Friday, sweet, sweet Friday. And conspicuously this one looks and feels like a Friday. We'll take it. You've got an hour, maybe two tops to kill before you can hit the bricks, right? Whatever this evening's dalliance with socializing and fun amounts to then you're just a sleep away. Game day no. 2. Ohio State's first opponent with a pulse. In the meantime, get ready for the weekend that will be in football by taking in these essential Ohio State reads.
While not a new story to the most devoted of Ohio State fans, the progression of Corey Linsley from suspended malcontent to starting (and arguably most consistent lineman) for the Ohio State Buckeyes has been the kind of pleasant redemption story you enjoy reading when you first power up your iPad or laptop in the morning. Linsley along with Jack Mewhort have been standard bearers for the Ohio State O and should continue to be so as the season progresses towards conference play.
The Columbus Dispatch Bill Rabinowitz A timely turnaround for Corey Linsley
Linsley avoided missteps and, in the spring, earned the starting center job, consistently drawing Meyer's praise.
Throughout preseason camp, his progress continued.
"He's without question, in my mind, the No.1 most-improved guy," Meyer said last week. "(He has) gone from nobody to the apex of our offense. The way we do things, that center has got to be a grown man."
ON SPEED KILLING
Ohio State's made offensive velocity a focus both in spring and falls camp and on into the young season. But in order to call plays and execute them with lightning fast speed, one also has to get them to the players at a similar tempo. Tom Herman's no stranger to thinking at 200 mph and Ed Warinner and Tim Hinton are quickly (no pun intended) getting into the act.
The Columbus Dispatch Bill Rabinowitz Getting up to speed a priority for coaches, too
The man with perhaps the toughest job is offensive coordinator Tom Herman, who works from the press box and sits next to Hinton. Herman had not worked with Meyer or any of the other assistant coaches until this year.
Meyer said he and Herman discuss play-calling options when the OSU defense is on the field.
"That's when I'll ask him to give me the script for the next series: ‘What are the next five plays, and what are we thinking?'" Meyer said. "And he'll start rattling them off."
The coach agrees or offers his preference.
Adam Griffin was an after thought. Few thought the now top backup defensive back would ever make a name for himself at Ohio State. And yet, with his coaches, teammates, and fans, #9 (45, 4+5 = 9) alike. While extraordinarily humble given his upbringing, Griffin continues to be the sort of glue player you need both on and off the field alike to do something really special as a team.
The Cleveland Plain Dealer Doug Lesmerises Adam Griffin eager to make a name of his own for Ohio State Buckeyes
The family had lived it before, when older son Andre played with the Buckeyes as a walk-on running back between 1998 and 2001. But Adam had to experience it himself. And the young guy hasn't run from his name. In fact, he's embraced it.
"He loves his last name," OSU teammate Christian Bryant said with a laugh. "He talks about it every day. He knows what his dad did."
Talking about Adam Griffin, Bryant was incapable of calling him anything but "Young Arch" or "Arch." But he explained how Adam, known only by his bloodlines when he arrived, made plays in the last month, grabbing what Bryant guessed were four interceptions during preseason camp.
Another Braxton praise piece and deservedly so. Ohio State's sophomore quarterback is having to grow up in the spotlight before our very eyes, but by basically any which angle, he's coming into his own in spades. Miller knows he's far from the finished product, but when he is...
BuckeyeNation Austin Ward QB Miller shows flashes
Miller also appeared to have some issues with his hands, as he struggled at times to grip the football, and his receivers didn't do him any favors by dropping a couple of throws that should have been easy completions. But when a ball veers off target or winds up on the ground, the solution might simply be to slow down in the pocket the same things that make him dangerous when he turns them loose on the perimeter.
"I could do better," Miller said. "I would just say I think I was going too fast. I'm making my reads too fast instead of just being calm.
"There's just a lot of improvement I've got to do. I have to get better for Central Florida, and that's what I'm going to do."