Position series feature: Brandon Dunn

Cardinal Authority continues our position series features with a look at starting defensive tackle Brandon Dunn and his role of filling the void at nose tackle.

A product of Louisville's Pleasure Ridge Park High School, Brandon Dunn didn't have the luxury of a redshirt season. The lack of depth along the Cardinals front four in Charlie Strong's first year as the U of L head coach forced him into action early his freshman year. Dunn played in 11 games and 4 starts during his first year in the Red and Black and now four years later, he's become one of the team's top rush defenders.

During his career the 6-foot-3, 300-pound tackle has been called upon in run situations, logging 58 tackles, but with injuries to nose tackles Jamaine Brooks and De'Angelo Brown he'll be counted on more heavily this fall.

"We moved him inside and he's excited about it," said defensive coordinator Vance Bedford. "He's done a good job so far and we expect big things from him. He's a senior right now. He's been through the battles, so now it's time for him to step up and take charge of the defensive line."

When the injuries to Brooks and Brown occurred, Dunn approached Charlie Strong and volunteered making the move to the nose tackle position.

"It's still pretty much the same," he said of the transition. "You still have to be aggressive getting off your blocks and make plays."

Dunn had a breakout season a year ago, posting career bests of 28 tackles and a pair of sacks. His biggest performance was a 6 tackle effort in the Cardinals 45-35 victory at Pittsburgh.

As a senior, Dunn is also being counted on for leadership. With true freshmen De'Asian Richardson and Kyle Shortridge gaining added reps with the second team, Dunn understands that it's now his responsibility to help the newcomers gain an understanding of alignments and the Cardinal way of conducting themselves on and off the field.

"I have to show them the ropes by the way I practice and by the way I carry myself," he explained. "As long as I can help them out and show them how to be successful, we'll be okay."

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