Landers showed a knack for making those kind of plays last season, his first on the field for the Buckeyes. He had 7 ½ tackles for a loss in 2016. He has three this season. He’s just one part of perhaps the strongest position unit in college football.
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While J.T. Barrett was the single biggest star in the comeback victory, throwing three of his four touchdown passes in the fourth quarter, the defensive line’s dominance helped turn the tide. Penn State ran seven plays on its last two possessions and lost nine yards.
“We just stayed true to ourselves,” Landers said. “Up front, we got off the ball. We played aggressively. We tried to establish a new line of scrimmage. It wasn’t about getting out of our element or doing anything special for Penn State. We just played Ohio State football.”
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The defense held Penn State to 10 points in the second half after giving up three touchdowns in the first half. However, Penn State had only one extended touchdown drive (seven plays for 81 yards) in the first half. A turnover and a long kickoff return set the Nittany Lions up for two other scores.
“We know throughout the course of a game we’re going to face adversity,” Landers said, “no matter who you’re playing, where you’re playing. We didn’t let it get to us. We didn’t let the score get to us. It was a matter of, ‘It’s time to go back on the field. Let’s go make a play.’”
Ohio State at Iowa, 3:30 p.m., ESPN, 1410