Greg Schiano Breaks Down How Ohio State's Nick Bosa Is Being Blocked And Discusses His Heisman Odds

By Derrick Webb on September 10, 2018 at 2:27 pm
Nick Bosa

In its first two games, Ohio State's two wins have come by an average margin of 47.5 points. And in those two contests, All-American defensive end Nick Bosa has played 72 snaps, sitting out for most of the second halves against both Oregon State and Rutgers.

But in about one full game's worth of action, Bosa has been as dominant as ever, recording nine pressures, three sacks, two quarterback hits, nine tackles, two recovered fumbles and a defensive touchdown.

Bosa has faced consistent double teams in each of the Buckeyes' wins ... and still hasn't slowed the slightest signs of slowing down.

However, Rutgers showed Bosa different looks than Oregon State in the hopes of halting his disruptiveness. Ohio State defensive coordinator Greg Schiano expects that trend to continue as the season goes along.

"He's not getting a ton of one-on-ones. If you saw Saturday, Rutgers started their tight end out wide and motioned him down and really cracked him once pretty hard," Schiano said. "So Nick is going to have to be aware of that. We are going to have to be aware of that because I think it will get more and more creative every week because he is such a special player."

How does Ohio State counter its opponents attempt to keep Bosa out of the backfield? 

"We need to do a good job of moving him around and not just leaving him in one spot because then you can target him, right? But if you put your tight end out there to bring him in and all of sudden he's not there, it gets hard to block him," Schiano said. "So we need to help him and he needs to be a little bit more aware; his teammates need to help him. When there's someone motioning that's in a position to crack him, we have to let him know because they are doing things special for sure."

Bosa is, of course, heralded as the leader of one of the best defensive line units in the country. Ohio State's opponents will have to pick which Buckeye to block as Bosa lines up next to defensive tackles Robert Landers and Dre'Mont Jones as Chase Young patrols the opposite ends spot.

After Saturday's 52-3 win over Rutgers, Landers said that group feeds off each. But make no mistake ... it's Bosa leading the battalion.

"He's playing at a high level, very high level," Schiano said of Bosa. "He affects ... as an offensive coach, you're going to know where he is all the time. There's other guys out there, too, and that's the beauty of it when it comes to rushing the passer."

Nick Bosa's Career Statistics
2016 12 17 29 7.0 5.0
2017 14 19 34 16.0 8.5
2018 2 7 9 5.0 3.0

During Monday's press conference at the Woody Hayes Athletic Center, Schiano was asked about Bosa's Heisman Trophy odds. He admitted it was a long shot.

"I'd love to say, yeah, let's get a defensive player in there. But I think there's been one in how many years? The reality is it's more of an offensive award because it's easier to chart," Schiano said. "It's easier to make a big deal of touchdowns and rushing yardage and passing yardage, and I understand that. Nick is a dominant player in college football right now for sure. There's awards for that, as well."

The last primarily defensive player to win a Heisman trophy was Michigan's Charles Woodson in 1997.

Schiano said for Bosa to have a shot at the trophy, it'd take a year where "no one really had tremendous stats offensively."

Still, there's always a chance; even if it's a longshot. But for now, Schiano's just happy to have Bosa on the same sideline.

"I like him on our team," Schiano said. "I know that."

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