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October 13, 2010

Pryor not 100 percent, but ready

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COLUMBUS, Ohio - Since Ohio State starting quarterback Terrelle Pryor suffered a strained quad two weeks ago at Illinois, the quarterback has been noticeably less than 100 percent.

When meeting with reporters at the Woody Hayes Athletic Center on Wednesday evening, Pryor confirmed that he is still not 100 percent. However, Pryor said he is healthy enough to play and not be limited when the Buckeyes take on Wisconsin Saturday night in Madison.

"Any time you get injured you're never 100 percent," Pryor said. "I would be lying if I told you that. (My quad) is enough to carry as much as I have to carry the ball and do what I have to do to try to help the team win."

In Pryor's first game since suffering the injury against the Illini, the quarterback wasn't called on to run the ball once in Ohio State's 38-10 win over Indiana last Saturday. Instead, Pryor threw for a career-high 334 yards and added three touchdowns after completing 24-of-30 pass attempts.

Because the Buckeyes employed a game plan against the Hoosiers that allowed Pryor to throw the entire time, the quarterback was never in a situation where he needed to run at top speed.

With strains it is sometimes typical that they can be aggravated once fully tested, but Pryor didn't confirm that has sprinted at full speed since the injury had occurred.

Nevertheless, both he and head coach Jim Tressel were adamant that the quarterback would not be limited in any way when facing the Badgers. In fact, Tressel expressed the need to utilize Pryor's dual-threat ability.

"We feel going into every game that we need the two-way threat because sometimes the best decision that a quarterback makes is to tuck it and take off and it just so happens when he tucks it and takes off, it could be 60," Tressel said Tuesday in his press conference. "So that's huge to us, having that ability."

The Buckeyes (6-0, 2-0 Big Ten) will put their perfect record on the line Saturday in one of the most hostile environments in the country to play in when they invade Camp Randall Stadium.

Pryor, who called a team meeting Sunday with his teammates after it was apparent the squad would inherit the No. 1 ranking, said the last thing he will be worried about once the game starts is his injury.

"I think in these games that you don't even think about (injuries)," Pryor said. "It just is what it is. You throw your body around and do whatever you have to do (to win). At the end of the day I don't want to lose.

"I am not going to let us lose. I'm going to push myself and do whatever I possibly have to do until we're up," he continued. "I know some of the offense revolves around me and anytime I touch the ball I'm trying to make a play or make a first down and lead the guys as much as I can because at the end of the day they're going to be looking at me to make a play."

Ari Wasserman is a staff writer for BuckeyeGrove.com. He can be reached at Ari@BuckeyeGrove.com.



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