On importance of the seniors on defense:
The seniors are everything. They’re the ones that established the leadership. They’re the ones that go out and show everybody how hard we have to practice, how hard we have to study. Those are the guys that when things get hard, people kind of rally behind. Those guys are the most important guys on the team…those are the guys you rely on to teach the younger players how to do it the right way. Those guys are really important.
On his emotions for the Penn State game and Senior Day:
I don’t think I’ll think about it too much. Especially in the big games, coming into Wisconsin I thought the same thing. Just getting around my guys, I’m really happy to be there and excited for the opportunity to go against such great defenses and such great teams…It’s definitely going to be crazy. It’s been a long journey.
On what it’s meant to come back after his injury:
I couldn’t have dreamed of a better senior year.
I’ve never been around a group of guys that have been so fun to be around. On the field, a lot of time we’re smiling, we’re laughing, we’re having fun no matter what’s happening. We never fight, we talk things through. It’s been fun to be around those guys and develop that sense of brotherhood that even I haven’t felt in my five years here to that level.
I’m willing to do whatever it takes to win games. It really is whatever it takes to win every game. When coach needs me to do certain things or the team needs me to do certain things, I’m willing to do it. It really is whatever it takes to win every game.
There’s always room for improvement. I think that’s one of the beautiful things about our defense. There’s still a lot of things we need to work on. We need to be disciplined.
On Chase Young:
Outside of him being a great football player, he’s a great person and a great leader. As far as how Chase has handled that situation, he handled it beautifully. I’m proud of him.
On if he considers Penn State to be a rival:
Definitely. They give us their best shot every time. It’s been back and fourth. I was here in 2016. We were down in Happy Valley and lost. We came back and had a chip on our shoulder, and ever since then I fell like this group, the senior group, had a chip on our shoulder since then since we’ve seen it, we’ve felt it.
On utilizing multiple Tight Ends:
It’s really awesome. Going into the game you know that you have three other guys that can come in and do a good job. You can really go in and just give it a give it your all because you know you got guys behind you that can come in and fill in for you.
On facing the best group of receivers they’ve seen so far:
I do think they’re a talented group as far as the big plays they’re able to create. KJ Hamler, I know he’s like lightning in a bottle. So we just really have to be detailed in our technique and guarding him, and I think that with the players we have out there we’re really confident that we’ll be able to have a good showing.
On truly being tested:
We have a sense that it’s going to be like that every week. We just play as hard as we can and if it gets to a certain point, that’s when they take us out of the game. This game especially we just got to give it all we got. We always have that fourth quarter mentality, so I’m not worried about playing the whole game, neither are any of the 11 guys out there on the field. We’re just ready for this game. This is what you come to Ohio State for, so we’re ready for the four quarters.
On playing a 4-quarter game:
I just feel like we’re ready for that moment. We’re ready for four quarters games and stuff like that. So that’s what that’s what we try to say, and we just got to be prepared when that time comes.