Day avoids doubling down on Lou Holtz, but thoroughly enjoyed doubling up Notre Dame

Ohio State football coach Ryan Day did not double down on Lou Holtz, but instead made a point of letting everyone know he enjoyed doubling up Holtz’s former team.

“I’m very proud of the fact we’re 2-0 against Notre Dame in the last two years,” Day said, referencing the 17-14 road win against the Fighting Irish Sept. 23.

Immediately after the victory in South Bend, Day called out Holtz for having questioned Ohio State’s physicality in losses to Michigan, Georgia, Clemson and Alabama since Day replaced Urban Meyer in 2019. Holtz coached Notre Dame from 1986-96.

Lou Holtz
Lou Holtz

“I’d like to know where Lou Holtz is right now. What he said about our team, I cannot believe,” Day told an NBC sideline reporter, expressing anger over comments Holtz’ made one day earlier.

Day did not want to revisit his post-game rant in detail on Tuesday.

“I don’t want to get into a bunch of that today, because all the focus is on Maryland,” he said.

But Day did mention the back-to-back season wins against Notre Dame, adding, “I’m proud of the way we played. I’m proud of the grit that they showed. It was an emotional game.”

Day also addressed the feedback he has received since defending his players on national TV.

Ohio State coach Ryan Day celebrates after beating Notre Dame on Sept. 23.
Ohio State coach Ryan Day celebrates after beating Notre Dame on Sept. 23.

“The response that I’ve gotten from Buckeye Nation, people around Columbus, our team, has been remarkable,” he said. “They just loved the passion our team played with on Saturday night.”

Expanding a bit on the topic of taking up for your team, Day explained it requires patience to know when not to go public with comments supporting players against outside “noise.”

“You have to execute a lot of patience,” he said. “Bite your tongue a lot, that’s part of the job. But sometimes when your team reaches a certain point, you have to do what’s right for the guys on your team, and finding that balance is the art of being a coach.”

Day added that “a lot of times you have to take the high road, and that’s going to be the majority of the time, but I also know it’s Ohio against the world, and that’s part of the job.”

Players know there comes a time when they and the coaching staff must stand up for what they believe in, Day said.

“We’re focused on Maryland, so that’s behind us, but I also think that was a lesson learned for our team,” he said.


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This article originally appeared on The Columbus Dispatch: Ryan Day mum on Lou Holtz, delights in beating ND twice in a row