January 11, 2021
Miami, Florida, USA
Hard Rock Stadium
Ohio State Buckeyes
Alabama - 52, Ohio State - 24
THE MODERATOR: We're joined by Chris Olave, wide receiver from Ohio State.
Q. I think this might be the first game that both you and Garrett were under 100 yards receiving. Was the secondary doing anything maybe that you hadn't seen before to take you guys away? Or how did they make things difficult for you guys?
CHRIS OLAVE: They played a good game. Had some really good defense. Really good team over there, but they just played better ball than us today. And they came out with the win.
Q. Similar question, but the feelings now, obviously, you guys came in with high expectations with the way this year went and everything. To not have the offensive production you wanted, what's going on in your head right now?
CHRIS OLAVE: It was tough. I mean, we have high standards for ourselves, high standards for each other. We worked so hard in all the season to get to this point.
And we didn't play our best game today. It's tough. And it's a down moment, but just gotta soak it in and bounce back.
Q. To be with Justin for the last two years and to see him fight for you guys to get a season back and everything he did in the offseason, then to come out and play the way he did all year, what can you say about him, just getting to know him the last couple of years and playing with him the last two years?
CHRIS OLAVE: He's a warrior. I mean, that's a guy you always want on your team. He's a leader on and off the field. And people look up to him. And the season he had this year, the growth he had from last year, it's huge. And I've got all love and all respect for him. Can't wait to see him do big things.
Q. Trey was very important to what you guys wanted to do in the Sugar Bowl, and how it opened up some things for you down the field and Garrett. Losing him on that first drive as a receiver, a vertical threat, how much of a detriment was that to you guys?
CHRIS OLAVE: I mean, you see what he did the last two games. When we needed him the most, he gave us his best. And to see him go down in that first drive, it was tough for us. He's been going uphill ever since that Big Ten championship, and I wanted to see him do good in this game. And losing him was huge. And I think we felt that.
Q. What was it like, I guess, for the last two years to kind of grow alongside of Justin? I think several times last year we asked you guys about getting some things synced up and particularly the deep ball, but this year it just seemed like whenever you guys were on the field together you were in so sync. How did you kind of foster that over the last year to get to where you are this year?
CHRIS OLAVE: Last year, we were just out there trying to ball. But this year we kind of locked in. And he knew my body language. I know his body language whenever he was going to throw the ball to me. He knows when I'm going to break off a route or all that.
And going into this year I kind of wanted to read coverages and take my game to another level and know where to break my routes off and attack leverages and just try to be the best in the country. And we had a tough year, but we wanted to come out with this win, and it's tough but we made it and we're thankful.
Q. Where do you think you made the biggest, I guess, stride this year as -- not just as a team but an individual? You said you wanted to read defenses. We talked to you, obviously you wanted to get past the Clemson hurdle. What do you think you did this season than what you did the season before with Justin?
CHRIS OLAVE: Individually, I feel like I'm faster. I put a little muscle on. And last year I was playing at around 180, 175. But this year I played at 185, 186. I felt way better out there, especially strength-wise, getting off press and getting into my routes more efficiently. And I felt like I had a good year and just gotta keep building.
Q. I know you probably didn't necessarily want to see a bunch of young guys on the field at the end because of the result, but seeing those freshmen receivers get out there and experience this game, what could that mean for them going forward? And what did you see from them when they were in the game there for a little bit?
CHRIS OLAVE: That's huge. I mean, I've got all love for the guys. And our unit is so close. We competed every day in the offseason, trying to make each other better, and to see them out there in their freshman year playing in a National Championship is huge.
And I know they're not going to forget this feeling. I saw the looks on their faces. And I hope they bounce back and I hope they work harder than ever in this next postseason.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports