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December 27, 2018

Jonathan Cooper

Pasadena, California

Q. (No microphone.)
JONATHAN COOPER: I added a minor of communications. Choosing my major, I just new that I wanted to deal with something with numbers and money, and I just kinda picked the easiest one.

Q. How did you find yourself balancing doing so on the field and doing well academically?
JONATHAN COOPER: It's just time management. It's knowing when you have stuff that's due, due Friday or that Sunday that you can't really push it off because if you don't get it done early, I mean, you're doing it in the hotel, you're doing it right after the game. I mean sometimes the paper is due during the game so you have to not procrastinate and make sure you get your work done early.

It was a pretty hard adjustment. I think it's what it should have been. But I think I handled it well. Academic All-Big Ten for three years now, so. . .

Q. What kind of help do you use? What resources did the school provide to help you?
JONATHAN COOPER: They provided tutors for me for in classes. Whenever I was struggling in class I could always go to my advisor and be like, I need a tutor for this class and they would always give one to me. They made sure that I knew my schedule and everything, knew what classes were online and what classes I had to walk into. My advisors helped me through all of that. The advisors that they provide here are the best of the best.

Q. Do you have a favorite class?
JONATHAN COOPER: My favorite class? My freshman year I took acting. I took acting, and it happened to be my favorite class, surprisingly.

Q. Did you have to do any monologues or anything?
JONATHAN COOPER: I actually did. I had to stand up in front of the class and do a whole monologue and it was fun! It was fun.

Q. Can you do it now?
JONATHAN COOPER: I'm not going to do it now.

Q. What was the monologue?
JONATHAN COOPER: It was over a book, like some book. The teacher was really fun, too. That's what really made the class. But it was a fun monologue and he was like, you should take this acting thing more serious and get, like, into it and everything and I was like, yeah, but I gotta kinda focus on my major.

Q. You can focus on it now that you're in LA though?
JONATHAN COOPER: Acting? I heard Terrence Howard was just in Disneyland, and maybe I'll go up to him and be like, Yo, maybe you got a spot!

Q. Be on "Empire" or something like that?
JONATHAN COOPER: I wouldn't mind being on "Empire". I would rather on "Power."

Q. Oh, okay. Do you feel like it helps you out be a football player contribute to the team at all?
JONATHAN COOPER: What helps me?

Q. Acting class or your major?
JONATHAN COOPER: Oh, um, when it comes to football I know that, you know, I'm kind of keeping them both separated. I know that when football is over, I have my degree and my major to fall back on, so I kinda like keep 'em separate.

I feel like studying in the beginning does help me with football when it comes to studying film and looking at the other team and knowing what to look for and writing down notes and I've done it had in the classroom so I can do it in the classroom or in football.

Q. When you are talking about film what have you seen on Washington in the last few weeks as you've studied them? What have you seen on their offense and what are they going to present to you that will be challenging?
JONATHAN COOPER: I have seen that they have a decent offensive line. I feel like the power of their offense is their running backs. They got three really good running backs. They have good athletes. They're a good football team.

I feel like our coaches have a good plan for them, and we'll be able to get after them.

Q. Jake Browning, when you watch him, what stands out about him?
JONATHAN COOPER: I feel like he's patient, you know? He knows where and what to do with the ball. I mean, that's all I got. I'm more focused on the offensive linemen. I'm trying to figure out if the offensive linemen give anything away. They got some tall guys now. I was walking around Disneyland, and I seen a couple of them walking and I was like, wow, they really are like 7 feet.

Q. How does that change how you play?
JONATHAN COOPER: It doesn't. I like the height difference. I like it, you know? It's not going to change me or how my brothers play at all.

Q. Javontae Jean-Baptiste, what have you seen with him his first year and how has he developed?
JONATHAN COOPER: He came in and he was a little bit smaller guy, smaller than the normal defensive end size, and he had to put on some weight before he could play.

But seeing him grow throughout these couple months with him, I mean, he's definitely matured. I feel like he's going to be a great player for us, and he's got something special in him. I relate with Javontae because I came in and I was, like, his weight. Credit he is taller than me, but I was his weight and I was going through what he's going through.

That's my little bro. I'm proud of where he's at right now and how much he's improved and how much he's matured as a player and as a person.

Q. What is Zach Harrison walking into?
JONATHAN COOPER: Zach Harrison is walking into Ohio State. He's walking into a place that's going to show him love, but also going to get after him, toughen him up. From what I've seen he's a great kid, and I think he's ready for it. I think he's excited to come here. We're excited to have him. I can't wait to get in that weight room with him.

Q. Did you enroll early?

Q. How difficult is that?
JONATHAN COOPER: It's difficult, you know, because you're going in and then you've got classes and weight lifting and you're a freshman so you have to find your way and what's going on, but I found big brothers, so I had like Tyquan, Jalyn Holmes, Sam Hubbard, Tracy Sprinkle, my big brothers. I latched onto them. They told me how to do it. I feel like Zach Harrison is going to do that to me and the others.

Q. What is the benefit, a lot of people say, of going right down the street to college? You're right down the street from your mom and dad. What's the benefit?
JONATHAN COOPER: One of the benefits is that you never get homesick. You know? You're right here at home. Granted it might get annoying for your mom wants you to come back every weekend, and you're like mom I'm in college, can't keep doing that! But it's great because you're at home. You feel like you're at home, and you know that even if it was a tough day or a rough day, you can go home and call your people or you can have your people bring you a hot meal if you need it, a home-cooked meal. There are a lot of benefits.

Q. You had other options. Was part of it -- obviously Ohio State is big-time football, but did you come close to thinking elsewhere just to get out of Dodge, so to speak?
JONATHAN COOPER: I did. I've been in Columbus my whole life and, I wanted I kinda wanted a change of scenery. But I'm a homebody guy. I can't just leave my family. I would get homesick really easy, and my mom would get really homesick and my sisters would start missing me, and I was like I can't do that to them. I have this great university right down the street, why not just go there.

Q. Be like Tua's family, just move with him?
JONATHAN COOPER: I don't know about that.

Q. What is your game plan this week? I was talking to Chase. He said he went back and had a meal and kind of chilled out, instead of going bowling. What is your approach? You want to see some sites?
JONATHAN COOPER: Yeah, man. I'm in LA. I've never been to LA before, never been to California. I want to enjoy the experience. I went to LA Live last night, walked around there, saw people ice skating. I never been ice skating before, I might do that. I'm just here to enjoy the experience because I mean, not a lot of opportunities come like this, you know? Number one is to win the game, of course.

Q. Number two is ice skating?
JONATHAN COOPER: I don't know about ice skating.

Q. You've had plenty of time to see Washington now. What have you seen from their offense? Where are they good? Where do you think you have an advantage?
JONATHAN COOPER: I feel like they're good in the run game, the pass game, they run a lot of trick plays. They can throw you off in the game. I guess definitely a momentum changer so we have to be on our jobs and know what we're doing on each and every play, our eyes in the right places because I think one time you think the ball is going this way it's going in the total opposite direction.

They have three really good running backs, a good quarterback, a solid offensive line, but I feel like with the skin that Coach has lined up for us, and the way we've been playing the past couple of weeks, I feel like we can get after 'em in a lot of different ways, and I feel like we're going to see that.

Q. Have you seen a lot of trick plays in practice, then?
JONATHAN COOPER: Yes, sir, yes, sir, got to.

Q. How did you guys do against them?
JONATHAN COOPER: We're doing good, we're doing good.

Q. What do you don't do well?
JONATHAN COOPER: What do we don't do well?

Q. How much do the coaches get after you?
JONATHAN COOPER: They get after us all the time but I don't think I'm allowed to say what we don't do well.

Q. This being Urban's last game, you guys have a lot of fifth year senior captains and the emotion of that, knowing so many guys are going to play their last game?
JONATHAN COOPER: It's sad, but I mean, of course you want them to see -- see them succeed in the NFL. We want to send out Coach Meyer the right way. He's been here, he started this legacy. He's been the greatest coach you could ask for, you know, to come in and change everything like he did and make everything better. I'm sad to see him go, but I know he has to take his health into consideration, and I'm happy for that, and I know that Coach Day will come in and do the -- take it and run with it. He will do a great job.

Q. Jonathan, do you have a favorite memory or moment with Urban?
JONATHAN COOPER: Favorite memory or moment with Coach Meyer? (Chuckles.) There's a lot of memories I have of him, but I would just say when I first met him -- wow, that's my alarm! (Laughter.) I didn't know I was going to be up this early! (Laughter.)

When I first met him, when I was a recruit, I walked in there with my mom, sat down, he's just a cool -- I didn't know what to expect. I'm like, okay, this is Coach Meyer, what's he going to do? And he's like, "Are you sure you want to come here? It's going to be tough, it's going to be hard." And I was like, "Yeah, no, of course, of course, I got it." He said, "You seem confident." And it's like, "I am!"

And the first couple of weeks I was like, okay, this is what it is! There's a lot of memories I have of Coach Meyer, man, he's just a great guy. I can't think of one in particular right now. But, yeah, I know the guys are all going to be feeling the same way when that game hits zero.

Q. What about those first couple of weeks that were such a shock?
JONATHAN COOPER: There is no way to prepare for it. You can train as hard as you want in high school and think you're ready and think you're in shape but I mean, Coach mic, he will get you right. So there is kind of no way -- you can prepare and stuff but physically you will never know what you're going into until you go through it.

Q. Jonathan, what do you know about Zach Harrison?
JONATHAN COOPER: I know he's a great kid. I know that he's a hard worker, and I know he is an extremely talented football player. I can't wait to get to know him better.

Q. How excited were you guys when he announced that you're adding another 5-star talent?
JONATHAN COOPER: Really excited. I thought it was great addition not only because of that 5-star talent, but because every time he comes in he seems respectful, seems like a great, overall kid. I'm excited to see him, excited to have him, excited to work out with him, pick his brain a little bit and start that brotherhood.

Q. What's going to be his biggest challenge adjusting to Ohio State?
JONATHAN COOPER: I feel like his biggest challenge would be, you know, managing everything around you, like you are going to be by yourself, you're going to have to go to class, nobody is going to be on you like that, go to class, you have to do your work! You have to go to football, make sure you do your work there, you gotta be everywhere on time, at least 10 to 5 minutes early, you gotta wake up really early. I mean, it's just the college life.

College football life I feel like is just going to be the hardest adjustment for him.

Q. You know what it's like to be a local guy, 5-star credentials going in to put on that jersey, you don't know any other way but is it a different pressure you think? Do you feel you are at another level when you're playing for the home school, so many people around you have been wanting you to go to Ohio State and all that stuff?
JONATHAN COOPER: Yeah, there definitely was pressure. Being the hometown kid it can definitely add pressure, because everybody expects more of you, I mean, but I feel like when it comes to football players, nobody holds us to a higher standard than we do yourselves, and I know with that pressure that came I just knew if I trusted and kept working hard and trusted my coaches that I would be in the position that I am right now.

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