Urban Meyer was not happy about the Ohio State Buckeyes defensive performance this week and called a meeting on Sunday for all of his defensive players and coaches to voice his displeasure. Although the Buckeyes escaped and moved to 7-0 after defeating the Indiana Hoosiers on Saturday, their defense was torched and exposed in many areas. The Buckeyes conceded 481 yards that turned into 49 points, and gave up 18 plays of ten yards or more.
The Buckeyes had a 52-34 lead against the Hoosiers with just four minutes left, and still needed to recover a late onside kick to pull out the victory. Meyer was very upset and claimed he is now going to be more involved on that side of the ball.
Meyer refused to use injuries as an excuse even though Ohio State was missing a few key players on defense. They were without linebacker Etienne Sabino, who is out for several weeks with a broken leg, while defensive lineman/outside linebacker Nathan Williams also did not travel to Indiana. Williams, however, is expected to be ready to go this week.
Defense coordinator Luke Fickell indicated that part of the problem may be a lack of leadership because of all the young players the Buckeyes have had to use on that side of the ball. Meyer stated that out of the last ten linebackers they have recruited, only three are still playing because of injuries, transfers, and other issues.
Although Meyer is a spread offense guru and helped the Florida Gators to two national championships with his offensive philosophy, he also knows you can’t just play well on one side of the ball and still hope to be one of the best teams in the nation.
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