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August 10, 2010COLUMBUS, Ohio - There isn't a time of the year where the Ohio State football team isn't actively working out.
But as much as the Buckeyes find themselves in the weight room or working on their cardio, there isn't anything that can prepare the team for what it had to go through on Tuesday morning.
The team endured its first full-pads practice in very warm weather with extreme humidity. As the team walked off the field, there wasn't a player that wasn't completely soaked in sweat and water.
"It is something you cant prep for," said safety Jermale Hines. "We ran hard all summer, but once you're out here it is a totally different type of conditioning. It is something you just have to fight through and be mentally tough."
With the Buckeyes donning full pads for the first time, the team had perhaps its most physical practice of the young fall.
The coaching staff lined them up for 11-on-11 scrimmaging, allowing them to participate in the game to its full capacity for the first time in months. With the heat, it was a tiresome day for the Buckeyes.
"We just have to keep pushing," Herron said. "It is hard to be out here in the heat but we have to keep fighting through it and keep icing and keep hydrating."
Ohio State defensive back Tyler Moeller couldn't wait for Tuesday to lay his first big hit of the fall. In Monday's practice, Moeller recalled hitting wide receiver DeVier Posey as he came across the middle.
It is a feeling he has waited over a year to feel.
"I had a big hit yesterday against Posey," Moeller said Tuesday after the team's first full-pads practice of the fall. "He caught me right where I had my surgery so that was my first big hit of the camp. It felt good. I'll remember that one for sure."
Moeller missed all of last season while recovering from a head injury sustained before fall camp last year and though he was able to participate in spring ball, he was held out of hitting.
Given hitting his what Moeller likes to do most, being back out with the team in a full capacity again is something he has waited a long time for. Moeller will be competing for a starting spot for the Buckeyes' "star" position in the secondary.
"It feels good to be out here hitting again," Moeller said. "I am truly blessed to be recovered and back out here with the team."
Moeller's injury dates back to last July when he was in Treasure Island, Fla., wit his family celebrating his grandparents' 50th wedding anniversary. While in Florida, Moeller went to a local restaurant where a conflict ended with him being punched by a man named Ralph Gray Decker, who was charged with felony battery.
Decker was just recently sentenced to two years of probation in Florida after pleading guilty to the charges. Moeller admits he is doing his best with forgiveness of Decker, but still has a ways to go before he can accomplish that.
"You really need to forgive someone to get past it," Moeller said, "but it is hard a person does that and then tries to get out of it then comes after your character in court on the bible and everything. Since he says those things about you and everyone believes those things about you, people believe it.
"I am really blessed to be here right now. There was a 50 percent chance that I should have survived," Moeller said. "For him to do that and say those things, it is tough to forgive someone like that. I truly believe he is only sorry that he got caught."
Backup quarterback Joe Bauserman stood in the pocket and fired a perfect pass for a touchdown to Chris Fields, showing off his accuracy and immense arm strength.
On the very next play, Bauserman rocketed another perfect pass, this time to wide receiver Grant Schwartz for the touchdown in the corner of the end zone.
For Bauserman it was probably the best day he has had in fall camp, which was big for the incumbent backup quarterback to Terrelle Pryor who now finds himself in a battle with redshirt freshman signal caller Kenny Guiton.
"It is competition every day," Bauserman said. "We all go out there and compete and I have no control over anything but myself."
Guiton has become the favorite pick by onlookers to win the backup spot for the Buckeyes after putting on quite the display in Ohio State's spring game, but Bauserman isn't going to sit back and allow him to take it.
With a sharp performance Tuesday, Bauserman is pleased with where he is at in the battle.
"It felt good," Bauserman said of his practice. "I am just trying to come out here and make plays. The competition is always heated. We always try to come out here and do the best we can."
Check in the Horseshoe Lounge for the complete practice update thread, where a ton of information from today has been provided.
Ari Wasserman is a staff writer for BuckeyeGrove.com. He can be reached at Ari@BuckeyeGrove.com.