Ryan Day talks about matchup with Clemson, Justin Fields during College GameDay appearance
Ryan Day has been the head coach at Ohio State for just two seasons. But if you were to define his career by one opponent, it would be Clemson.
In his first season, Day’s squad blew an early lead in a loss to the Tigers in last season’s College Football Playoff semifinals. On Friday, the Buckeyes get another crack at Dabo Swinney’s squad.
Prior to this highly-anticipated matchup, Day joined the College GameDay crew. He discussed both the game and his quarterback, Justin Fields.
As you can tell from Day’s quotes, Ohio State certainly remembers last season’s heartbreaking defeat.
“I think coming off the game last year is fresh in our minds,” Day said. “It certainly was a motivation throughout the season, to get where we wanted to go but we didn’t finish it. When you get to this point, you know you’re going to be playing really good teams.
“What it comes down to, with all the emotion, is execution. That’s what we’re trying to focus on.”
Though it seems like the Buckeyes’ focus is getting back at Clemson, Day preaches a focus on his squad and what it can do best today.
“We haven’t played our best game,” he said. “We’ve put a lot of our focus, not so much on playing Clemson, but on that.”
Part of playing that best game will be getting a strong performance out of Fields. He struggled against Northwestern in the B1G Championship Game.
“He just needs to be himself,” Day said. “He’s a great quarterback and he’s a winner. Last game was a little funky and we lost Chris [Olave] a couple days before the game…He’s played good this season.
“He’s put a lot of work in, but he’s only played six games. We hope he plays his best game tonight.”
The folks in Columbus hope for the same thing.