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Meyer loves night games

September 30, 2013
dsp By SETH STASKEY - Buckeye Blitz (sstaskey@timesleaderonline.com) , Times Leader

Urban Meyer has been very outspoken about his affection for night games at Ohio Stadium.

What's not to like about them other than having to sit around in a hotel all day and wait for the game?

The Buckeyes will play two night home games for the first time in history this season and the first comes Saturday when it hosts No. 24 Wisconsin in front of a crowd of more than 105,000 people who will be decked out in scarlet.

Meyer likes the games because there's an entire day for the atmosphere to grow into one of the best in America. And it's a great opportunity to get possible future Buckeyes on campus to take in the game and see what the Ohio State experience is all about.

It's not just Meyer who likes night games, though.

"Words can't describe playing at night in the Horseshoe," said Buckeyes' linebacker Curtis Grant. "The fans are just crazy and it gives us the 'juice' that everyone's able to feed off and that helps you play."

Obviously, every school would like to play more night games, but it's a television driven society and the majority of the schedule is set by television and it wants premier games on in premier time slots.

The players aren't as accustomed to playing in the day time when they arrive at the college level since the majority of high school games are played on Friday nights.

"It gives you that feeling like you're back in high school under those 'Friday Night Lights,'" Grant said. "We're looking forward to the challenge."

The next Buckeyes' home night game comes on Oct. 26 against Penn State. Ohio State plays in primetime next week, too. The Buckeyes go on the road to Evanston, Ill. to take on a solid Northwestern squad.

The Buckeyes have been fairly successful in night games. All time, they own a 36-20 record in those games. Taking it a step further, OSU is 8-3 at home in those games.

SCHEDULE QUIRKS

It's tough to fathom that after this week's game, there are only three home games remaining for OSU. The Buckeyes won't play at the Horseshoe again, after Saturday, until Oct. 19 against Iowa. It'll host Penn State the following week and then not return to Columbus for a game until Nov. 23 against Indiana.

This week's game is Hall of Fame weekend. Former Buckeyes' head coach John Cooper is amongst those being enshrined this weekend.

COACHING CONNECTION

Meyer has had 10 of his former assistants go on to become head coaches at the collegiate level. For the fourth time in his career, he'll match wits with one of those this weekend.

Wisconsin head coach Gary Anderson worked under Meyer at Utah in 2004 as defensive line coach.

The two are still great friends, but they're friendship takes a backseat this week.

"Our relationship doesn't have anything to do with the game," Anderson said. "Urban's a good friend. I consider him a good friend, but who knows? Maybe he doesn't consider me a good friend. We won't talk this week. It's about the kids, and it always will be. I'm sure he would say the exact same thing."

HEADING HOME

No fewer than 14 Wisconsin Badgers will be returning to the state of Ohio this week after playing their high school ball in the Buckeye State.

One of those is senior Chris Borland. He helped Kettering Alter defeat Steubenville for a state title as a senior in high school.

Borland is now the Badgers' leading tackler thus far.

ON THE DIAL

The Buckeyes and Badgers will be broadcast nationally on ABC with Brett Musberger and former Ohio State quarterback Kirk Herbstreit on the call.

This is the fourth time a former OSU player has served as the color analyst this season.

 
 

 

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