What Ohio State’s Ryan Day and Rutgers’ Greg Schiano said about their heated exchange

COLUMBUS, Ohio — Ohio State football coach Ryan Day had “no hard feelings” against Rutgers coach Greg Schiano following their brief on-field exchange in the fourth quarter of the Buckeyes’ 49-10 victory on Saturday.

Ohio State players took offense to a late hit against punter Jesse Mirco on the Buckeyes’ sideline. Day and other OSU coaches began pulling their players back from a potential fight with Rutgers players. Schiano came running across the field in an attempt to do the same with the Scarlet Knights.

After the players were separated, Day pointed a finger in Schiano’s direction and shouted something at his former co-worker. Schiano, who was OSU’s defensive coordinator in 2017-18 and was not retained when Day took over as head coach, shouted back.

After the game, though, both coaches downplayed the incident as simply two coaches standing up for their players. Schiano said he knew OSU did not call a fake punt. It is worth mentioning that Mirco, an Australian Rules Football player before moving to America, has said before he is not completely familiar with the nuances of this version of the game.

Ryan Day’s take

On what happened: “They came after the punt and Jesse rolled out to the right. Nothing we had ever worked on, he just saw it and took it. He was just a football player. And then took that shot on the sideline and things got heated.

“Just one coach defending their side and one coach defending theirs. There’s no hard feelings at all. I told him that after the game. I have an unbelievable amount of respect for him. So that’s all that was.”

On Mirco’s decision: “I just grabbed him. I said, ‘What happened?’ And he said, ‘I rolled out to the right,’ and he goes, ‘Nobody was on me.’ I said, ‘OK, anybody tell you to do that?’ He says, ‘No.’ I said, ‘OK, we’ll talk about that tomorrow.’”

Greg Schiano’s take

On what happened: “It’s not Ryan Day and I. I think it’s two coaches that protect their players.

“My player was in a sea of Ohio State players and it was closing fast. And I wanted to make sure two things: No. 1 is I wanted to stop our team from coming across the field. That’s how things get very ugly. And I wanted to make sure our player got out of there safely.

“We’re both very competitive guys. I’ve got the utmost respect for Ryan. We’re good friends. We’re good. There’s no problems between us.”

On the postgame handshake: “We’re good friends. We both weren’t going to let that get in the way. In the heat of the moment, competitive, we’re both protecting our players. That’s what good coaches do.”

On how conference blowouts should be handled: “I think I know where you’re going with that. I think it’s our job to stop them. That’s our job. I don’t think that (fake punt) was called. I think that just got ran because of scheme. Sometimes you have things that are automatics and then they happen. I don’t know for sure, but that’s not an issue. That’s not an issue. That had nothing to do with the whole chain of events there.

“It was literally just two competitive guys who were protecting their players. And like I said, I just did not want a fight to break out. It’s not good for Rutgers, it’s not good for Ohio State, it’s not good for college football. So mission accomplished — it didn’t happen.”

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