7 a.m., yawn.
But that's when Urban Myer took over full reins of the Ohio State football program early Tuesday morning with a team meeting less than 15 hours after the conclusion of the Gator Bowl in Jacksonville, Fla., Monday afternoon.
Although officially hired Nov. 28, Meyer - other than going on a successful recruiting blitz - has sort of stayed in the background until the bowl game -and yes, it was another loss to the SEC - was over before taking complete control of the Buckeyes.
The 45-minute meeting was ''intense and to the point,'' according to someone in attendance, wrote Doug Lesmerises in The Plain Dealer of Cleveland Wednesday, with Meyer's ''primary request'' being a ''100 percent commitment from everyone involved to his plan and the desire to 'win now.' ''
I remember those early mornings when I was in school at Ohio State, especially when taking Woody Hayes' coaching football class at 8 a.m. sharp three days a week.
When I say sharp, I mean sharp. If you weren't inside the classroom door by 8 o'clock, Woody would shut and lock it. If you were late, you were locked out - no excuses. That was his first lesson before class even started.
The trouble was Woody only taught the class once a year during winter quarter (January through March), so as not to interfere with the football season in the fall and spring practice. Usually, winters in Columbus can be pretty nasty and I lived all the way at the opposite end of campus from St. John Arena, where the class was held. It was a pain sometimes to get up and get going that early in the dead of winter, but I was never late.
I guarantee you, no one wanted to be late. Since most of us taking the class were on the football team, we never would have heard the end of it from Woody when the door opened 48 minutes later.
But Monday's performance was just a microcosm of the entire almost-surreal season. Ending the season losing four in a row is never good. But looking back on it, with a little more - and diversified - offensive punch here and there, the Buckeyes possibly, maybe, could have won any of the final four.
The defense really only broke down completely in the second half at Nebraska after OSU had built a 27-6 lead. The Buckeyes, though, did play Big Ten front-runners Michigan State (10-7), Wisconsin, Penn State (20-14) and Michigan (40-34) tough and close, but came out with only one win on a dramatic 40-yard touchdown pass by quarterback Braxton Miller with 20 seconds to play to pull out a 33-29 victory over the eventual conference champion Badgers.
Nevertheless, a 6-7 record is nothing to brag about as Ohio State suffered through its first losing campaign since 4-6-1 in John Cooper's initial season in 1988 as well as its first seven-loss year since going 1-7-1 way back in 1897.
I can't wait for next season to start -anything's got to be better than what transpired both on and off the field for the Buckeyes in 2011.
Contact Steve Hemmelgarn at email@example.com