Ryan Day is here to defend Justin Fields. Somehow, unfounded rumors about Fields and his work ethic recently began circulating. Those rumors have been squashed by many, and Day is just the latest to come to the star quarterback’s aid.
Though the criticism doesn’t seem to have much substance, Day’s comments are still helpful. There is also a significant takeaway from his statement. In defending Fields, Day also made his true feelings on opt outs known.
Here is the quote from an interview Day recently did with Peter King of NBC Sports.
“The whole idea that he doesn’t have a very good work ethic?” Day told King. “I mean, to me, that’s crazy. He got done with the Clemson game [the 2019 loss in the College Football Playoff] and he came back and all he did was work to get back to that game. And when those other guys are opting out, what’s he do? He petitions to have a season. He put together this petition that the Big Ten athletes all signed saying that they want to play, but they want to play safely and that they don’t accept canceling the season. It was all led by Justin Fields. Where was everybody else? Where were the guys who were opting out then? You know, you don’t love the game if you’re doing something like that. This kid loves the game.
“I heard something about the last one to come in, first one to leave. First off, the scouts weren’t in our building all year. Last one in? Every morning, at least every morning we could be in the building, early, he’s in with [assistant AD for football sports performance] Mickey Marotti. The guys who were self-motivated and could do things on their own, those were the ones who made it. He was unbelievable. He changed his diet. He got stronger. He did better than most.”
We all know how the reactions are going to go. Day is going to be heavily criticized for questioning the love any opt out has for the game. We’re already seeing it from people on social media.
Separate from Fields, this is a pretty gross quote from Ryan Day taking a shot at players who opted out last season. pic.twitter.com/rbrCe3lISC
— Seth Walder (@SethWalder) April 5, 2021
But let’s not act like the Ohio State head coach is the only one thinking these things.
In fact, I’d guess that there are plenty of other coaches who feel the same way. We’ll just never know it because those coaches, as sad as it is to say, will be too afraid to share their opinions publicly.
Do you agree or disagree with Day?
Follow Clint Lamb on Twitter @ClintRLamb.