COLUMBUS, Ohio – The Ohio State University Buckeyes reconvened in Atlanta on Christmas evening to continue preparation for the 55th Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl. The Buckeyes (11-1) are the No. 4 seed in this ninth College Football Playoff and will meet No. 1 seed and defending national champion Georgia (13-0) in one semifinal at 8 p.m. New Year’s Eve at Mercedes-Benz Stadium.
The Buckeyes practiced at Mercedes-Benz Stadium Monday from 10 a.m. until 11:30 a.m. and the team will continue this similar schedule – the team’s practice window is 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. – through Friday. The stadium, home to the Atlanta Falcons, opened in 2017, has an official capacity of 71,000, but will host more than 78,000 for this CFP Semifinal.
61 and 49 and 13
Ohio State players left Columbus Dec. 21 to be home for the holidays and either returned to Columbus to fly on the official charter to Atlanta or went directly to Atlanta from their homes. A total of 61 players traveled from Columbus to Atlanta with an additional 49 players taking the home-to-Atlanta option.
Additionally, 13 players will rejoin the team on Thursday, including a number of injured players, walk-ons and two who have retired from football.
The team, coaches and travelling staff enjoyed a delicious Christmas evening dinner upon arrival to the team headquarters, the Omni Atlanta, at 6:30 p.m. Meal MVP honors had to be the prime rib, served medium rare with savory Au Jus and a delightfully smooth – in both taste and appearance – horseradish condiment. Podium performances were also had by the local carolers serenading the Buckeyes and a real Santa Claus visiting with the kids.
The College FB Hall of Fame
Ohio State and Georgia players will enjoy a tour of the College Football Hall of Fame and a dinner for both teams Monday evening.
The visit to the Hall of Fame will include two “Battle for Bowl Week” activities: “Football Feud” and “Drop it Like It’s Hot”. “Battle for Bowl Week” is designed to enhance the bowl week experience for the players by bringing their competitive nature into areas off the playing field.
Doss Honorary Captain
Michael Doss, the three-time All-American safety from Canton, Ohio, who was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame earlier this month, will be Ohio State’s honorary captain for the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl. Doss is the 27th Ohio State player to be enshrined into the Hall of Fame.
Ohio State head coach Ryan Day, LB Tommy Eichenberg and TE Cade Stover were part of a media zoom call on Monday. Some brief thoughts from the zoom:
Offensive interview day will take place Tuesday at the official media hotel, the Westin at Peachtree, from 8:30 a.m. until 9:15 p.m. Ohio State will be represented by offensive coordinator/tight ends coach Kevin Wilson and QB C.J. Stroud, WRs Marvin Harrison Jr. and Emeka Egbuka, OT Paris Johnson and RB Miyan Williams.