Player Profile Series: Randall Joyner

Our player profile series continues with a look at LB Randall Joyner!

Randall Joyner

Position: Linebacker

Size: 5-10, 236

High School: Carrollton Newman Smith

Classification: Senior

2012 Review: Randall Joyner had a surprising breakout season for the Mustangs last year. He took over as the full-time starter after Cameron Rogers suffered an injury in Week 5 and began making plays for the defense immediately.

Joyner started eight games for the Mustangs and finished the year with 93 total tackles, which was good for second most on the team.

He was named C-USA Defensive Player of the Week vs. UTEP in Week 8 when he had 14 tackles and two interceptions. Joyner also had a 12-tackle game vs. Rice in Week 11. For the season, he finished with two forced fumbles and two fumble recoveries while always playing with a lot of passion and heart. With that attitude, he quickly became one of the leaders of the SMU defense and was named to the C-USA all-academic team.

Grade: A-

2013 Outlook: Joyner is expected to have another terrific season next year and has already earned all-AAC preseason honors. He has shown he is a natural leader that will play hard on every single snap for the Mustangs. His ability to make plays in the backfield will have a major impact on the team's run support and coverage, even if he doesn't rack up a ton of sacks.

Coaches say Joyner is incredibly smart and has a nose for the football, which makes him a terrific compliment to Kevin Pope at inside linebacker. Coach Mason has shown complete trust in Joyner in the past so expect him to do even more next season. With another year under his belt, he should have enough game experience to be able to read and get off blocks quickly to make more plays that produce little to no gains.

Joyner has a chance to be the most productive player on the entire defense next year. He has played in 40 games as a Mustang in his career, but this will be the first season he is looked at to produce and lead from Day 1. Expect Joyner to play hard on every down and take some of the younger linebackers under his wing this season. He has been waiting for an opportunity to shine, and this will finally be his year to do it.

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