Ohio State fans' issue with football coach Ryan Day is clear - but is it justified?
Columbus, Ohio - Ohio State's issue with football head coach Ryan Day is clear: he doesn't win when it matters!
Ryan Day isn't just a good head football coach — some might say he's downright great.
With a nearly 90 percent winning record, Day consistently brings in top-notch talent, nurturing players like NFL quarterback sensation CJ Stroud. Since taking charge at Ohio State, he's notched an impressive 56-7 record that most programs would kill for.
Yet, there's a twist: Ohio State doesn't settle for anything less than excellence, and those seven losses under Day came during the biggest and most crucial games of the season.
Coach Day has a 1-3 record against Michigan and a less-than-ideal 1-6 record against the College Football Playoff (CFP) top 5.
While he has an admirable track record with CFP playoff appearances and Big Ten championships in his four years as the Buckeyes head coach, these results are not enough for a program that aims to beat Michigan and contend for a national title every year.
Buckeye fans around the country summed things up best over the internet following Ohio State's devastating third-straight loss to Michigan on Saturday.
Is Buckeye Nation being too harsh on head coach Ryan Day?
Ohio State has some really demanding fans. Ryan Day, while not perfect, just had his seventh loss in five years. If the school decided to fire him - though it's unlikely - then who would want to step into his shoes with all that pressure?
The expectations for this program are sky-high. Fans want them to win every game and grab the championship trophy every single year. But let's be real: what coach can actually pull that off?
Now, former Ohio State players are calling for coaching changes following Day's third-straight loss to Michigan. But it's important to remember that these same players didn't have to deal with a strong Michigan team back when Rich Rodriguez and Brady Hoke were the head coaches.
Losing to Michigan three times in a row is tough for Ohio State fans. But hey, Michigan - amid their ongoing cheating scandal - is really good, just like Georgia, Alabama, and Clemson. Beating top teams is no walk in the park, and winning championships is a big deal! So, it's not always Ohio State's fault when things don't go their way because other teams can be good and play hard, too.
Buckeye fans have a history of complaining about coaches as they did during the Jim Tressel and Urban Meyer eras. Tressel got flak for not winning big games except against Michigan, and Meyer faced criticism for losing to teams like Iowa, Michigan State, and Purdue but demolishing championship-level teams.
Ohio State needs to figure out if beating Michigan every single year is more important than winning a championship. Because guess what? Times have changed, and last year showed that you don't always need one to get the other.
Perhaps Alabama football can teach the Buckeyes a thing or two about how to deal with winning the College Football Playoff and conference championship without defeating their rival.
Cover photo: EZRA SHAW / GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA / GETTY IMAGES VIA AFP