Jim Knowles explains the 'most important' aspects of Ohio State's defensive philosophy
Ohio State’s defense has been incredible this season under DC Jim Knowles.
The Buckeyes have yet to give up a touchdown more than 2 yards this season, a fact when brought up to Knowles prompted him to knock once on the wooden podium he was standing at.
Despite Ohio State’s incredible defense this season, the Buckeyes have not logged a lot of sacks on their QB pressures. In fact, OSU sits 2nd to last in the conference with just 5 sacks on the season thus far.
ESPN BET is now live in Ohio
Bet $1 on Ohio State-Minnesota, Get $250 in Bonuses. Must use promo code SATURDAY to get your $250 bonus.
But that doesn’t seem to concern Knowles. Instead, he told reporters that he’s more focused on limiting explosive plays and getting off the field on 3rd and 4th downs.
Jim Knowles on the most important parts to games when it comes to defense. Sacks are great but are not the most important things to defense.
“Eliminate the explosive plays, win on third and fourth down. So that is what we got to continue to focus on.” pic.twitter.com/mRvjJnDm5r
— Lantern Sports (@LanternSports) October 3, 2023
Knowles also added that when he was younger he would have been more concerned with sack statistics.
And the numbers back up this statement from Knowles. Of course, pressuring the quarterback is important, but Ohio State’s pass defense numbers are 2nd only to Penn State, which is allowing just 136 passing yards per game through Week 5. Ohio State is sitting at 146 passing yards allowed per game.
Of course, the Buckeyes haven’t exactly played the sharpest quarterbacks in the country minus Notre Dame’s Sam Hartman, who was held to just 175 passing yards last Saturday.
The Buckeyes will get another test this week against Maryland’s Taulia Tagovailoa, who currently leads the B1G in passing yards, passing yards per game and touchdowns. He’s done fairly well protecting the ball too, sitting at just 3 interceptions on the year.
The Buckeyes and Terps face off Saturday at Noon on FOX from Columbus.