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Crew fans get more on your favorite team
By Matt McCoy
To listen to Urban Meyer's comments to the media on 1/11/13, click HERE:
Ohio State finished the 2012 football season as the nation's only unbeaten team but Urban Meyer admits, the Buckeyes have a long way to go.
"Our mantra is going to be truth," Meyer said. "Truth means exactly (the way it is). You have a good season and there's a lot of conversation about things that really shouldn't be discussed because it's not true. For example, 'Are you guys going to(play for the national championship) next year?'...No, probably not unless we get a lot better...like a lot better."
Meyer got to witness Alabama's 42-14 destrution of Notre Dame in the BCS championship game Monday first hand, serving as a guest analyst on ESPN.
"Fundamentally we are not where we need to be," Meyer said. "The best fundamental team that I've seen this year won that (championship) game."
Since he saw the Crimson Tide up close, Meyer was asked how he thinks the Buckeyes would stack up against the champs.
"I think we're a very good team that could compete with any team in the country," Meyer said. "To say that we can roll in there and beat a team like that...first of all I don't want to speculate and then if I was going to give you an honest answer, I think we have too many holes to fill."
The SEC advantage
Meyer said the biggest advantage Alabama and the Southeastern Conference schools have over Ohio State, Notre Dame and other top teams in the Midwest is depth.
"The quantity of (good players) is far greater (in the SEC) and it's up to the Big Ten to change that. There's one way to do it and that's go out and recruit and get some more depth," Meyer said. "But to say there's not quality football players in the Big Ten is not correct. You'll see that on draft day. There will be some very good players drafted. The quantity is the biggest difference."
You may be tired of the chatter that the SEC continues to dominate college football, but Meyer admits, it's real.
"Texas A&M beat (Alabama), Georgia could have beat them, LSU could have beat them and (Alabama) soundly won the national championship. That tells you a little bit about that confernence."
As he always is, Meyer was direct, when asked if he and the Ohio State coaching staff think about what the Buckeyes have to do catch the Alabama's of the world.
"24-7, every second of our life."
Time to catch up
The Buckeyes started their winter conditioning program this week. It's always an important time for any program but is perhaps more important than ever for this Ohio State team.
Because of the NCAA bowl ban, the Buckeyes lost valuable practice time that bowl teams across the country had.
"The way I look at it we have to catch 15 practices by August or we're not as good as our rivals...we're not as good as the teams we have to beat," Meyer said. "If you want to be a very functional football team there has to be some self driven leadership amongst groups and collect those 15 practices. It'll be interesting to see how it gets done."
Meyer said strength coach Mickey Marotti is setting up areas throughout the indoor Woody Hayes Facility where the players can get extra skill work in...but it's work the players have to do on their own.
"It's on the players," Meyer said. "The coaches can't force them to do it."