Ryan Day Reveals True Feelings On Opt Outs While Defending Justin Fields

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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.

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.

Written by Clint Lamb

Clint Lamb is a College Football Writer for OutKick. Managing Editor for Roll Tide Wire. Sports radio host for The Bullpen on 730/103.9 The UMP. Co-host for The 'Bama Beat podcast through The Tuscaloosa News and TideSports.com.


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  1. football is a game of attrition. opt out and you lose. that is, or was the nature of sport.

    we learned a lot about american athletes in 2020. a lot. and we learned that some athletes are in it for the bling.

    OU doesn’t make good QB’s. they let Burrow Go and he was their only shot at producing a QB.

  2. I don’t know how other opt outs fared in their Pro-Day workouts, but two of A&M’s season opt outs had weak showings, and according to experts did not help their standing at all.
    They all have their reasons for the choices they make. Maybe a little more guidance would help.

  3. “Opting out” of a commitment using a virus that posed zero threat to healthy, young people as your excuse is pathetic. Every single coach and player that didn’t opt out thinks the same thing about the ones that did. All of them. Day just accidentally said it on the record.

    • The players who opted out got bad advice. On every play, they risk suffering a career-ending or even life-changing injury. Still, they let the milder threat of a virus sideline them. They lacked perspective.

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