With Te'o gone, who is this year's best linebacker?
But what about the defensive side of the ball?
The equivalent here would be the middle linebacker – the guy that anchors the front seven and leads the defense from all standpoints.
Despite the overwhelming controversy that surrounds him, former Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te’o was the most important piece to an Irish defense that found much success in 2012.
Not only did he lead by example, but he was an idol for underclassmen to look up to and set a standard for themselves.
That said, here is a list containing linebackers that I believed are poised to have breakout seasons on the field, including those that line up on the outside.
10. Dion Bailey, USC
9. Ryan Shazier, Ohio State
8. Lamin Barrow, LSU
7. Trent Murphy, Stanford
6. Adrian Hubbard, Alabama
5. Denicos Allen, Michigan State
4. Anthony Barr, UCLA
3. Christian Jones, Florida State
2. Kyle Van Noy, BYU
1. C.J. Mosley, Alabama
10. Bryce Hager, Baylor
9. Yawin Smallwood, Connecticut
8. Shayne Skov, Stanford
7. A.J. Johnson, Tennessee
6. Erik Kendricks, UCLA
5. Greg Blair, Cincinnati
4. Trey Depriest, Alabama
3. Chris Borland, Wisconsin
2. Andrew Jackson, Western Kentucky
1. Max Bullough, Michigan State
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