Throughout the first ten practices of fall camp for The Nebraska Cornhuskers there are players making early impressions on the coaching staff. With so many open position battles on the defensive side of the football it is vital for coaches to put the right players in the right positions. Today we look at three defenders whose stock is rising heading into the season.
Three Defensive Players On The Rise:
1) DE Randy Gregory
The sophomore junior college transfer has caught everyone’s attention early in camp. He has the size, speed, and athleticism to be a game changer for Nebraska. The defensive line has struggled the past few seasons, but Gregory could be the guy who makes duel threat quarterbacks think about which side of the field to scramble to. If Gregory continues to improve over the next few weeks, he could easily be in the starting lineup on August 31st.
2) LB Jared Afalava
The Nebraska Cornhuskers need at the linebacker position is well documented. As we pointed out last week, linebackers are getting snaps at all three positions. Afalava is one of the players that has been mentioned frequently by the coaching staff, and the redshirt freshman could be working his way towards the top of the rotation at linebacker. He is strong and has the size to make an impact at Buck.
3) LB Josh Banderas
It might not take long for Banderas to climb out of his fathers shadow. The Lincoln Southeast standout is already being noticed by Bo Pelini. After last last nights practice, Steve Sipple of The Lincoln Journal Star tweeted a quote from Pelini about Banderas.
True fr. Josh Banderas is playing middle LB, Pelini says. “He takes control. He has all the right attributes to be a very, very good MIKE.”
— Steven M. Sipple (@HuskerExtraSip) August 14, 2013
While it is unlikely that Banderas will be a starter at the beginning of the season, it might hint that he will see plenty of playing time in 2013.