Tuesday, October 5, 2010

PRYOR'S STATUS, MOELLER OUT FOR SEASON, JORDAN HALL AND MORE ...

Photo of Terrelle Pryor by The
Buckeye Times/Darla Dunkle-Hudnell
COLUMBUS — There were quite a few issues on the docket during Ohio State's press luncheon on Tuesday afternoon, and of course, the injury status of Buckeyes junior quarterback Terrelle Pryor was at the top of the list.

According to head coach Jim Tressel, Pryor — who strained his left quad in the third quarter of last Saturday's win at Illinois — should have no problem being able to go this Saturday against Indiana. However, the Buckeyes mentor stated that he doesn't know as of yet if the star signal caller will be back to 100-percent effectiveness.

"Sunday we did a little bit of drills and weight lifting and all that, so we didn't test it, per se," Tressel said of Pryor. "(Monday) was our day off and he was in doing his film study and rehab and all. I don't know who's 100 percent after five games that has as much wear and tear as a guy that has his hands on the ball that much, but I think he'll be fine."

After Pryor returned to the game against Illinois following the injury, it was quite apparent that he had some physical limitations, forcing Tressel to revert from a more balanced spread attack to an I-formation power game.

So, if Pryor is unable to run this Saturday against Indiana will the Buckeyes repeat that second half philosophy?

"Well, I think you always have to have in your bag of tricks things for a strong wind in your face, things for a mobile quarterback, things for a quarterback that's not as mobile," Tressel said. "We kind of went through that last year. Those last three games, we didn't have the mobility at that position, but we always say that that position first and foremost has to make good decisions, which (Pryor) won't be hampered at, at all. He's got to keep us from having turnovers. The decisions have a lot to do with that and we always say that that position has to make big plays.

"Now, maybe some of those big plays won't be done as much with the feet, but we can still do them with the arm," Tressel continued. "So we'll go in with the whole gamut like we always do."

Tressel stated that he doesn't think the injury will affect how Pryor throws the football.

Moeller photo by TBT/Darla
Dunkle-Hudnell
MOELLER DONE FOR THE SEASON ... It is official, Ohio State senior nickelback Tyler Moeller is out for the rest of the 2010 season.

Moeller suffered a torn pectoral muscle early in Saturday's game at Illinois when he attempted to tackle Illini tailback Mikel Leshoure.

It's yet another setback for the fifth-year senior, who missed all of last season due to a major head injury he suffered while being attacked in a Florida bar just prior to fall training camp in 2009.

"I think it's really sad," OSU senior defensive tackle Dexter Larimore said Tuesday about Moeller's injury. "It's something that you really cringe seeing because of what had happened to him last year ...

"He lost all of last year because he was in the wrong place at the wrong time. He trained hard and did everything right and then being at the wrong place at the wrong time took a year away from him. And then to watch him recover and do all the right things, come back, really get after it in the weight room, get after it in the film room, doing all the right things. And then all of a sudden, one play goes wrong and he's out for another year.

"It sad as a competitor and a friend of his," Larimore continued. "It's just sad to see something happen like that to a good guy. It's a tremendous loss for us."

Moeller finished the season by leading the team with 4.5 tackles for loss and two forced fumbles, and was fourth overall in total tackles with 20. Moeller also had an interception this season.

Stoneburnerr photo by TBT/Darla
Dunkle-Hudnell
STONEBURNER'S STATUS STILL UNKNOWN ... The playing status of Ohio State tight end Jake Stoneburner — who missed the Big Ten season opener at Illinois because of an ankle injury he suffered against Eastern Michigan — is still up in the air.

"We'll find out today," Tressel said on Tuesday. "That's normally an 8- to 21-day deal. That's my experience. This weekend would be right around the 14-, 15-day mark. He's done everything on land linear, but now when he hits someone and has to drive off and all that, that's what we'll find out today and tomorrow. We'll probably know the answer to that on Thursday."

If Stoneburner is unable to go on Saturday, redshirt freshman Reid Fragel will make his second straight start.

A CALL FOR HALL ... There have been many fans and critics wondering why Tressel hasn't employed sophomore tailback Jordan Hall more into the Buckeyes struggling run game.

"Yeah, I love him ... " Tressel said of Hall. "I have one million percent faith in Jordan Hall. He's going to make a difference this season, he already has. Gosh, his punt and kick returns. He's a good runner."

Of course, that doesn't mean that Hall going to supplant Brandon Saine and Dan Herron as the starter.

"Well, let's go back to, let's say three weeks ago," Tressel said. "We've got a lot of receivers we like to get the football to. We've got a quarterback we'd like to run seven to ten times, and a couple tailbacks who we think are very good. So there just aren't that many balls left and I guess we could take those balls this season that we've thrown to tight ends and give them to Jordan, but then we'd be having the opposite discussion."

QUOTE OF THE DAY ... Speaking of Hall getting more carries in the backfield, this takes us to the quote of the day.

"I wish we had more balls," Tressel said, before pausing and giving a little grin. "That sounds terrible. Man, I am getting old."

After quite a few laughs, Tressel continued by saying, "You know what I'm saying. I wish we had more carries available. But you're going to see Jordan Hall."