Arizona's most experienced unit on defense next season is its linebackers and with that experience comes high expectations.
Jake Fischer is one linebacker that is going to play a major role on next year's squad and that role will likely be increased due to the departure of R.J. Young and Trevor Erno.
"It is hard to replace guys like that, but I don't think we will skip a beat," Fischer said. "We have all of our linebackers back and the majority of our defensive backs. I don't think we are going to miss a beat at all."
While Fischer had nothing but good things to say about those two players, he did admit that having a slim depth chart in the spring can be challenging.
"Right now we are only two deep, but the guys that are here want to play for Arizona are still here," he said. "The guys that are still here are great guys that work hard every day.
"We have an idea of who is going to be exactly the top two on the depth chart and everything. Losing a couple guys that talented is a big loss but the guys that want to be are here are."
Arizona's defense is coming off a season in which it struggled a bit towards the end. Fischer says that the way the season ended last year will be motivation for the upcoming season.
"We are going to use that as motivation, but this is a new year and a new team," he said. "We are going to try to write our own chapter."
Part of that new chapter will be written by freshmen, as Arizona will have three newcomers competing for a spot at linebacker next season.
"I would give them the same advice I received, which is that it is going to be a little faster, but just get your nose in the book," Fischer said. "The coaches are going to be looking for the young guys that are trying to learn as opposed to just going out and playing.
"They want to see who is trying to learn the system and who is starting to get the concepts down, because you never know, any one of us can go down and they might have to move in."
Depth may be a concern, but Fischer also believes that some of the younger players will step in and impress.
"There are a lot of guys that did not get to play a lot last year," he said. "There are a ton of new faces, but they look really good so far and we have only had a few practices, so I am excited about it."
Fischer excited about defense
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