The Marty Smith Podcast: Former OSU Linebacker Joshua Perry Talks Winning the 2014 National Championship, Recalls Marty Covering Their Team

by Chris Haney

The boys are back this week with another great episode of The Marty Smith Podcast, and we’re welcoming former Ohio State Buckeyes linebacker Joshua Perry to the show to talk college football. Perry was part of OSU’s 2014 National Championship team, so we had to revisit his university’s title run that year. Plus, the linebacker remembers Marty covering Ohio State for ESPN and recalls some of his initial thoughts on our host reporting on the Buckeyes football team.

To start out the podcast this week though, Marty, Wes, and Travis all share their go-to karaoke songs. We’re sure you guys would love to hear them each belt out a tune on the podcast, but you’ve been spared… for now. Marty did share that if his blood alcohol content level is high enough, you might hear him singing one of two songs if you catch him at a karaoke bar. Those two songs are Eric Church‘s “That’s Damn Rock & Roll” and Kenny Chesney‘s “She Thinks My Tractor’s Sexy.” You have to admit that would be entertaining to witness.

The guys also have an amusing conversation about their struggles putting together furniture, toys, or really anything. Therefore they end up searching YouTube for tips on how to accomplish the task at hand. Also, you’ll want to stick around until the end of the podcast. In honor of country singer Luke Combs‘ appearance on College GameDay on Saturday, Wes downs a beer at 9:30 a.m.

Yet the heart of this week’s The Marty Smith Podcast is our conversation with national champion Joshua Perry. The 6’4″, 250-pound linebacker was an integral part of the Buckeyes title during the 2014 season. He’d go on to play for three NFL teams during his short stint in the NFL before retiring because of injuries and concussion concerns. Since his 2018 retirement, he’s worked as an analyst on the radio and with the Big Ten Network as his media career continues to take off.

Of course, during the interview, the guys talked to Perry about his championship run while at Ohio State. He opens up about the OSU and Michigan rivalry and how much it means to each school and their fans. He recalls our host Marty Smith covering his team while in college and shares his opinion on NIL deals. We’ve got that and so much more with Joshua Perry on the newest episode of The Marty Smith Podcast.

Joshua Perry Chats About OSU’s Championship Run in 2014

Early on during their conversation with Joshua Perry, host Marty Smith asked the former OSU linebacker about the Buckeyes’ most recent national championship. In 2014, Ohio State took down Alabama in the CFP Semifinal before steamrolling Oregon for the title. Marty called the Buckeyes players that year “an unbelievably special group of men and an unbelievably destined group of men.”

“Take us back to that team and that locker room, and what made that team different?” Smith asked his guest.

Perry started out by reminding listeners that OSU went 24-0 between the regular seasons of 2012 and 2013. However, a really good Michigan State team knocked them out of championship contention after they beat OSU in the Big Ten Championship. It was Ohio State’s first loss in two years after sitting out the 2012 postseason because of NCAA sanctions. Two more losses would follow, including their home opener against Marty’s Virginia Tech Hokies early in the 2014 season. But then the team came together, locked in, and went undefeated the rest of the season.

“Just a few guys in that locker room said, ‘This is not who we are. This is not what this university is, and we’re gonna figure out how to turn this things around.’ We just went to work and the wins started stacking up,” Perry explained.

“After we beat Alabama, we knew we won the national championship,” Perry continued on The Marty Smith Podcast. “It didn’t matter if the New England Patriots were coming out on the other side in Dallas for the championship game. We had won it because we beat Alabama. So it’s a story of ups and downs, it was dreams and nightmares all at the same time. It was a heck of a thing to be a part of. And I’m just glad that i get to be a footnote in the media guide saying I played on that team and made a couple tackles.”

Joshua Perry Recalls Meeting Marty Smith for the First Time

During our interview with Joshua Perry, host Marty Smith got into his experiences covering Ohio State in 2014. It seems like Marty has been a staple of ESPN’s college football coverage for decades. But eight years ago, OSU was the first elite team he covered for the four-letter sports network. Producer Travis Rockhold attended Ohio State and had to know if Perry remembered first meeting Marty and asked about his initial impressions of the reporter.

“When Marty walks into the Woody [Hayes Athletic Center], what’s you guys’ first reaction seeing him for the first time?” Travis asked. That got a laugh out of everyone, including Marty himself who said it was a great question.

“It’s funny, and this is no shade to Marty because I respect the heck out of him. But I’m like , ‘Who is this country red-headed dude talking about [football]?'” Perry hilariously answered. “Marty is one of the most genuine guys. He didn’t feel like a reporter who is just there for the story. He didn’t feel like a guy who is just there to do a job. You could tell that he was invested in representing our story arc with responsibility and the way it needed to be represented. And I think that’s important. People lose sight of that sometimes, especially when you’re handling a brand as big as Ohio State and some of the names we had there.”

“It was great to build the relationship,” Perry added. “Marty is as fun and lighthearted as anybody in the business too. So, there were a lot of laughs, a lot of good times… But at first, it was like, man, you got a country guy over here in the Midwest. This should be good.”

The guys talk about that and much more with Joshua Perry on the newest episode of The Marty Smith Podcast. Make sure to check out the entire podcast in the link below, or listen to their full conversation on Spotify, Apple, or wherever else you listen to your favorite podcasts.