Jim Tressel Making Things Interesting this Fall

Jim Tressel Making Things Interesting this Fall
Jim Tressel

Jim Tressel Making Things Interesting this Fall

Coach Tressel spoke with the media at the Big Ten Media Day about Fall Camp, the Michigan rivalry, Terrelle Pryor, and making camp interesting for 20 returning starters.

By Steve Patterson

Fall Camp Begins

    At the Big Ten Media Day in Chicago this week, Head Coach Jim Tressel talked about getting back to camp and making things different and challenging for the returning players. “It's an exciting time for all of us coaches to get ready to get back at it. It's hard to believe when you look at some of your older guys and think about the fact they've been with us for four or five years and they're getting ready to head into their last go-around and think about all the growth they've had and the experiences they've had.” he said.

    “And we have good fortune from the standpoint of returning a number of guys who have experienced a lot of things, a lot of great things and some things that weren't the way that we'd hoped they'd happen. In fact, we have I think 40 guys on our rosters right now that are entering years four or five and there's a little challenge there in our eyes to make sure that those guys come back into training camp, they don't think it's same-old-same-old, and I know what's going to happen today, tomorrow and the next, so it's a lot of fun.” Coach Tressel said about all the seniors currently on the Buckeye roster.

Michigan Rivalry

    Coach Tressel is now 6-1 against Michigan and attributed his success to strong personnel and the desire of the team to play in the rivalry. “We've had very good players. I think if you look at the last six or seven years' draft boards in the NFL, we've had a significant number of guys that have had a chance to go on to the next level. We've had excellent quality leadership over the course of time. We've been very fortunate.” He said about the team’s players that have made it to the NFL.

    “I think guys that choose to come to Ohio State, a large part of it is they have a chance to play in a great rivalry. It's exciting for them. So the ball has bounced right a few times, we're not afraid to admit that, and it's just tremendous being part of that rivalry, and what's important to us is what happens in 2008 not what has happened in the past.”

Terrelle Pryor

    When asked about Terrelle Pryor, Coach Tressel began with a small joke but mentions his hard work and competitive nature. “August 4th he gets to start practicing. He's going to be incorporated into our offense that day.” He joked about having Terrelle in the offensive playbook. “He's got a lot of things that he's got to build as a foundation. The communication system, the way that we do things, the way that our things work together, but he's the kind of guy that as I've gotten to know him more and more, knowing exactly what's going on is very important to him. He loves to train. He loves to compete. He's got great ability, so I would think that from day one he'll be a guy that you're going to take notice of.”

20 Returning Starters

    Coach Tressell plans on making fall camp a challenge for all the returning players for Ohio State this season. “Well, you mentioned 20 returning guys, and I mentioned that we have 40 guys that have been there, entering their fourth or their fifth year. One of the things we've discussed a lot is making sure that you continue to challenge guys and not have them come into preseason camp thinking it's the same-old-same-old.”

    Ohio State doesn’t want to take anything for granted and the coaching staff is going to focus on fundamentals once again. “So we'll challenge them intellectually, we'll challenge them physically. We'll try to get a handle on where we are. I think an assumption that you make with 20 returning starters is that you're already at a certain level. I think that would be a false assumption. You have to go back and make sure fundamentally we are very, very good.”

    The last two National Championship games have gone the wrong way for the Buckeyes and Coach Tressel believes that the outcomes will be motivating to the team. “I think our guys love to compete. I hope they've learned lessons from those two games you brought up. Hopefully they learned lessons from the other 24 games they've had a part of over the last two seasons, but I think you can't forget about the fact that there are some guys that need to start from square one also.”

    “So there's a good blend, a good mesh of what you've got to try to do in the preseason camp, and the fun part of preseason, it's a two-and-a-half, three-week time where you're really focused all day long on football unlike any other time of the year. Once school begins once you're in spring practices, whatever you've got, X number of minutes and hours with them.”

    “But preseason you get to make a lot of tracks, a lot of work and hopefully we'll make it creative enough and new enough and challenging enough that we can take them from wherever they are now into the next level.” He concluded.

Tags: Buckeyes Football Ohio State
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