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Nebraska Cornhuskers Season Preview: Defense

Ciante Evans Nebraska Cornhuskers

Bruce Thorson – USA TODAY Sports

In 2012, the Nebraska Cornhuskers football team was was on the brink of an epic season; however, they left the fans disappointed in the end.

The Cornhuskers ultimately finished 10-4 on the season, but an annihilation by Wisconsin in the Big Ten Championship Game and a loss to Georgia in the Captial One Bowl wasn’t exactly what Cornhuskers fans had in mind going into the end of the season.

The 2012 Cornhuskers’ defense was one of the better defenses in the Big Ten last season. They finished fifth in the conference in scoring defense, giving up 24.4 points per game, and they finished fourth in the conference in total defense, giving up 301.4 yards per game. While those are pretty good numbers, head coach Bo Pelini certainly wants them to improve.

It won’t be easy for the defense to improve, as they lost many key players from the 2012 season, and many new players will be expected to step up and be effective.

Jason Ankrah will lead a very young Cornhuskers defensive line that doesn’t have many overall starters returning amongst its players. Many redshirt freshman and sophomores are going to be seeing playing time early at these spots.

The linebacker position is virtually the same situation for the Cornhuskers, as three new starters will make a name for themselves this season. Sophomore David Santos showed signs of being a star as a freshman and will take the role of middle linebacker, while the outside spots are still up for grabs.

The secondary brings back some players who have experience with the Cornhuskers. Corner Ciante Evans is one of the best corners in the Big Ten and was a first-team All-Big Ten selection in 2012. Josh Mitchell also has starting experience and should be a solid player.

Erik Sargent is a college football writer for Follow him on Twitter @Erik_Sargent, “Like” him on Facebook or add him to your network on Google.