OSU

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de­fen­sive end Nick Bosa.

“I thought I was the only one who heard it, but they were ac­count­ing for Nick every time,” Baker said. “Like they were ac­tu­ally say­ing where he was (lined up). That was shock­ing to me be­cause he’s a young guy, and the whole of­fense was ac­count­ing for where he was.”

It likely will be the same Satur­day night when the Buck­eyes play at Ne­braska. The Corn­huskers run a pro-style of­fense. Pass pro­tec­tion is vi­tal for quar­ter­back Tan­ner Lee, and Ohio State’s de­fen­sive line, kept fresh by ro­ta­tion, has been on a tear of late led by Bosa.

“The guy comes to play every play,” Ne­braska coach Mike Ri­ley said.

“You just love foot­ball play­ers like that. They’re hard to play against, but you ap­pre­ci­ate that kind of pas­sion.”

But as Bosa said, to zero in on him is to miss the big pic­ture. In line coach Larry John­son’s sys­tem of rolling in fresh line­men, there are times when Bosa is on the field, times when he is not as Sam Hub­bard, Tyquan Lewis and Ja­lyn Holmes get their turns among the ends.

In such a sys­tem, in­di­vid­ual statis­tics are sac­ri­ficed in fa­vor of re­lent­less pres­sure.

“I’m not go­ing to have a 20-sack year like I ob­vi­ously would want, but I’m happy for all my guys,” Bosa said. “I know that Ty, Sam and Jay are all go­ing to get drafted and go do big things.”

He be­lieves he could be fea­tured more next year when the other three are in the NFL, but there’s

no dis­put­ing the im­pact of the fresh-bod­ies ap­proach.

It bore fruit on a strip sack Bosa had last week of Mary­land’s Max Borten­schlager, when Baker picked up the fum­ble and scored OSU’s first de­fen­sive touch­down of the sea­son. Bosa hadn’t seen the play call so he just bull-rushed to the quar­ter­back. All four of the top ends were on the field, and while Hub­bard and Holmes ran a “Tex” cross­ing stunt on one side, Lewis and Bosa were sup­posed to do some­thing sim­i­lar on the other side.

As it turned out, Hub­bard al­most got to the quar­ter­back, too, Bosa said, and added “It looks re­ally good with every sin­gle per­son just get­ting off the ball su­per fast and win­ning.”

All four also were on the field when Lewis, the Big Ten’s 2016 de­fen­sive line­man of the year, lined up at nose guard and rushed al­most un­touched to a sack while Bosa — “97!” — got dou­ble-team at­ten­tion from a guard and a tackle.

“It’s pretty cool if one of us gets dou­ble-teamed be­cause some­body else can go make a play,” Bosa said.

Mak­ing plays fu­els his pas­sion, and Bosa ex­pects it to be en­hanced when he plays at Ne­braska’s tra­di­tion-rich Memo­rial Sta­dium for the first time.

“I love a good hos­tile en­vi­ron­ment,” Bosa said. “Even though we lost to Penn State (on the road), it was pretty cool last year. And then Wis­con­sin was cool. … It’s just cool, see­ing so many fans wear­ing the same thing and go­ing crazy.”

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