Linebacker is a position where the Tigers return all experience of note, losing only career third teamer Daniel Andrews, former walk-on Steve Demaras and Colton Walls before he played a down.
Consistency and tackling have been the bugaboos for this group prior to 2011, but with the infusion of Stephone Anthony and Tony Steward the trend is pointing upward.
While Steward is recovering from injury and mired on the depth chart, Anthony came out of the spring as the starter in the middle.
Quandon Christian, Corico Hawkins and Tig Willard are all experienced linebackers and true freshman Travis Blanks is currently listed with this group as the Nickel Back.
Barring injuries the success or failure of this group won’t be based on experience as 3 at these positions have 827 snaps or more. Anthony’s 292 snaps equate to about 4 games, but he appeared solid, grounded and has star potential.
One of the more interesting story lines of the season will be how this group plays and performs with the change from Kevin Steele to Brent Venables.