MTSU Players to Watch: Defense

The MTSU defense returns six defensive starters. Among them is draft hopeful Jamari Lattimore and all-conference safety Jeremy Kellem. We caught up with Blue Raider Zone Editor-in-Chief Kellen Farmer to get the run down on the Blue Raider defense. recently talked to Kellen Farmer, Editor-in-Chief of Blue Raider Zone to find out which players Gopher fans should be aware of before the September match-up between the Gophers and the Blue Raiders.

"The first name that comes to mind would be Jamari Lattimore," Farmer said. The 6-foot-3, 231 pound senior defensive end out of Miami, FL started all 13 games last year and is one of the leaders on the defensive side of the ball. "He is going to be our highest drafted player this season, he is the leader on the field and in the locker room and really important to the D-line."

Overall, the "defensive line is actually pretty weak as far depth goes," Farmer said. There is not much depth behind what Farmer calls "solid" starters. Keep an eye on Dwight Smith the 6-foot-2, 272 pound defensive tackle from Swainsboro, GA another senior who returns 12 starts from the 2009 season.

Moving back the the linebackers and you find the biggest question mark of the MSTU defense. "We lost our senior leader (from the 2009 team)," Farmer said. "basically like (the Minnesota) defense, nobody has started but they all have plenty of experience."

The secondary is where the MTSU defense shines. "I would say would be the strength (of the team)," Farmer said. "A lot of guys with a lot of experience."

One guy to keep your eyes on is senior safety Jeremy Kellem from North Lauderale FL. The 5-foot-10, 190 pound defensive back was first team all-Sun Belt in 2009 and is on the first team all-Sun Belt pre-season team and some consider a front runner for defensive player of the year, according to Farmer.

JUCO transfer, Pasadena, CA product Arness Ikner excelled last spring but doesn't have the experience of some of the others in the secondary, but is another name to remember.

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