Knowles leaving Oklahoma St. for Ohio St.

Tough news for the Oklahoma State football team. Defensive coordinator Jim Knowles is leaving OSU for OSU -- the Cowboys for the Buckeyes.

Ohio State announced the news in a statement Tuesday.

“I have offered a position on the Ohio State football staff to Oklahoma State University defensive coordinator Jim Knowles and he has accepted it. Starting Jan. 2, Knowles will be the Buckeyes’ new defensive coordinator. What is most important at this time is that we put our players in the best position possible to finish this season with a win in the Rose Bowl. To that end, we will continue our planning and preparation for the game with our current staff of 10 assistant coaches.”

—  Ohio St. head coach Ryan Day

Knowles turned OSU into one of the best defensive teams in the country this season. The Cowboys rank third in the nation in total defense and eighth in scoring defense. They allow less than 17 points a game. OSU is also first in the country in both sacks and tackles for loss.

Knowles was a finalist for the Broyles Award given to the best assistant in the country, and, on the same day it was announced he was leaving Oklahoma State for Ohio State, Knowles gave a speech at that ceremony before the news broke of his new job.

Several OSU defensive players responded on social media to the news of Knowles leaving the Cowboys for the Buckeyes.