- Austin Ward, ESPN Staff Writer
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A taste of what was on the minds of Ohio State players during the annual Media Day on Sunday afternoon.
The senior running back recounted his freak injury and provided his initial reaction to seeing the cut tendon in his foot: "I was letting my dog out, he went to the bathroom and I went to clean it up out of the grass, stepped on glass. I do it all the time. (The glass) was like deep in the grass, because obviously I didn’t see it, I don’t know how it got there.
"I was like, ‘I need stitches.’ It was leaking pretty bad. I thought that was all it was stitches, then I had to get an MRI and they told me I tore a tendon and I was like, ‘Man, this is my first year and I have to miss the first two games.’"
The senior defensive end on the toughest part of recovering from a serious injury like the knee issue that led to micro-fracture surgery for him: "I’m never a quitter. You’re going to have to drag me off this field before I call it quits. I think why I was down because it’s just hard to accept the fact that you’re performing at such a high level one day and the next day and so on and so forth you’re just like, ‘Gosh, when is this going to stop? When am I going to feel right again?’ You just have doubts surfacing throughout your mind. It’s a really hard for an athlete to get hurt and realize his potential, it’s a pain not only physically, but mentally it’s even worse."
The sophomore receiver was asked if he was going to average 20 yards per catch again like he did last year: "No -- I want to average more. And I want catch more than 14 for the whole year last year. I was used to 14 in one game back in high school. I’m looking forward to having a great season. I think every single one of us is going to push each other to have the best year we can."
On if he's paying attention to the early NFL Draft projections ahead of his junior season at defensive tackle: "Nah, coach (Mike) Vrabel really has me concentrating on this season and not really worrying too much about this NFL talk. Just focusing on this year and winning as many games as we can for the seniors. That's what I'm here to do."
The freshman defensive lineman was told a roster had his weight listed as 245 pounds: "Yeah, that’s not right at all. Right now, I’m at about 288, 289."
On playing on the inside at defensive tackle now: "They moved me down to the three-technique, and I did good at it. That’s just where they left me for now on, and I’m fine with it. I think I’ll probably just stay. There could be a situation where I go inside and out, but the biggest adjustment there was probably learning to use my hands even more. Just keeping a stronger base."
8hDan Murphy and Mitch Sherman
7hSharon Katz, ESPN Stats & Information
1dMitch Sherman and Dan Murphy
3dDan Murphy and Mitch Sherman