship to play football at Ohio State because of academics and hard feelings are expressed by player and coach. Could you walk us through the education process that the staff pursues to ensure the coach and player both understand the academic responsibilites? Does it frustrate the staff that they can't respond when the coach and player take shots that they can't address? Thank you.
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 1:32:49 PM)
The first thing is when a transcript is evaluated by our academic department, they tell us what a young man has to do in order to qualify. The coaching staff in turn relays that information to the coach and the recruit (at least they are supposed to). Hopefully, there is a continual line of communication toward the athlete's progress. When there is a problem, it usually revolves around a lack of communication ...
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 1:33:28 PM)
It is frustrating to a college coach when you're not allowed to tell the entire story. But that's the NCAA rules and it's also not right to throw a kid under the bus.
grover (Jan 30, 2006 1:33:50 PM)
Who would your early offers be in Ohio for 2007.
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 1:34:23 PM)
The top guy, obviously, is Ben Martin from LaSalle and maybe the Devon Torrence kid from Canton South. Those may be the only 2 I'm sure about today.
buckgrad (Jan 30, 2006 1:34:41 PM)
Bill we have talked before about the ones that got away (Jarrett, Davis) can you think of a time that we really stole one from another school at the last second? Thanks
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 1:35:21 PM)
Obviously, the Na'il Diggs story is apparent. He had signed with USC and they demanded the letter back so he could look elsewhere after they fired the sister's boyfriend who was the head basketball coach there. ...
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 1:35:48 PM)
LeCharles Bentley, we ended up coming back on him and got him to change his mind.
grover (Jan 30, 2006 1:35:54 PM)
Tressel offered Jamario O'Neal as a sophomore. Will we ever see that happen again?
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 1:36:34 PM)
You very well could see that happen. If a young man has tremendous speed and athletic ability, it probably will happen -- especially if he comes to camp and demonstrates his abilities.
edbuck51 (Jan 30, 2006 1:37:08 PM)
Is there a dramatic difference in payscale between a college and professional assistant coach, or is it primarily about prestige? Seemingly a pro assistant would put in more hours (be away from family more). I'm asking out of curiousity about what might go in to Vrabel's decision when he choses where to go after he's done playing.
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 1:39:06 PM)
Actually, in terms of finances, the pros pay better than the colleges, with the exception of the coordinators. College coaches put in more time than pro coaches and are away from home a lot more. It's much more of a family sacrifice for a college coach. Once a pro season is over, there is no recruiting or public relations agenda for the university. There are 10-12 speaking gigs/golf events/etc. for college coaches. Pro coaches work tremendous hours during their season, not as much in the off-season. Great question.
skeelo (Jan 30, 2006 1:39:20 PM)
at one time you said tim schafer would be an all big ten o-linemen. what strengths does he possess that if he puts it together he could become a solid starter next year?
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 1:40:03 PM)
Tim Schafer is physically strong and really is fairly athletic for a lineman. He needs to really mentally mature and time is running out.
grimes (Jan 30, 2006 1:40:31 PM)
Only saw chris wells in the AA game but he kept reminding me of Adrian Peterson or Eric Dickerson or even OJ(minus the $%@#$) in build, speed and elusivness. Big guy-good moves and fast. Is the tackling poor in those type games or was he just showing what he hopfully will be doing at tOSU for a few years
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 1:41:13 PM)
The competition in that game was the best high school competition in the country. He has the ability, barring injury to be a great player. I worry about all the hype already, however. He needs to earn his stripes.
bullbuckboy (Jan 30, 2006 1:42:54 PM)
Hello Coach. I believe that I have a pretty good eye for judging high school talent. What steps could I take to transition that ability to become a recruiting publisher or coordinator?
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 1:44:47 PM)
I think first of all, it's crucial that you understand the differences between positions when you talk about evaluating talent. The things you look for vary by position. If you feel like you have those talents, I would try to hook up with a recruiting service and share your expertise. At the college level, to be a recruiting coordinator you have to also be a position coach. My advice would be to develop your coaching talents in at least 2 areas.
edbuck51 (Jan 30, 2006 1:44:56 PM)
Have you watched LeCharles Bentley in the pros? He is really becomming a dominant force in my eyes.
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 1:45:38 PM)
You are exactly right. He is a dominant force. To make the Pro Bowl already as an interior lineman is special. He is very athletic for a big guy and extremely physical and very confident in his abilities.
grover (Jan 30, 2006 1:45:46 PM)
2007 QB's Clay Belton or Chris Smith. Whom do you like best?
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 1:47:02 PM)
The thing about Smith is he had a brother who was also a very good QB. The genes may be better for him. He has a great arm, I hear. Belton has great size. We'll see how he does this year, I guess. I'm still trying to figure out why Mike Hartline wasn't more heavily recruited this past year.
DuluthBuckeye (Jan 30, 2006 1:47:43 PM)
Coach, after signing day do the coaches go through a "lessons learned" session to analyze what worked and what didn't? Also, are asst. coaches graded on how well they do in recruiting?
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 1:48:41 PM)
Under John Cooper, we would have a day where we would evaluate that whole recruiting process for that year. We would share ideas and make suggestions for possible changes or what we could have done better. We also talked about all the positives and all the things we did right ...
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 1:49:23 PM)
Coach Cooper would kind of let me grade the staff. Under Jim Tressel, we weren't quite as comprehensive in our recruiting analysis.
edbuck51 (Jan 30, 2006 1:49:30 PM)
Do you think the NCAA is going to make a dramatic change in how camps are conducted in the future?
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 1:50:38 PM)
No, I don't see that happening. Most of the changes are limiting how much the coaches can be on the road and visit kids, etc. Camps are about the only way you can truly evaluate a player any more. If they limit camps, you're basically saying you have to do all of your evals off film and film alone. That's not good enough.
redondo (Jan 30, 2006 1:50:56 PM)
Hi Coach Conley - in the story about Gwaltney leaving WVU and returning to CC back East, the story included a sentence reading that USC and OSU had been back in touch obviuosly inferring that the two schools were still interested in having him on their team. Do you believe that? Why or why not? Thank you.
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 1:52:05 PM)
I really don't think that would be true because that would be an NCAA violation. The only way a player can make contact with another school once he is at a university is if he has written permission from the athletic director. There is no way a college is allowed to contact the athlete when he is on scholarship at another school.
Guest (Jan 30, 2006 1:52:14 PM)
i came in late and prob missed it.. mcdaniel.. what can u tell us...
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 1:52:27 PM)
jabu asks about McDaniel and his status ....
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 1:52:38 PM)
Probably 50-50 between OSU and Florida State at best.
labuck (Jan 30, 2006 1:52:59 PM)
Hello Coach. Coach, when I was a high school senior, if you would have come into my home and offered me a chance to play at Ohio State, growing up the Buckeye fan that I am, I think I would have accepted before you finished your sentence. Can you recall any recruits that were huge OSU fans growing up bleeding scarlet & gray and were as excited as I'm sure alot of us would be? It seems af if D. Johnson would fall into this category.
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 1:54:03 PM)
In this year's team alone, you had guys like A.J. Hawk, Nick Mangold, Rob Sims, Donte Whitner, etc. They were all ecstatic when we offered them a scholarship.
edbuck51 (Jan 30, 2006 1:54:12 PM)
Do you think Justin Zwick will eventually get a look in the NFL?
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 1:55:07 PM)
I think it will be difficult unless he would get some major playing time this coming season here (if, say, Smith gets hurt) or somewhere else if he transfers down.
drunkatvc (Jan 30, 2006 1:56:12 PM)
Hi Coach, thanks for taking the time to chat. Its hard to believe 2006 recruiting season is almost over. What position do you see as a major need for next years class?? Do you think the staff will start bringing in more players for visits than this year??
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 1:56:57 PM)
The biggest concern obviously for next year will be wide receiver. We need to replace Tony Gonzalez (though he's just a junior), Teddy Ginn and Roy Hall. The primary thing we need to recruit next year is more speed, at all positions.
redondo (Jan 30, 2006 1:57:08 PM)
Hi Coach Conley - You're track record as a prognosticator is excellent. Therefore, Steelers or Seahawks? Ehy? By how much? Thank you.
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 1:57:35 PM)
My heart is with the Steelers. If they can move the ball against a great Seahawk defense. Could be one of the closer Super Bowls, 3 points or less.
Hicks74 (Jan 30, 2006 1:57:44 PM)
Hi Bill - Do you have a comparison and preference of Cory Peters and Dexter Larimore ?
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 1:58:09 PM)
I think Larimore is a better player. I think he is more athletic than Peters. He changes direction better. Both need to use their hands more.
JACK BAUER (Jan 30, 2006 1:58:20 PM)
Bill, how do they pair up players as roommates specifically the freshmen?
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 1:59:10 PM)
It's been done differently. Normally, the players request another roommate who they have known at the high school ranks or met at an all-star game or met on an official visit. If the players have no preference, the coaches try and match them up by personality.
ME (Jan 30, 2006 1:59:19 PM)
Excluding any tOSU head Coach(bias reasons) What college Coach do/did you respect the most.
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 2:01:19 PM)
Obviously, Woody Hayes, who was my coach, was the one I've kind of modeled a lot of my coaching philosophies around. I think you pick out the qualities of certain coaches to come up with your own coaching personality. Earle Bruce was a strong believer in fundamentals. John Cooper is the most honest coach I have ever met. Phil Fulmer is a great recruiter. The toughness of Vince Lombardi and a Woody Hayes, again, is something that is somewhat missing in today's game.
Steelerslose (Jan 30, 2006 2:01:31 PM)
Bill, looking back, did you have any concerns that Maurice Clarett would eventually "implode," or did his problems take you and the staff by surprise?
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 2:02:41 PM)
I think there were some concerns early in the recruiting process because he had had some ups and downs at the high school ranks. But he worked so hard his first semester on campus, it looked like he was going to mature. He won the position. Unfortunately, he and his confidantes couldn't handle success.
edbuck51 (Jan 30, 2006 2:03:13 PM)
Offense sells tickets, defense wins championships. We hear it all the time, especially in Big Ten country. If OSU can average over 500 yards, score 40+ points per game, and keep the defense on the bench (all seem like realistic possibilities), can't a dominant offensive team carry a young defense?
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 2:04:20 PM)
Look at some of the great offensive teams of the last decade and put down teams like Purdue and Texas Tech. Not only have they had trouble winning their league, much less a national championship, give me a great defense, good offense and a sound kicking game and you've got a chance to win it all. There's no offense that can guarantee 40 points a game every week.
bullbuckboy (Jan 30, 2006 2:04:34 PM)
Which recruits, past and present, to whom we have not offered a scholarship, do you really regret?
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 2:05:29 PM)
The one kid that sticks out in my mind. Chris Hovan from Cleveland went on and had a great career at Wisconsin. Now playing in the pros.
rbuck (Jan 30, 2006 2:05:36 PM)
Hi coach, Sorry, I'm late. Do you think Larry Grant comes to tOSU, and if so, do you think he makes an impact next year?
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 2:06:12 PM)
He definitely has a chance to be an impact player and I think they have a chance to get him. I'm trying to figure out how they can get him in school when he couldn't get in at Florida.
edbuck51 (Jan 30, 2006 2:06:17 PM)
Do you look for Coach Dantonio to have success at Cincinnati?
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 2:07:12 PM)
The only way that can happen, because of the competition in the Big East (and it's getting better), is that Cincinnati becomes the No. 2 school in the state behind Ohio State. Right now they are still competing with some MAC schools like Miami, BG and Toledo, for some players.
edbuck51 (Jan 30, 2006 2:07:40 PM)
Most around here have Teddy Ginn off to the NFL after this season. Do you see it that way? I think he needs more time to get ready myself, but he's awfully fast.
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 2:08:21 PM)
He is definitely on his way to the NFL. His speed is exceptional and he will definitely be a first rounder.
edbuck51 (Jan 30, 2006 2:08:43 PM)
OSU's speed improvement in recent years has been key. Why do you think they missed out on speed this year? Is it an evaluation problem, missed out on some guys they wanted, or some other reason? Obviously the coaches know the importance of speed.
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 2:09:23 PM)
The speed in the state wasn't as good as it has been in other years. So you have to go out of state, especially to places like Florida, California. That didn't seem to be a high priority.
buckgrad (Jan 30, 2006 2:09:32 PM)
Bill, did the Cooper staff ever bring in a Juco transfer that became a starter? Vance is the only one that I can think of recently? Thanks
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 2:10:34 PM)
Joe Germaine, Jamie Sumner, James Cotton, Kevin Johnson the LB, they all ended up being starters and playing well for the Buckeyes. At the same time, you have to be very careful about JC players. There is a reason they're at a JC.
Conley's Pool Cleaner (Jan 30, 2006 2:10:46 PM)
Come signing day, say we miss out on Grant, McDaniel, and Peters. Do we bank all schollies, or would D. Johnson eventually get one before fall camp?
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 2:10:52 PM)
No, I don't see it.
spout (Jan 30, 2006 2:11:05 PM)
Coach, Hall will be a senior and TG probably going early, but Gonzo will be back,right?
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 2:11:21 PM)
He has two years left, but you need to plan now for his replacement. That's what I meant.
Hicks74 (Jan 30, 2006 2:11:44 PM)
Coach, Is it not worth a try to go after Cumberland or is he more behind grade-wise than Chichester ? Any late surprises ? Heck, we got one with Chichester.
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 2:12:29 PM)
I don't see any real late surprises. It looks as if the staff is selecting the best talented of the poor academic students. You can only take so many at-risk players.
hamiltuckbuck (Jan 30, 2006 2:12:54 PM)
Coach, having been one of the best, is it hard to see kids going to other schools, when you know in your heart you could have brought them to tOSU?
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 2:13:19 PM)
You really never know if that would have happened. But it breaks my heart any time I see a great player go anywhere other than Ohio State.
Hicks74 (Jan 30, 2006 2:13:28 PM)
Can you see Hartline in the two-deep ? His speed at the HS track finals was awesome and at 6'3 1/2 and his perfomance in the North-South game was impressive.
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 2:13:59 PM)
Yeah, I think Brian Hartline could be like an Anthony Gonzalez, only bigger. He still has 4 years left. I'm excited to see his progress there.
Steelerslose (Jan 30, 2006 2:14:02 PM)
Way to kiss his ass hamituckbuck!
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 2:14:20 PM)
Hopefully things will go well on Wednesday!
BillConley (Jan 30, 2006 2:14:29 PM)
I'm going to get going. See you later.
labuck (Jan 30, 2006 2:14:49 PM)
Thank you for yor time, Coach!! Go Bucks!!
dantheman (Jan 30, 2006 2:14:54 PM)