Ohio State starting QB decision on the horizon 

Published: Wednesday, August 14, 2019 @ 12:52 PM
Updated: Wednesday, August 14, 2019 @ 3:06 PM

Ryan Day happy for upgrades

Ohio State football coach Ryan Day did not name a starting quarterback Wednesday, but he is getting closer. 

“I think probably what we’re going to do is get through the weekend and then on Monday probably make a final decision, but guys are competing really well.” 

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Day also provided a strong hint as to why he has a timeframe in mind now as opposed to the last time he met with reporters

“Justin is practicing at a high level now,” Day said, referring Georgia transfer Justin Fields. “He’s had a nice couple of really good days here.” 

Since Fields announced he would be a Buckeye, both of the scholarship quarterbacks behind 2018 starter Dwayne Haskins left Ohio State via transfer. Tate Martell did so in January with Matthew Baldwin following suit after spring practice concluded in April. 

In came Gunnar Hoak, a central Ohio native who spent three seasons at Kentucky, after that to join Fields and Chris Chugunov, a senior who came last season as a graduate transfer from West Virginia. 

Saturday after the team held its first major scrimmage of the preseason, Day said, “Nobody went out there and won the job, for sure.” 

>>READ MORE of Day’s takeaways from the scrimmage

Fields, a five-star recruit in the class of 2018 before serving as the backup quarterback for the Bulldogs last fall, has taken the majority of the No. 1 reps in practice despite Day saying Hoak and Chugunov were also part of a the discussion to start the season-opener against Florida Atlantic on Aug. 31.

“If somebody makes a mistake — if somebody causes a fumble or turns the ball over or anything like that — they have to do a lap,” Day said. “If somebody has a penalty, they have to do a lap, so any time that happens, a new guy goes in, but that's at every position. So we try to roll the best we can, but for the most part, when the ones have been out there, Justin has been with the ones.”

After sounding dissatisfied with the position Saturday, Day said he feels good about it. 

“I feel better than I did last week at this time,” he said. "I think the guys are getting more and more reps under their belt. I do think Justin has taken a stride in the last couple days and the last week. He's moving the team nicely, taking care of the ball better the last couple days. Throwing the ball on time. Improvement's there and leadership is improving. 

“So we've got a padded practice tomorrow, a padded practice on Saturday, and then we'll regroup and then go ahead on Monday.