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Ohio State will be without standout linebacker Ross Homan for a few weeks, while another key defensive contributor will miss time with a foot infection.
Buckeyes coach Jim Tressel said Homan, a senior and three-year starter, will miss several weeks with a foot injury sustained in Saturday's loss to Wisconsin. Homan leads Ohio State with 41 tackles and has recorded an interception, a forced fumble, a fumble recovery, four passes defended and a sack.
Freshman Christian Bryant, who plays the "star" position, a safety/linebacker hybrid used in Ohio State's nickel package, is being treated at Ohio State Medical Center. Bryant's father, Ronnie, told The Cleveland Plain Dealer that his son has cellulitis, a common bacterial infection that can become serious if left untreated.
"He had an infection last week and we thought we had it under control and he played a little bit in the game and then he had a not very good reaction to it on the plane ride back," Tressel said. "It doesn't look like he'll be out of [the hospital] until late this week, and [we] just want to make sure that we get that calmed down."
Bryant had been elevated to a starting role after Tyler Moeller suffered a season-ending torn pectoral muscle. Tressel said Bryant will miss Saturday's game against Purdue.
Jon Newsome will likely fill in for Homan on Saturday, while Aaron Gant and Nate Oliver will replace Bryant in the nickel package.
Adam Rittenberg covers Big Ten football for ESPN.com. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.