I’ve mentioned some of the superlatives said about him earlier, specifically by Doug Worthington. Worthington, quick to mention him as a friend off the field, couldn’t help but make a comment about his thirst for violence on the field. Therein, he was depicted as “a monster”, “a man amongst boys”, and “a big bowling ball and strong as an ox”. In fact, he’s inflicted minor injuries on at 3 least 3 Buckeyes so far because of this nastiness. As far as I know, he’s the one responsible for injuring Robert Rose in what was apparently a one-on-one drill.
The longer the Spring has progressed, the more people are taking notice. Cue Thaddeus Gibson:
COLUMBUS, Ohio — Ohio State’s Thaddeus Gibson has some friendly advice for his fellow Big Ten defensive linemen this fall.
Don’t stand near the pile after a play, especially if Buckeyes left guard Justin Boren is in the general vicinity.
“He’s gonna knock your ass down,” Gibson said.
“Oh my God, he’s a crazy dude,” Gibson said. “It’s good to have him over there because we’re lining up and he’s screaming and cussing and [stuff]. He’s a good guy to have.”
Jim Cordle, one of two returning starters from last year’s atrocity at the position, has noticed how much benefit there is to having him emerge as a leader:
“Just from a brute strength perspective, he’s unbelievable,” Buckeyes senior right tackle Jim Cordle said. “He’s the strongest guy we’ve got on the team. You take a guy with the physical tools like that, and then he plays a little bit pissed off, which is kind of cool. It rubs off on everybody.
“He plays with a little bit of rage.”
The man whose life Boren has been entrusted to saving is also appreciative.
“He is pretty bad. I like how nasty he is. We need some offensive linemen to step up and be nasty. They will, too. They have to be ferocious on the field and take someone’s head off.”
“Fire, man. He’s nasty,” Pryor said.
The defensive front often has held sway in scrimmages, but Boren usually is mixing it up and playing to the whistle.
“We needed it,” Pryor said of that attitude. “When you’ve got that nasty, like (departed left tackle Alex) Boone — I loved Boone because he’s just nasty3. He’ll try to fight after every play.
“I don’t know what it is, but it’s like (Boren) is someone who is going to fight for you all day, all game. I like that.”
While I more than enjoy reading about Boren being an instigator and glorified berserker in the trenches, I’d hate for him to be the only one. Terrelle Pryor is right when he says “There’s some teams out there that are waiting for us… and there’s teams that we owe some stuff to. We’re just going to bring it.”. Terrelle has been doing his part, trying to emerge as a leader while simultaneously learning the game. Boren has evidently been doing more than his fair share of the work as well. Moreover, Boren has seemingly captured the mood that I want: F.T.W. Someone’s gotta pay4. Pryor knows it. Boren knows it. Thaddeus Maximus has seemingly internalized it as well. I’d love to read more of it emerging this Spring.