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December 27, 2016

J.T. Barrett

Glendale, Arizona

Q. ... throwing the football, pitch and catch, connecting, protecting, all of that?
J.T. BARRETT: I mean, I think everybody, the main thing was we have like three phases into what we try to do, and so the first phase is fundamentals, and that's for everybody.

So, like you said, if it was quarterbacks, it was footwork, fundamentals and getting to the receivers so it would be easy pitch and catch on things. O linemen, making sure they get their steps right as far as pass blocking and the run game as well.

So it was for everybody involved, not just offense, also defense, to make sure they was getting back to the fundamentals so we could still be fundamentally sound when it comes game time.

Q. Do you think it's better?
J.T. BARRETT: Yes, sir.

Q. What's your assessment of this Clemson defensive line, and where would they compare to maybe some of the other teams you face this year?
J.T. BARRETT: Yeah, I mean, they've got some dudes, that's for sure. I think they're at there at the top as far as just disrupting things. I think as a defensive line that's what you try to do is just cause havoc. I think they do a good job of that.

Defense as a whole, they have a lot of things that they like to do, which makes them not predictable. So you kind of -- you have an idea of what they like to do, but then, too, you don't know because they've got a mix of everything.

Q. How ready do you feel this offense is? And is this game on this big a stage -- you want to be playing your best this time of the year. Where do you see this offense?
J.T. BARRETT: I like where we're at right now, I think we're going to be at a good place. I think with the preparation this week for game week, this portion of things that we've already done in bowl practice, I think we're going to be ready when game time comes. So I like where we're at.

I have confidence in the things that we're doing. I think, like I said, with the preparation, the extra preparation we had this week, I think it's going to be really good for us and just help us all be more right for the game.

Q. You told me you felt like the passing game was right there, just a little hitch there, whatever. You guys worked -- I know Coach talked about it in real hard in practice to fine tune, where is the passing game right now?
J.T. BARRETT: Like I said, we've got a good spot, I think, as a whole on the offense. I think we're trusting in what the coaches are telling us as far as players believing in the fundamentals and then also, too, the things that are being called and going out and executing them to the best we can.

Like I said, I like where we're at. I think what we're going to do this next week is going to help us, and so we'll see.

Q. J.T. and you Deshaun Watson became friends at quarterback camp. You know each other well. Did you ever talk about or even dream about meeting each other on this sort of stage?
J.T. BARRETT: No, we talked about it at the beginning of the season. Kind of like any top team in the country you see yourself at the end of the year being in the playoffs and things like that. And early in the year, it was, like, hopefully I'll see you at the end. And sure enough we're here.

But like I said, I think as individuals we have that set out for ourselves and our teams. But then I think being friends and being able to go against each other just makes it all the better.

Q. Two of these teams are very young, do you think experience is overrated?
J.T. BARRETT: I don't think it's overrated. I think it comes into play at different times when it needs to be. I think also, too, is how your season goes has a lot to do with how experienced you could be.

I think with our schedule and the way things played out, we grew up really fast. And I mean the road games we had and also, too, just the tight games in general, I think that helped us a lot and being able to get the experience we needed to put ourselves in a position to play at this type of game.

So I think that plays a lot into how your season goes, because I feel like if it was not challenging to a young team, then there's going to be a time where there were challenges and they may not respond the way they needed to.

Q. What's your thoughts on Boulware and the way he plays the game?
J.T. BARRETT: He's around the ball. I think with him, he's just one of those playmakers, ball-seekers. I think he does a great job of, like, deciphering plays, like what the offense is trying to do.

I think he's instinctive in that way. But he's definitely a ball player, finds himself around the ball a lot.

Q. Considering how many big games are played (indiscernible), how does this feel (indiscernible) than any other game?
J.T. BARRETT: I think at Ohio State we do play in a lot of big games, but I'm not going to sit here and lie and say like this is another, like another game, because it's not. Like we're talking about the College Football Playoffs, and we're talking about the chance to go play for a national championship.

So to sit there and say that, I think that's not the truth. But I think we understand what it takes in order to win the big games because the preparation that we put into it. But it still intensifies and just there's more focus into this type of game because knowing the responsibility and the stakes that's within it.

Q. When you look at all the Ohio State past national championships, how much does that make you lock in to this week and make you want to be a part of it?
J.T. BARRETT: Honestly, I don't even think about that, really. I mean, that's one reason why you came because you understand the tradition and things like that. But when it comes into game weeks and playing for the national championship, you try to focus on the moment and understand it's already a responsibility for playing for Ohio State but also, too, just make sure that you go out there and play your best.

So I think, I don't know, I never really thought about it. But definitely is already a responsibility to be an Ohio State player. So you just try to go out there and play the best for the fans and for your teammates.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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