Who would have ever thought that the Ohio State-Michigan game would be beneath-the-fold material the week of “The Game”?
The Buckeyes (6-5, 3-4 Big Ten) are saying all the right things, but they can’t ignore the flood of reports that say Urban Meyer will take over as OSU’s head coach following Saturday’s contest at the No. 17 Wolverines (9-2, 5-2), win or lose.
Current Buckeye boss Luke Fickell – who many say will stay on Meyer’s staff at OSU – met briefly with reporters on Wednesday and of course was asked about his future job status.
Up first, Fickell was asked if he could address the rumors that Meyer will be hired and Fickell will be an assistant on the staff.
“No, no I won’t,” he said. “It’s not about that and I’m going to have enough respect for this football game to make sure it’s about this football game. I don’t think this is the time or the place. This is the most-historic rivalry in college football and sports in general. We’re going to talk about the football game, we’re going to stress the football game, that’s the most-important thing. I don’t care what the situation is. That’s the way we’ve talked in our offices, that’s the focus we’ve got and that’s what we’re going to continue to move forward with.”
Fickell was asked point-blank if he’s been told that any decision has been made.
“I’ve been told there’s a game at noon on Saturday,” he quipped. “And my ass will be there.”
Sweat To Play?
As for the rear end (and the rest of the body of) senior linebacker Andrew Sweat, he’s questionable for the Michigan game following a concussion suffered two weeks ago at Purdue. However, according to multiple sources, Sweat will play against UM.
“It’s still early in the week and we’ve got to see how he does today (at practice),” Fickell said. “Andrew is one of those guys that if there’s a chance he’ll be out there, he’ll be out there. But sometimes when you’re dealing with the head or neck or something, you’ve got to put that in the hands of the people who know what they’re talking about.”
Defensive coordinator Jim Heacock said on Monday that Sweat’s concussion was the first of his career. That’s good news for the Buckeyes since players usually only miss one week with a concussion unless it’s a recurring theme.