Andrew Holleran / Photo editor
It’s not the first time Ohio State coach Urban Meyer has faced Miami (Ohio).
Two years ago, Meyer’s then No. 4-ranked Florida Gators needed a 13-point fourth quarter to pull away from the Redhawks in Gainesville before eventually winning 34-12.
“We didn’t play good that day. I remember we had a new center, Mike (Pouncey), and we snapped the ball all over the place, so we weren’t very good that day,” said the first-year coach.
An anemic Florida offense fumbled the ball eight times that day on route to an 8-5 finish in Meyer’s last season at Florida.
That particular Miami squad, which finished 10-4 and won the Mid-American Conference, Meyer said, is far from the one he’s scheduled to face this Saturday at noon in Ohio Stadium.
“It’s a different Miami team,” he said. “These guys throw it all over the place now.”
What Meyer is alluding to is the Redhawks’ aerial attack that figures to test a relatively-young Buckeyes defensive secondary.
Despite a 4-8 finish in 2011, Miami features the 14th-ranked passing offense in the nation behind from last season behind senior quarterback Zac Dysert.
With Dysert and now second-year coach Don Treadwell, the Redhawks averaged 299.1 yards through the air.
It’s something Meyer seems to be well-aware of.
“They have two NFL (caliber) players on offense,” he said, likely referring to Dysert and Miami receiver Nick Harwell, who averaged 129.6 yards receiving yards a game in 2011. “I don’t remember that as well.”
Even with the contest looming on Saturday against Miami, Meyer said the Buckeyes still aren’t “game ready, but close.”
“You could tell by everybody’s good demeanor that that was a good day,” Meyer told assembled media members regarding the Buckeyes’ Wednesday practice.
While it is widely-reported that the remnants of Tropical Storm Isaac will pass through Columbus sometime on Saturday, Meyer said it hasn’t affected the way OSU prepares for its first game of the season.
“We might call the game different, but it’s the same game plan,” he said.
Additionally, Meyer also confirmed the possibility of a slight change in the Buckeyes’ uniforms.
While Meyer did not dive into specifics, he said he doesn’t think – or hope – any sort of changes are “on pace to be that much different.”
Meyer said he let his leadership committee aid in the decision.
“I said just make sure this is all right with Archie Griffin and the former players, because I don’t want to start breaking traditions around here,” he said.