It’s no secret that SEC defenses are particularly fast, athletic, and big. Well, LSU’s is no different. Coach Les Miles’ front 7 might be as big and athletic as they come.
They are led by middle linebacker DJ Welter, who is a kid that knows whats going on when he’s on the field. He’s an intelligent football player and knows what Miles expects from him. Welter is pretty average size for a linebacker and is second on the team in total tackles this year at 74.
The two outside guys are Alexander and Barrow. Barrow moves very well is space and is fast going sideline-to-sideline. He’ll create some problems in the middle of the field. Barrow led the Tigers with 86 total tackles this year. Alexander is a little undersized at 218 pounds, but makes up or it with his versatile play. He can blitz the passer, but he can also cover slot receivers in space.
This is a very talented linebacking core the Tigers have.
Their front four is full of some big boys that love to pressure that quarterback. They’re led by Jermauria Rasco who had 52 tackles this year and led the team with 4 sacks. My guess is this is the guy we’ll see talented left tackle, Brandon Scherff, block, which will be an exciting match up. At 6’3″ 309 pounds, Ego Ferguson plants himself in the middle of that line and pushes people around. Ferguson is the biggest of the four.
Anthony Johnson and Danielle Hunter round out the group. At 6’6″ Hunter has the ability to get up in the passing lanes and make it tough for opposing quarterbacks to get it to their receiver.
This should be quite the challenge for the Hawkeye offensive line. But, Iowa’s offensive line is so well coached and does so many things well, it should be a great match up to watch.
As a whole, this is a group that’s big and athletic. They are going to get in your face and will come with relentless pressure. They will rush the passer extremely well, but they will give up some big plays, which Iowa will need to take advantage of.