The No. 10 Ohio State football team is back to preparing for a more traditional style offense in UNLV, compared with Army’s triple-option offense the Buckeyes faced in Week 3.
Coach Urban Meyer spoke on Tuesday’s weekly Big Ten coaches teleconference, providing injury updates on quarterback Joe Burrow, wide receiver Johnnie Dixon and linebacker Dante Booker.
Meyer said Burrow, who was locked in a battle with redshirt freshman Dwayne Haskins for the backup quarterback position before the season began, has been cleared to play since breaking his throwing hand before the season.
“Joe has been cleared. He’s practicing,” Meyer said. “He started practicing last week, but we weren’t comfortable with him and we’ll make that decision as this week progresses. But it’s still very close. I think both the quarterbacks give us an opportunity to move the ball.”
Dixon didn’t play in Ohio State’s 38-7 victory Saturday against Army, which prompted the question of if Dixon was dealing with another knee injury for the wide receiver. Dixon has struggled with his physical health since his freshman year in 2014, but Meyer said Dixon was held out of Saturday’s game with a hamstring injury.
“I don’t think it’s long-term,” Meyer said.
Dixon tried to play through the injury during warm-ups, but Meyer said Dixon’s hamstring was still bothering him, resulting in freshman Trevon Grimes seeing his first action on the field.
Here are more updates from the Week 4 teleconference.
On Dante Booker: “He’s got a little bit of a sore shoulder and also he… It was just a schematic issue that was all assignment-based. We felt the other guys were more prepared for that.
On the secondary: “That’s probably No. 1 on the hit list, as far as where we need to see progress on our pass defense, which obviously the secondary is the primary. “But it also goes along with pressuring the quarterback and coverage as well. That’s No. 1, as far as we need to see marked improvement from the first two games.”
On Jalyn Holmes: “Jalyn’s a very instrumental part of energy of our team. He’s a leader of our team and everybody respects him. I still think there’s still more to be had with his ability and hopefully it’s going to continue … we’re going to have those opportunities to change the game because when he does, he’s a tremendous talent.”
On the offense’s progress versus Army: “I think all phases were better and obviously no disrespect to Army, it’s just a different group than we faced the week before. We’re still a work in progress and still working very hard as a staff and players to become the kind of offense we want to be.”
On UNLV: “Very tough team to navigate and obviously they feel that they have very good players. I think they’re seventh in the country in total offense so they know what they’re doing.”