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Why is this news?: Ohio State's Urban Meyer talks welfare of athletes

All the big Ohio State news in one handy place.

Urban Meyer has brought up interesting points in regard to welfare of players.
Urban Meyer has brought up interesting points in regard to welfare of players.
Greg Bartram-USA TODAY Sports

"If I am (Buckeyes defensive lineman) Michael Bennett's family, and we go on a (playoff) run, you can plan on spending $20,000 going to the Big Ten Championship Game, going to the semi-final game and going to the championship game."

- Urban Meyer, via Bruce Feldman, FOX Sports

Ohio State head coach Urban Meyer brought up some interesting points about the College Football Playoff on Tuesday, about the expenses of having a player's family traveling to see them play. As you can see in the quote above, Meyer points out that families will have to shell out a ludicrous amount of money to go see their kids play in college football games. Because of the playoff, now there's a chance that they'd have to pay even more to go to those games.

It's a topic I hadn't even thought about up until now. Parents of the kids playing in the games still have to pay to get into bowl games, etc. Meyer also said that the families of coaches and other Ohio State staff get their travel and accommodations taken care of with postseason games, so why shouldn't the players' families?

"I think that needs to be addressed," Meyer said. "How is that family going to not go watch their kid play? If I was on that committee I would have addressed that first." Meyer told Feldman he estimated that less than 20 percent of his players' families could handle that cost for three postseason trips.

That's incredible, and not in a good way. I have to wonder if the committee had thought of this at all when they formed and met. I for one can say that it did not cross my mind in the slightest. Another interesting take is from Michael Bennett himself:

Asked if he believed that players would put more of a premium on getting their families' travel taken care of or more of a stipend, Bennett said the former: "I think this would be higher up than that because it's a family issue."

"Bennett began his career as a defensive end and it shows, as he uses his athleticism to disrupt the line of scrimmage as a defensive tackle. Blessed with a freakish burst off the line of scrimmage, Spence finished second in the Big Ten in sacks as a first-year starter in 2013."

- ESPN staff, via ESPN

In case you hadn't noticed, ESPN has been breaking down a list of the top 100 players in college football for the upcoming season, releasing 10 spots each day. They asked 32 of ESPN's college football writers and editors to rate players on a scale of 0-10 based on their expected contributions for this upcoming season. Before today, no Buckeyes were listed on it, but that changed as Noah Spence checked in just below the 50th spot, at 51. Spence will be serving a two-game suspension at the beginning of the season, which might have played a small factor into his ranking. Despite this, Spence still checked out at a respectable 7.25 score.

Michael Bennett, meanwhile, ranked 43rd overall with a score of 7.44 as he enters his final season of play. Last season, Bennett led the Big Ten interior linemen in sacks, and was a key part of the talented defensive line play. Though it might not affect his score on this list, he's also one of the best Ohio State twitter follows. So go follow him.

"I just want to go out with a nice run this year and be known as a champion, Miller says. If he were healthy all of last season, the Heisman Trophy race would have been 'a different situation.'"

- Braxton Miller, via Jeremey Fowler, CBS Sports

The Big Ten Media Days have brought plenty of quotable material, and this one in particular caught my eye. Coming off of a surgery, it seems Ohio State quarterback Braxton Miller has a bit of a chip on his shoulder (no pun intended. Okay, maybe a little).

After starting the 2013 campaign as an undefeated quarterback under head coach Urban Meyer, Miller was no doubt a Heisman contender from the beginning. Unfortunately, in only the second game of the season against San Diego State, Miller would go down with a left knee injury. That injury would effectively push him out of the front-running for the Heisman as he would miss the next two games against California and Florida A&M. While he came back and still produced impressive numbers, Miller would finish the Heisman race 15th as Jameis Winston ran away with the award and the BCS national championship.

This year, Miller will look to do the same, both individually and from a team standpoint. When asked if he was worried the staff would be forced to call his number to run 25 times in a close conference game, Miller simply said that won't happen.

"I wanted to go to the underdog team - I wanted to build something somewhere like a lot of the other guys who stayed home at Maryland, like Vernon Davis and players like that. I wanted to stay home and do it in front of my family and my friends."

- Maryland wide receiver Stefon Diggs, via Ari Wasserman, Cleveland Plain Dealer

Ohio State fans may remember when Maryland wide receiver Stefon Diggs was being heavily recruited by head coach Urban Meyer and the Buckeyes, only to announce that he would be staying home and playing for his home-state team, the Terrapins. At the time, some were mildly surprised that Diggs wouldn't want to play in Meyer's high-powered offense, but to Diggs, staying at home seemed to be the best choice.

Of course, with LeBron James returning home to play for the Cleveland Cavaliers, Diggs resonated his choice to stay home with James' decision. "I can relate to a guy who stays home and does it for his family and friends. He made the best decision for him," Diggs said of James. "At the end of the day you have to do what's best for you, and I support any guy who stays home."

Hard to argue with that line of thinking, but it will always be nice to imagine what could have been with Braxton Miller throwing to Stefon Diggs these past few seasons.

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