Ohio State football defensive coordinator Jim Knowles is a Broyles Award semifinalist

Over the last few years, the one aspect that has held Ohio State football back has been its defense.

Offensively, the Buckeyes have been outstanding during that stretch, but the defense has failed them. Last year it very well could have cost Ohio State a College Football Playoff notational title, and defensive coordinator Jim Knowles went to work this offseason to fix the issues.

It’s safe to say that he’s done what he set out to do. The Buckeyes are No. 2 in the nation in scoring defense, No. 3 in the country in total defense, No. 1 in team passing efficiency defense, No. 8 in third down conversion rate allowed — and the list goes on and on.

Knowles turnaround of the Buckeye defense has caught the eye of many, as he was named as a semi-finalist for the Broyles Award, given out annually to the top coordinator in the nation.

Ohio State has seen two of its previous assistants with this award, defensive coordinator Jim Heacock in 2007, and offensive coordinator Tom Herman in 2014. Hopefully Knowles makes it three later this year.

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Story originally appeared on Buckeye Wire