How Ohio State uses the BUC stunt

Stopping the run is essential to any top tier defense and in 2018, Ohio State was no exception. By utilizing stunts like the BUC stunt, a stunt where the D-tackle and D-end laterally shift to the A and B gap, Ohio State's D-line was able to stuff UNLV's running attack and win the game. Below is my analysis on what Bosa (the D-end) and Jones (the D-tackle) did right and wrong with their BUC stunt.

Here is the full clip I will be referring too..

1) No tips

The most important part of any run stunt is to make sure that the O-line doesn't know your stunting. If they know, they can position themselves to get you out of your gap. In this instance, Jones, the D-tackle does a great job here of not showing any keys the O-line can pick up on. He has a square stance, normal alignment and his weight is distributed evenly. On the other hand, Bosa, the end, is a little too tight and is leaning quite a bit inside. These are both indicators that he may be stunting.

2) Slightly backed up

Most of the time we want the D-line to be as close to the line of scrimmage as possible; however, when you are run stunting, you want to be slightly off the line. Being off the line gives a D-lineman enough space to make a lateral movement without having the O-lineman knocking you off your track. Bosa does a great job giving himself enough distance off the line without being obvious. In contrast, Jones puts himself in a bad position by lining up too close to the line of scrimmage.

3) 1st step lateral

To get into the inside gap, you need to gain distance laterally with your first step. Bosa does a great job of taking a lateral step with no false or bucket step. Jones, on the other hand, doesn't gain enough lateral distance. This gives the o-lineman an opportunity to cut off his path to the A gap. Another common mistake you'll usually see with this 1st step is the D-lineman will pick up and put down their foot in the same place, this is called a bucket step.

4) 2nd step vertical

Once you've taken your lateral step, it's now time to get up the field and get vertical so you can disrupt the play with your backfield depth. Bosa does this really well. He steps straight up the field with tight alignment to the O-lineman's hip. This prevents the O-lineman from holding him and recovering. The situation is a little different for Jones. Because he aligned too close to the line of scrimmage, he now has to take a 2nd step horizontally. This is not a good situation to be in.

5) Rip the backside arm

Ripping your backside arm will make it even tougher for an O-lineman to recover once you've taken your 2nd step. Even though Jones does technically rip, it's not very effective because he's getting pushed down the line by the O-lineman. He is working to get his hips around, which is good, but the O-lineman may have too much of a jump on him. Bosa's rip isn't great either. Thankfully, he has great vertical penetration already so he is able to get into the backfield easily.

6) Redirect to the play

Once you're vertical and you've ripped your backside arm, you need to locate the ball. Bosa makes a great correction toward the ball after his 2nd vertical step while Jones is still working to get his hips around while the O-lineman holds him. I can say this from experience, having a 300+ pound man hanging on you dramatically decreases your chance of making the play.

7) Make the tackle

lf you don't make the tackle what has this all been for! Bosa does a great job making a huge tackle for loss by accelerating through the running back, getting low and wrapping up. This puts his team in great position for 2nd and 3rd down. Jones, on the other hand, is getting driven back because the fullback has joined in on the fun. He could have potentially recovered from bad initial alignment by getting his hips around, but the double team makes it really tough for him to do this.


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- Craig

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