Buckeye Leaves: Penn State

It wasn't supposed to be this close but Ohio State needed some standout performances to be able to survive Happy Valley with a 31-24 win in two overtimes. So who were the players who delivered those showings to get the Buckeyes the win? BSB picks our standouts in this edition of Buckeye Leaves.

Ohio State survived Penn State with a 31-24 victory in two overtimes, producing a number of standout performers. Who were our players of the game, though? BSB gives out our Buckeye Leaves.

Kane Anderson: I tried my darnedest to think of someone other than Joey Bosa to give my Buckeye Leaf to, but there really is no other choice. In an ugly game in which nobody played perfect, Bosa saved the Buckeyes. His first solo sack could have been a game ender if it weren't for a roughing the passer penalty on Curtis Grant the next play. But in the second overtime Bosa would not be stopped, pushing his blocker into Christian Hackenberg for a sack. Bosa didn't even have to touch Hackenberg. That was incredible.

Ryan Ginn: Who else but Joey Bosa? (Please picture me shrugging as I write that.) Redshirt freshman quarterback J.T. Barrett had some words for Bosa after the game that can’t be printed, but the gist of it was that he’s happy that Bosa is playing for the Buckeyes. After tonight, I think most of his other teammates and fans would be inclined to agree. The Sunshine State product would almost certainly be a first-round pick if he were draft-eligible next spring. Luckily for Ohio State fans, they’ll get another season and a half of the monster defensive end making game-winning plays.

Matthew Hager: It was J.T. Barrett’s worst statistical night in some time, but he still gets my Buckeye Leaf. When the game was on the line, Barrett came through. He played a huge role in both of Ohio State’s overtime touchdowns, and he did so after tweaking his knee in the first half. The game film won’t be taken to the College Football Hall of Fame, but it was one of those nights that will be remembered fondly if Ohio State can win the Big Ten.

Marcus Hartman: This has to be Joey Bosa. His sack ended the game, and his individual talent helped lift the Buckeyes on a night they had a hard time getting anything going on either side of the ball. His versatility is irreplaceable for a defense still growing into a new scheme. Sometimes someone just has to make a play, and he did it. Honorable mention: Ezekiel Elliott.

Jeff Svoboda: It's cliched but I have to go with Joey Bosa. When the Buckeyes needed a man-among-boys play to win the game, Bosa delivered it by completely blowing up the Nittany Lions' final chance. His postgame edition of "Bosaing" will probably be remembered for quite some time. Of course, that wasn't all Bosa did, as he -- as usual -- was the main thrust of the pass rush for the Buckeyes, finishing with 2.5 sacks among his six spots. The Florida native is exactly what the Buckeyes thought they were getting when they brought the five-star player in. I don't usually give honorable mention, but how about Joshua Perry and his 19 tackles, and J.T. Barrett with his two OT touchdown runs?

Blake Williams: Joey Bosa would be an easy choice, and he played amazing, but I am going with Cameron Johnston. The sophomore had six punts, nearly half the total he had on the season entering the game, averaging 45.0 yards per punt. He downed four of those inside the 20, giving Ohio State the field position advantage throughout the game. The bomb he had downed on the 1-yard line was a beauty at the most important time.

Who do you think should be so honored? Let us know in the Ask The Insiders forum.


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