Breakdown: Linebacker

In the next part of our 'Breakdown" series we take a look at the linebackers.

Last Season It's always a good sign when your top three tacklers on the team are linebackers. Ben Moffitt, Patrick St. Louis and Stephen Nicholas were a dynamic trio last season. Moffitt led the team in tackles with 96, while St. Louis had 89 but was also one of the main vocal leaders on the defensive side of the ball. A lot of the credit for the success of the linebackers should go to the defensive line. Without those guys tying up the opponent's offensive line, it wouldn't have allowed for the USF linebackers to fly around and make plays.

One guy who lived up to the hype this year was Stephen Nicholas. Before the year started he was named to the Butkus watch list. Nicholas did not disappoint, coming out of the gate against Penn State with 5 tackles, 2 sacks and a forced fumble. It says more about the type of player he is when his best games come against the toughest opponents on the schedule. The Miami game gets overlooked because of the loss, but Nicholas may have been the best defensive player on the field that day, he combined for 8 tackles (3 for loss), a sack, fumble recovery and a forced fumble. Bull's fans should be thankful their on-the-field leader is staying for one more year.

Nicholas will get another shot at Pat White next year.

Who's Returning
Everybody. This should be an exciting year at the linebacker position. Not only will they be better, but it's another year of having all three starters lineup next to each other once again. Also look for backup Brouce Mompremier to step in and see more playing time. Brouce is lightning in a bottle, but it will probably be another year until he has the opportunity to really showcase his skills.

Incoming Freshman
Linebacker was a need coming in to the recruiting season, but with three, three star recruits that need was met. Alonzo McQueen from Jacksonville, LaBrandon Glover from Pensacola and Sabbath Joseph from Miami, make up this year's linebacker class. Glover was a major steal in this group. After his sophomore year Glover was the number one ranked linebacker in the state by Larry Blustein of He had a solid junior season, but strained his MCL before his senior year. The big schools lost interest and he committed early to Miss. St. After a USF visit and a falling out with the Miss. St. coaches, Glover committed to USF. Although the injury didn't keep him out of games, it did linger all season and caused his stats to fall off from his previous years. This was a plus for USF and now they have the guy they wanted all along.

Joseph will most likely move to safety.

Talk about it On Message Boards

Bulls Daily Top Stories