Aug. 16, 2005
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Q: Everything looks like it comes so natural to you on the football field. Has it always felt that way?
A: No. When I was growing up, I was the slowest kid out there. I had a lot of things to work on, but as I got taught the game a lot of things started to come natural. When you keep doing things you’re supposed to do, you put yourself in good situations.
Q: What about off the field? Is there anything about college life you’re still trying to get the hang of?
A: I’m not really a go-out guy that you’ll see at parties. Every once in a while I’ll go out, but I have fun doing the things I like to do. I spend a lot of time in my dorm room. For the past year, if you ever wanted to find me, that’s where I was.
Q: Which college or pro football players did you try to imitate when you were a kid?
A: People will hate me for saying this, but my favorite player was Charles Woodson. I was a big Ohio State fan, but I just liked his swagger and the way he played.
Q: Why No. 7?
A: Well, No. 2 was always my favorite number and it still is, but when I got here I wanted a single-digit number and No. 7 was the only one available, so I took it. Some great players have worn that number here and I guess I got lucky with it.
Q: You were the top young hurdler in the nation last year. Was it tough not competing on the track this spring?
A: No. I needed a little break. I needed to work on some things, like gaining a little weight, getting stronger and learning the offense better. I missed it, but I gained something out of it.
Q: What was your most memorable moment from your freshman season?
A: My first touchdown in the `Shoe’ against Wisconsin. It was a great feeling to go in and score and see the crowd and my teammates go nuts.
Q: What’s your secret to being a good punt returner?
A: It’s no secret – it’s the blocking up front by my teammates. If they didn’t block, I would just catch the ball and get tackled. They know that if Teddy or Santonio is back there and they give us a chance, we might score, so you just look for the open hole and go.
Q: Where is the most insteresting place you have been?
Q: Every Ohio State fan remembers where they were for the 2002 national championship. Where were you?
Q: When you break into the open field, do you hear the crowd?
A: No. I don’t hear the crowd until I score or get tackled. Then, it’s either a big yell, or an “awhhh.”
Q: Have people stopped mispronouncing your name?
A: (Laughs)… No, but I don’t get mad. As long as they’re saying my name that’s a great feeling.
Q: Who is most likely to call your cell phone?
A: My girlfriend.
Q: Do you always answer?
A: Yes, ALWAYS.
Q: Take us through the process of you playing quarterback last year.
A: I heard it through the grapevine that they might put me back there, but I didn’t think much of it because it’s just about the team. If it would help the team for me to be back there then I would do it. They called me over in practice and we started working on it. It was a great experience because now I understand what a quarterback goes through. Everything happens so fast.
Q: And in the Alamo Bowl, when you saw Justin Zwick tweak his leg, did you know it was your time.
A: Yes. I knew we didn’t want to take a year away from Todd Boeckman, so I had a feeling I was going in. I was pretty excited. Quarterback is such an important position and I never thought that me, Ted Ginn Jr., would ever play quarterback at Ohio State. When I went in the crowd yelled, they were shocked. And the defense was in shock, too.
Q: Were you tugging on Coach Tressel’s sleeve to let you throw a pass?
A: Yeah, and were about ready to try a pass play but the play clock was running down so we had to call a run play in a hurry.
Q: Someone said you are the baby of the family?
A: Yeah, I was always the youngest kid, the youngest cousin, always. I didn’t really have anyone around me my age, so it was always me, my grandma and the dog. And the broom.
Q: The broom?
A: Everyday it was the same routine. I’d get to my grandma’s house at 8 a.m. and sweep the porch. Then at noon I’d sweep the porch again. There wouldn’t be anything there but I would have to sweep it again. And I swept it again before I left at 6 p.m. It was that same routine everyday, but it helped me. And if it wasn’t sweeping, it was either mowing, painting, raking or putting tar down. I knew I was doing one of those five things everyday. And I was only like 8 or 9 years old, but I have painted more railings than most people have seen in their lifetime.
Q: This summer, you worked out everyday at 6 a.m. and went to class?
A: Yes, every day. I get up at 5:15 a.m. and run and lift. Then I have to be in class by 8:30 a.m., at study table at 10:30, then I run sprints on the track in the afternoon. It’s not tough after you get used to it. I don’t even need an alarm clock now.
Q: What’s your favorite sports movie?
A: “The Program.” With all the trials and tribulations that freshmen running back had to go through, he showed a lot of toughness to succeed.
Q: Have you ever had to carry a football around because you fumbled like he did?
A: No, not yet.
Q: So Tom and Jerry was, and still is, your favorite cartoon?
A: If there was an all-day Tom and Jerry marathon on TV right now I’d watch every minute of.
Q: Your Dad, Ted Sr., coached you in high school. What was that like?
A: It was the best thing ever because he never shows favoritism. If you walked onto our practice field you would have never known that I was his son. In fact he probably hollered at me louder and harder than anyone else, but he always left it on the field. At home, I was just a normal kid.
Q: What was your favorite meal growing up?
A: Fish, spaghetti, lobster and shrimp. All together.
Q: All together on the same plate?
A: Yep. I love them all together and that’s what I would ask for my birthday dinner.
Q: What’s your favorite sport to watch on TV other than football?
A: College basketball or the Cleveland Cavaliers.