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Spring Review: Linebackers

Position-by-position analysis of NIU football after spring practice

Welcome to the latest edition of "Spring Review." Today, we'll take a look at who came out ahead, which linebacker needs more work and what you can expect for fall camp.

Linebacker was one of the deepest positions last season for Northern Illinois, and after spring football concluded, that remains true for the Huskies.

Depth actually was a concern of the coaching staff before the start of spring, but moving Spencer Williamson down to linebacker from safety and Victor Jacques from fullback to middle linebacker alleviated those concerns. Jacques impressed immediately with his athleticism and tackling ability and has put himself in a position to see a good amount of playing time as a backup.

The linebackers as a whole are an experienced group, led by Alex Kube, Phil Brown, Cory Hanson and John Tranchitella and will be counted on to improve on what they did in 2008.

Most improved: Alex Kube

Pat Schiller was another player considered for this, but Kube is so far ahead of where he was last season, which wasn't bad by any stretch, it's easy to see why the coaches are relying more on him this year. Kube makes better plays on the ball, causes more turnovers and has a much better understanding of how to play linebacker in his second year at the position.

Need to see more: Cory Hanson

Hanson is a good linebacker but has the potential to be better. He'll be solid this year for the Huskies but he has the athletic ability to do more.

Incoming recruits: Devon Butler, Tyrone Clark, Jordan Delegal

Video interviews:Tracy Claeys (4-23), Alex Kube (4-2)

Next Spring Review: Defensive backs


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