COLUMBUS — Ohio State football coach Ryan Day made it official Tuesday Kyle McCord is his starting quarterback.
“We feel like Kyle has really stepped up and deserves to be the starter, so we’re going to go ahead and make that distinction,” Day said.
The junior from Philadelphia St. Joseph’s started the Buckeyes’ first two games of the season, but Day maintained he was still in a competition with redshirt freshman Devin Brown.
“He made some nice throws,” Day said of McCord, who completed 14 of 20 passes for 258 yards and a pair of touchdown passes to Marvin Harrison Jr., his high school teammate, in a 35-7 win over Youngstown State on Saturday.
“He kept the offense going,” Day said. “He came out of the gates playing some efficient football, and that’s what we’re going to look for moving forward.”
McCord completed 20 of 33 passes in a season-opening win at Indiana, but that was not enough for Day to call competition he initially said he wouldn’t mind seeing come to an end during spring practice.
With high-scoring Western Kentucky up next and a trip to No. 9 Notre Dame to come after that, Day said McCord will now get the majority of practice reps with the first team and be The Guy on game day.
“I think regardless of the opponent, when you play in Ohio Stadium and you get your second start, you have to see how people are going to react,” Day said. “I thought he was much more poised in this game than the first one, and I think that’s natural. So again, we’ll see if we can we can build on that, but (there are) bigger challenges ahead.”
Brown, a redshirt freshman from Arizona, completed 7 of 13 passes for 101 yards against Youngstown State. He also ran for nine yards on six attempts.
He is regarded as the more athletic of the two, and the staff called designed runs for him in both games. (They also called a draw for McCord at Indiana, though he was tackled shortly after appearing to go the wrong way off a block.)
If that opens up the possibility of Brown maintaining a role as a running quarterback in games, Day would not say.
“Yeah, we’d like to like to get him out there and play,” Day said. “I think it depends on the opponent, depends on the strategy. There’s a lot that will come into play each week. I don’t think it’ll be something that we do the same thing every week, but we’ll look at the opponent. We’ll look at the situation. We’ll look at the schematics of it all and and see where he fits.”
Western Kentucky at Ohio State, 4 p.m., FOX, 1410