Updated: Feb 15
B.J OJULARI (DE)
16 TOTAL TACKLES
1 FF (vs Mizzou)
1 FR (vs Florida)
-3 QB HURRIES
Though his production faded in the second half of the season, B.J Ojulari was still a rampant pass-rusher throughout the campaign, earning top Pro Football Focus (College) marks next to LSU's stunning freshman Eli Ricks....in fact, Ojulari led the nation as the highest graded freshman after the first half of the campaign.
Yes, he faltered statistically due to inconsistent performances and even fewer on-field appearances, however the freshman was must-see-TV every time he came on the field.
Even while failing to register a sack or tackle for loss vs Miss State in week 1, Ojulari finished the game as the highest rated freshman defender in the country....an awesome illustration of his many powers.
He didn't need to sack the quarterback to prove effective, whether that was shedding blockers to stop Bo Nix from a 1st down run, deflecting passes at the line, sometimes Ojulari's mere presence influenced rare big plays for the LSU defense...such was the known threat of #8's abilities off the edge.
B.J exploded into the national Tiger consciousness when, with the LSU defense's backs against the wall in their own red zone, he deleted Missouri's Connor Bazelak for a huge sack-fumble, obliterating the freshman into the atmosphere while the exacting full-throated force sent the ball careening from Bazelak's grasp....LSU recovering the football.
But it was his next game which would be most remembered, perhaps as 2020 LSU's most pleasing all-around outing.
Grabbing 4 solo tackles and adding 3 sacks (a "sack-trick"), Ojulari was rampant and frenetic in the pass rush, dipping, swimming, barreling through, no matter what any offensive tackle or left guard tried to do, the weak side defender broke through nearly every time, sustaining savage pressures and laying brutal hits.
Although he's only a freshman, Ojulari has already ascended to the level of LSU record breaker: his single game 3 sack mark ties him at 2nd behind Chuck Wiley's 4.0 sacks back in 1995, also against South Carolina.
After his big South Carolina evisceration, B.J didn't grab another sack, however his pressures increased, he deflected a pass, his tackles per game slightly grew & B.J made some incredible plays, including a fumble recovery vs Florida during LSU's first half turnover-deluge.
You really need to watch his pass-rushing abilities in slow-motion...over again and again...it's something to behold....B.J is doing things I haven't seen any other defensive end even think of trying...
He bends his body further, recovers his speed and physicality under duress unlike any other DE....he's a scary good prospect who's already fulfilled the hype which followed his every move this off-season.
Now...what about the awesome hype for LSU's 2021 D-Line?
GAYE...FARRELL....MAASON....OJULARI could be our starting base front four...that's just the tip of the DL options for next year, then there's ANDRE ANTHONY (leading sacker), SAIVION, LOGAN, EVANS, FONUA, JACKSON, WEBB & CARTER as our depth contributors....can you just imagine?
Everyone wanted to see how this young Nigerian prince would adapt to the speed, intensity and unrelenting brutality of the SEC...
But now we'll be watching to see if the SEC can adapt to Ojulari's freakish greatness....
READ 2 LSUODYSSEY.COM EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEWS WITH B.J OJULARI:
by LONN PHILLIPS SULLIVAN
Copyright 2021 Uninterrupted Writings Inc LLC
SHOUTOUTS: B.J Ojulari is a "nastypiece"