Category Archives: Inside Linebackers

College Football: Week 4 Notre Dame at Georgia

#7 Notre Dame Fighting Irish (2-0) vs #3 Georgia Bulldogs (3-0)

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NOTRE DAME FIGHTING IRISH | INDEPENDENT

Coach: Brian Kelly

Notre Dame Players to watch

*Junior QB Ian Book (6-0/208)

Book is 11-1 since taking over as a starter. He has a 6-0 TD/INT ratio after the first two games of ’19. Last year, he proved to be a better runner than expects and this year, he is the team’s leading rusher with 23 carries of 127 yards. Book’s strength is his pocket presence. Notre Dame averages close to 40 points per game with Book under center. If his OL gives him time, he’ll test the Bulldogs’ secondary.

Senior MLB Asmar Bilal (6-2/227)

Bilal replaces the departed Dru Tranquill in the middle of the Notre Dame defense. Bilal bring an instinctual awareness to the position, along with a physicality desired by HC Brian Kelly. physical presence in the middle. Bilal is second on the team in tackles heading into the Georgia game.

Senior DE Julian Okwara (6-5/240)

There was a lot of talk this off-season about Okwara’s potential to break Justin Tucks season sack record of 13.5. However, Okwara and fellow DE Khalid Kareem are off to a slow start in 2019. Through two games, Okwara and Kareem have combined for just seven tackles, two tackles for a loss and one sack in two games.  If Okwara has dreams of being a first round draft pick, this is the game he needs to show his maple moxie.

*Junior RG Tommy Kraemer (5-11/200)

Kraemer moved over from right tackle to play inside at right guard. His ability to pass protect and keep Book on his feet will be one of the keys to his game. The line has 4 returning starters , with over 60 career starts. So, far the running game hasn’t gotten going, so opening some holes against this Georgia defense and eating up the clock will be part of a successful game plan.

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GEORGIA BULLDOGS | SOUTHEASTERN CONFERENCE

Coach: Kirby Smart

Georgia Players to watch:

*Junior LT Andrew Thomas (6-5/320)

Should Thomas declare after his junior season, he’ll be considered can’t miss first round pick. His ability to keep opposing defensive ends off QB Jake Fromm is this strength. This Georgia OL is one of the best in the country and should make a push at the Joe Moore Award (Nation’s top OL).

*Junior QB Jake Fromm (6-2/220)

Fromm took over from an injured Jason Eason in 2017. The true frosh had a solid season. He played well enough that Eason transferred to Washington State. Last year, Fromm put up another solid season, but was overshadowed in by the emergence of Trevor Lawrence and stellar play of Tua Taguvailoa. Georgia has several tough games on their 2019 schedule, Fromm getting off to a strong start against #7 Notre Dame would be good news for Bulldog fans.

*Junior DE RB D’Andre Swift (5-9/215)

Swift has over 350 yards from scrimmage in his first three games. With the departure of Nick Chubb and Sony Michel, Swift is Georgia’s bell-cow in 2019. Georgia coach Kirby Smart recently said of Swift, “I think his biggest skill-set is making sure that other people are buying into the principles and values of the organization. … When Swift does that, that has a huge impact on the confidence of our team.” 

Senior RS JR Reed (6-1/195)

Since transferring from Tulsa, Reed has started 32 consecutive games at safety, showing a nose for the football (four interceptions, two fumble returns for touchdowns) and a hard-hitting style that has made him one of the team’s leading tacklers each of the past three seasons.

His father, Jake Reed, played a dozen seasons in the NFL as a receiver for the Minnesota Vikings and New Orleans Saints. He retired in 2002 with 450 receptions, 6,999 yards and 36 touchdowns.

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Dooley Field at Sanford Stadium – Grass
Sept 21 | Athens, Georgia

College Football: Week 1 Wisconsin at USF

#8 Wisconsin Badgers (0-0) vs University of South Florida Bulls (0-0)

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WISCONSIN BADGERS | BIG 10 CONFERENCE

Coach: Paul Chryst

Wisconsin Players to watch:

Junior RB Jonathan Taylor (5-11/219)

Jonathan Taylor rushed for 2,194 yards last year.

Taylor was named a 2018 All-American and the Doak Walker Award winner – given to the best running back in the nation. In two seasons at Wisconsin, Taylor has already run for over 4,000 yards. With junior, Jack Coan, winning the quarterback battle in the spring, expect to see a heavy dose of Taylor early in the season.

**Sophomore TE Jake Ferguson (6-5/250)

Last season, Ferguson was a pleasant surprise in an offense that struggled to consistently move the ball through the air. He caught at least one pass in all 13 games and finished as the team’s second-leading receiver with 36 receptions for 456 yards and four touchdowns.

During the offseason, Ferguson bulked up to 250. He’s counting on the added weight to improve his effectiveness as a blocker without compromising his speed as a route-runner.

*Junior OC Tyler Biadasz (6-3/322)

Last year, Biadasz was considered by many to be the best player on an offensive line that saw David Edwards go to the L.A. Rams; Michael Deiter was drafted by the Miami Dolphins; and Beau Benzschawel sign with the Detriot Lions as an UDFA. Biadasz will be looking to take home the Rimington Trophy in 2019.

***Sophomore ILB Jack Sanborn (6-2/232)

Wisconsin knows how to turn out pro-ready linebackers. Last year, Wisconson sent T.J. Edwards, Andrew Van Ginkel and Ryan Connelly to the next level. Sanborn played in 11 games last year as a true freshman. This year, he will be expected to fill the shoes of those who played before him. Wisconsin’s highest rated recruit of a year ago, Sanborn should post 80-100 tackles in 2019.

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UNIVERSITY OF SOUTH FLORIDA BULLS | AMERICAN ATHLETIC CONFERENCE

Coach: Charlie Strong

USF Players to watch:

Senior RB Jordan Cronkrite (5-11/204)

Cronkrite rushed for 302 yards against UMass in 2019.
Photo: Athlon Sports

The former Florida transfer was on a roll late in the 2018 season with five consecutive 100+yard efforts. Playing behind what looks to be an improved offensive line, Cronkrite hopes to match, or better, his 6.1 yards per carry from last year. With OC Kerwin Bell’s “Play fast, score fast” offense, Cronkrite could put up double digits in the end zone too.

Senior QB Blake Barnett (6-5/217)

Barnett, originally signed with Alabama, is a transfer from Arizona State. With one year under his belt in South Florida, he should post better numbers in 2019. At USF last year, Barnett completed 61.1 percent of his passes for 2,710 yards, 12 touchdowns; and he ran for 301 yards and eight touchdowns. With a new OC in town, look for a healthy Barnett to put up ridiculous numbers.

Senior RT Marcus Norman (6-6/305)

Two-time All-AAC Marcus Norman will anchor an offensive line that is much improved from last year’s unit. Norman is a seasoned veteran in the trenches, he enters the 2019 season with 34 consecutive starts. The Sebastian product has shown his skills in the classroom as well, having been named to the AAC All-Academic Team twice. He has already graduated with a degree in Information Security and is currently working on his master’s.

*Junior CB Mike Hampton (6-1/185)

All-conference honorable mention cornerback Mike Hampton (Tampa) shined as a sophomore in his first year as a starter, ranking ninth nationally with 18 passes defended (1.4 per game). He also posted posted 16 pass breakups, which stand as the second-most in USF history; he tied for second on the team with two interceptions; totaled 43 tackles (35 solo), 2.0 tackles for loss, and one sack.

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Raymond James Stadium – Grass
August 30 | Tampa, Florida

College Football: Week 1 Oregon at Auburn

#11 Oregon Ducks (0-0) vs #16 Auburn Tigers (0-0)

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OREGON DUCKS | PAC 12

Coach: Mario Cristobal

Oregon Players to watch:

Senior QB Justin Hebert (6-6/233)

Sep 22, 2018; Eugene, OR.; Oregon Ducks quarterback Justin Herbert (10) participates in warm-ups before playing the Stanford Cardinal at Autzen Stadium.
Photo Credit: Jaime Valdez-USA TODAY Sports

Herbert has the potential to be the #1 overall pick of the draft.

Herbert has thrown touchdown passes in 28 consecutive games, which is the longest active streak in the FBS. He might have been the number one overall pick in last year’s draft, but he decided return to Eugene for his senior season. In 2018, Herbert threw for 3,151 yards – it could have been a lot more, but his receivers dropped over 50 passes. Look for his numbers to improve in 2019. His Heisman hopes will depend, largely, on how far he can take his team in the rankings.

Senior WR Juwan Johnson (6-5/230)

Herbert will be looking for a dependable possession receiver in 2019. Johnson is a grad-transfer from Penn State, where he had over 1,000 career receiving yards. In 2018, he accounted for 17 first downs through the air, and in 2017, he turned 38 of his 54 catches into first downs. Herbert and Johnson connected three times on seven targets for 32 yards and a touchdown in Oregon’s spring game.

Senior LG Shane Lemieux (6-4/317)

“Shane continues to be the physical force up front,” HC Cristobal said during spring practice. “He’s a really impressive offensive lineman. His threshold for work is mind-boggling.” Like Herbert, Lemieux turned down a shot at the NFL last year. He returns as one of the top rated guards in this year’s draft class.

Junior DT Jordon Scott (6-1/330)

Scott is a huge run-stuffing nose guard clogging up running lanes with his girth and quickness. They call him the “mini-fridge.” Scott has played in 24 consecutive games. He finished 2018 with 29 tackles, including 14 solo, 3.5 for loss and one sack. He looks stronger and quicker in 2019.

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AUBURN TIGERS | SOUTHEASTERN CONFERENCE

Coach: Gus Malzahn

Auburn Players to watch:

Freshman QB Bo Nixon (6-2/204)

Bo is the son of former Tigers’ QB Pat Nixon.
Photo: Montgomery Advertiser

Nixon won one of the most hotly contested quarterback competitions in the nation: beating out Joey Gatewood, who has Cam Newton size, and the strong-arm of Cord Sandberg, a former minor league baseball player. Nixon will work under new OC Kenny Dillingham, who comes over from Memphis. Nix dominated at the high school level, where he set an Alabama state record for total offense in a career, becoming the first player to surpass 12,000 yards.

Senior LG Marquel Harrell (6-3/307)

When Auburn can run the ball at will, it wins a lot. When Auburn can’t run with consistency, it loses in bunches – that’s historically been true. While there is no clear cut starter coming out of spring practice. Harrell will lead the pave for whomever Malzahn decides will carry the load. Harrell has started 19 games over the last two seasons for Auburn, including 18 in a row. He has appeared in 30 games over the last three seasons after redshirting as a true freshman in 2015.

Senior DT Derrick Brown (6-5/325)

Brown is another player that could have easily entered the NFL draft after his junior year, but opted to return to play another seasons of Saturdays. Brown has 115 career tackles, so far, for the Tigers. In 2018, he amassed 48 tackles, 10.5 TFL, 4.5 sacks.

Junior DE Nick Coe (6-5/282)

Coe lines up next to Brown and plays the BUCK position for the Tigers. In 2018, Coe had 27 tackles, 13.5 TFL, 7.0 sacks for season (leading Auburn in that category). Look for Coe and Brown to put plenty of pressure on opposing quarterbacks in 2019.

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Jordan-Hare Stadium – Grass
Auburn, Alabama | August 31, 2019

College Football: Week 0 Miami at Florida

Miami Hurricanes (0-0) vs #8 Florida Gators (0-0)

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MIAMI HURRICANES | ATLANTIC COASTAL CONFERENCE

Coach: Manny Diaz

Miami Players to watch:

Senior MLB Shaquille Quarterman (6-1/235)

Quarterman is a three-time All-ACC linebacker.

As a true freshman, the Oakleaf High product racked up 84 total tackles, 10 for loss, 3.5 sacks and a fumble recovery for a touchdown: leading to freshman All-American honors. Durable and tough, Quarterman has started every game since he arrived at Coral Gables. Last year, as a junior, he tallied 82 tackles, 14 for loss, 5 sacks, and an interception. Over his career, Quarterman has been one of the most consistent and fundamentally sound linebackers in the nation.

**Sophomore TE Brevin Jordan (6-3/245)

New Offensive Coordinator, Dan Enos – lured to Coral Gables from Alabama – loves to incorporate the tight ends into the game plan. “He loves the tight ends,” said Jordan of Enos, “he loves to throw us the ball.” Jordan, a third team All-ACC selection last year, started 11 of Miami’s 13 games. He caught 32 passes for 287 yards and four touchdowns. Look for him to double those numbers this year.

*Junior CB Trajan Bandy (5-9/188)

As a Sophomore, Bandy enjoyed a breakout  season, starting all 13 games and earning All-ACC third-team honors. He posted career-high totals in tackles (36), tackles for loss (4.5), interceptions (three), fumble recoveries (two) and passes defended (eight). Bandy wore the new “Turnover Chain” five times, more than any player. Quick and instinctual, look for Bandy to play almost exclusively at nickel/slot this year.

Junior DE Jonathan Garvin (6-4/250)

With the departure of Joe Jackson(NFL), Miami will be looking for more production from the four-star defensive end. Garvin Started all 13 games opposite Jackson last year. He finished with 60 tackles, 17 tackles for loss, 5.5 sacks, two fumble recoveries and five PBUs. Garvin also added his first career touchdown on fumble return. He ranked fourth in ACC and second on team with 17 tackles for loss, and third on team with 5.5 sacks.

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FLORIDA GATORS | SOUTHEASTERN CONFERENCE

Coach: Dan Mullen

Florida Players to watch:

Senior DE Jabari Zuniga (6-4/257)

Jabari Zuniga (92) looks to step out of Jachai Polite’s shadow in 2019.
Photo: UFA | Jay Metz

Zuniga appeared in and started all 13 games last year, recording 45 tackles on the season. He finished second on the team with 11.0 tackles-for-loss, 6.5 sacks and four quarterback hurries. With a new defensive scheme in place this year, look for Zuniga to use his explosive power and quick first step to rack up double digit sacks.

Junior CB C.J. Henderson (6-1/191)

Regarded as one of the top cornerbacks in the entire country, new Defensive Coordinator Todd Grantham said C.J. Henderson is the definitely the best cornerback he’s ever coached. Henderson started all 13 games last year, racking up 38 tackles, five tackles-for-loss, three sacks, two interceptions, team-high seven pass breakups and two forced fumbles.

Junior QB Feleipe Franks (6-6/240)

Is this the year Feleipe Franks puts it all together? Highly touted out of high school, Franks arrived at Gainesville with prototypical size, a strong arm and endless potential, but has yet to turn those tools into production. However, Franks teammates are saying he’s found new confidence in HC Mullen’s system. Franks first must improve his decision-making and accuracy, while building on his ability as a running threat. He also might have to maintain confidence behind a rebuilt offensive line replacing four starters.

**Sophomore PK Evan McPherson (5-11/177)

Florida boasts one of the top special teams units in the country – and a lot of that has to do with placekicker Evan McPherson. McPherson was 50-50 last year on extra points; had a long of 48 yards; went 17 for 19 (89.5 percent) on field goals and led all freshmen in field goal percentage. McPherson was also Florida’s leading scorer with 101 points.

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Ben Hill Griffin Stadium – Grass
Gainesville, Florida

Inside Linebackers: Final Position Rankings

2019 NFL Draft:  Top Ranked ILBs

Devin White and Devin Bush are heads and tails above all the rest. They will be drafted high because of the lack of top notch talent below them. The Inside Linebacker position group is a lot stronger and deeper than the outside linebacker position group. From Walker to Wilson, you’ll find late second to fourth round players. And then a frenzy from the fifth to the UDFAs, where a whole bunch of these guys will find a home; athleticsm and the ability to play special teams will be key.

Ed Alexander (95) and LSU Tigers linebacker Devin White (40) make the sack.
Photo: Roy K. Miller/Icon Sportswire

1. Devin White, LSU, 6-0/237

White is well-built and hits like a hammer. He’s got football acumen and plenty of athleticism. Rare speed for a guy his size. Was college football’s top linebacker. Like a General on the field. Team leader. Community leader. He’ll end up being the face of somebody’s franchise. Could go as high as top five to Tampa Bay.

2. Devin Bush, Michigan, 5-11/234

Quick feet and hands help him sift through traffic. Like White, Bush is a physical, punishing tackler. Sideline-to-sideline speed. Aggressive upfield style of play suits him best.

4. De’Andre Walker, Georgia, 6-2/251

Sure tackler with plenty of size and strength making him a better fit on the inside. Likes to get in the mix and lower his pads and hit somebody. Quick to fill the hole. Looks like he could be a good blitzer at the next level and could also slide up to rush off the edge on occasion.

4. Germaine Pratt, NC State, 6-2/240

Pratt was a Senior Bowl standout. He was clocked at 20 mph on one play – which was faster than any other player on his squad (including running backs, wide receivers, corners and safeties). So, in short, Pratt has plays fast. Gets to the hole and fills fast. That’s what coaches like to see.

5. Bobby Okereke, Stanford, 6-1/239

Okereke is another guy that loves contact. Looks to blow opponents up with aggressive enthusiasm. Has enough athletic ability to drop into coverage.

6. Ty Summers, Texas Christian, 6-1/241

Summers wrapped up his college career with the second-most tackles (318) in the Patterson era. He had a frustrating senior season with an injury, but finished the season with 46 tackles, including 5 1/2 for loss and four sacks.

7. Cameron Smith, USC, 6-2/238

Smith has been called “your prototypical run-stuffing middle linebacker.” He has a background in wrestling which helps him against larger linemen. Very mature and self-motivated.

8. Mack Wilson, Alabama, 6-1/240

Has good closing speed in backside pursuit. Sideline-to-sideline range. Has the versatility to play any of the linebacker positions. Plays well in coverage and has enough speed to cover tight ends all over the field.

9. Ryan Connelly, Wisconsin, 6-2/242

Connelly has been recovering from a core muscle injury, but still showed well at the NFL Combine. He did everything but the bench press. Connelly is assignment sound. He is athletic enough to stay on the field for all three downs. He plays disciplined football. Lunch bucket kind of player.

10. Emeke Egbule, Houston, 6-2/245

Team captain. Shows good short area burst and downfield acceleration. Shifts well through trash, but is hesitant to take on bigger blockers. Hustles on every play. Could start career on special teams until he gets stronger.

11. Te’Von Coney, Notre Dame, 6-1/234

Coney is smaller than some of the other guys on this list in terms of weight, but his compact frame is idea for a middle linebacker. Will be most successful in a 4-3 with big tackles eating up blockers – leaving Coney to slip through the gaps and make the tackles.

12. Andrew Van Ginkel, Wisconsin, 6-3/241

Van Ginkel played DE for Iowa Western Community College and then FCS program South Dakota before transferring to Wisconsin and settling in at linebacker. He has enough athletic ability to make it the next level.

OTHER PLAYERS TO KEEP AN EYE ON:

  1. Cole Holcomb, North Carolina, 6-1/234
  2. Jahlani Tavai, Hawai’i, 6-2/250
  3. Otara Alaka, Texas A&M, 6-3/239
  4. Terrill Hanks, New Mexico State, 6-2/242
  5. Tre Lamar, Clemson, 6-3/253
  6. Joe Dineen, Kansas, 6-2/235
  7. Drew Lewis, Colorado, 6-2/225
  8. Dedrick Young II, Nebraska, 6-1/233
  9. Alex Figueroa, Central Oklahoma, 6-2/242
  10. Ulysees Gilbert III, Akron, 6-1/235
  11. Jordan Kunaszyk, California, 6-3/235
  12. Kyle Rachwal, Eastern Michigan, 6-3/240
  13. Kendall Joseph, Clemson, 6-0/233
  14. Tre Watson, Maryland, 6-2/235
  15. Curtis Akins, Memphis, 6-2/235
  16. Chris Peace, Virginia, 6-2/245
  17. Jeffrey Allison, Fresno State, 6-0/250
  18. Sterling Sheffield, Maine, 6-3/240
  19. Josh Smith, Vanderbilt, 6-3/240
  20. Rick Gamboa, Colorado, 6-0/240
  21. T.J. Holl, Colgate, 6-1/230

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Team Needs:

AZ | SF | NYJ | OAK | TB | NYG | JAX | DET | BUF | DEN | CIN | GB | MIA | ATL | WASH | CAR | CLE |MIN | TEN | PIT | SEA | BALT | HOU | CHI | PHI | IND | DAL | LAC | KC | NO | LAR | NE

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The 2019 NFL Draft will be held Thursday-Saturday, April 25-27 in Nashville, Tenn.

2019 Player Profile: Devin White, ILB, LSU

LSU Inside Linebacker Devin White possesses a nice blend of size, speed, aggression, instinct, and leadership. He’s built like an old-fashioned fullback. He flies to the ball like a heat seeking missile. He’s a reliable tackler and was the heart and soul of the LSU defense. White’s appears to be in the 5-11 overall draft range. It looks like he could go as high as number five overall to Tampa Bay, and probably wouldn’t fall any further than Cincinnati at number eleven.

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2019 NFL DRAFT: DEVIN WHITE | ILB | LOUISIANA STATE UNIVERSITY

Height: 6-0| Weight: 237 | Class: Junior | 40 time: 4.42

A former running back, White displays outstanding athleticism for a middle linebacker. He was named “permanent” team captain and and receives high praise from coaches and players alike. He was the centerpiece of LSU’s blitz-heavy defense under defensive coordinator Dave Aranda. With outstanding straight line speed and sideline-to-sideline range, he can chase down most any running back when in pursuit. He is agile and flexible enough to sift though garbage and is strong enough to disengage from larger opponents.

White is a built for impact and has some serious speed.

In his three years with LSU, White played in 34 games. He had 286 total tackles; 114 solo; and 172 assists. He had 28.5 tackles-for-loss and 8.5 sacks. He also had a interception, 9 passes defended, 3 forced fumbles and 4 fumble recoveries in his career.

In 2018, White was named the recipient of the Butkus Award, which goes to the nation’s best linebacker. A first-team All-American and All-SEC honoree, White made plays all over the field this season, registering 115 tackles, 12 tackles for a loss, three sacks, two forced fumbles, and two fumble recoveries. In LSU’s biggest win of the season, White was a beast racking up 13 tackles against Georgia.

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Check out the updated Position Rankings: QBWRDEDT, and more.

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(Updated) Team Needs:

AZ | SF | NYJ | OAK | TB | NYG | JAX | DET | BUF | DEN | CIN | GB | MIA | ATL | WASH | CAR | CLE |MIN |TEN | PIT | SEA | BALT | HOU | CHI | PHI | IND | DAL | LAC | KC | NO | LAR | NE

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The 2019 NFL Draft will be held Thursday-Saturday, April 25-27 in Nashville, Tenn.

New Mexico Bowl – Dec 15

North Texas Mean Green (9-3)  vs  #23 Utah State Aggies (10-2)

NORTH TEXAS  |  CONFERENCE USA

Coach:  Seth Littrell

North Texas Players to watch: 

Senior LB E.J. Ejiya (6-3/230)

No. Texas Lineback E.J. Ejiya
Photo: No Texas Athletics

Ejiya ranks fourth nationally in tackles for loss with 23.0 and leads the Mean Green in sacks with 9.0, which ranks fourth in C-USA. His 113 total tackles are also fourth most in the conference. 

* Junior QB  Mason Fine (5-1/180)

Fine was name CUSA Offensive Player of the Year for the 2nd year in a row.  He was also a semifinalist for the Davey O’Brien and Earl Campbell Tyler Rose Awards.  He was on watch lists for the Manning and Walter Camp Awards.  He was voted 2nd Team All-CUSA.

**Sophomore RB DeAndre Torrey  (5-7/186)

Torrey has been a touchdown machine for the Mean Green and ranks sixth in FBS in total touchdowns with 17. He is averaging 5.9 yards per carry, with 161 attempts for 942 yards and 14 rushing scores, while also providing a dynamic presence as a receiver out of the backfield. 

*Junior WR Rico Bussey, Jr. (6-2/208)

Bussey, Jr. leads the Mean Green in every major receiving category and is among the nation’s most productive receivers. 

Senior CB Kemon Hall (5-11/190)

Hall ranks third in FBS in passes defended (1.7 per game) and has posted five interceptions, two of which he has brought back for touchdowns

Senior CB  Nate Brooks  (6-0/192)

Brooks has 61 tackles, 3.0 of which are for loss, nine pass break-ups, a forced fumble, a fumble recovery and a quarterback hurry in 12 starts. Brooks has helped lead a ball-hawking group for North Texas, who have totaled 17 interceptions, which ranks fifth in FBS.

*Junior DE LaDarius Hamilton  (6-3/256)

Hamilton has been a force from his defensive end position for the Mean Green and is second on the team in sacks with 6.5 and 10.0 tackles for loss.

Senior PK Cole Hedlund  (5-10/166)

Hedlund was a semifinalist for the Lou Groza Award and is 19 of 22 on field goals, including a perfect 2 of 2 from 50-plus yards. 

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UTAH STATE AGGIES | MOUNTAIN WEST CONFERENCE

Interim Coach:  Frank Maile

Utah State Players to watch:

*Junior TE Dax Raymond  (6-5/245)

  Utah State TE Dax Raymond has accepted an invite the the Reese Senior Bowl.
Photo:  Salt Lake Tribune

Despite missing four games this year with a broken hand, Raymond earned honorable mention all-Mountain West honors after catching 25 passes for 335 yards (13.4 ypc) and two touchdowns. For his career, he has caught 70 passes for 863 yards (12.3 ypc) and three TDs.

**Sophomore LB David Woodward (6-2/230)

The 6-foot-2, 235-pound Woodward started all 11 games he played in — ranking first in the Mountain West and 10th in the nation with 124 tackles (11.3 pg). He is also fifth in the conference in tackles for loss with 12.5 (1.1 pg) and ninth in sacks with 5.0.

**Sophomore WR/RS Savon Scarver  (5-11/185)

Scarver has returned 21 kickoffs for 719 yards, including four returns of 50-or-more yards. His two kickoff returns for touchdowns (100 yards vs. New Mexico State and 96 yards at Wyoming) rank as the second-most in a single-season in school history, behind Kevin Robinson (three in 2007).

**Sophomore QB Jordan Love  (6-4/220)

Sophomore QB Jordan Love is 11th in the nation in points responsible for with 204 (17.0 pg); ninth in the nation in passing touchdowns with 28 (2.3 pg); 12th in the nation in passing efficiency (159.9); 21st in the nation in completion percentage (.658);18th in the nation in passing (267.3 ypg); 27th in the nation in completions (20.5 pg), and fifth in the MW and 28th in the nation in total offense (272.3 ypg).

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New Mexico Bowl Presented by Progressive
Utah State 52, North Texas 13