Year of the Linebacker
If the recruiting class of 2007 became known as the "Year of the Quarterback," with
The Sunshine State might as well be the Linebacker State this year when it comes to high school prospects. Seven of the nation's top 20 linebackers hail from Florida this year with five of them committed to in-state programs.
Crawfordville (Fla.) Wakulla linebacker
Not to be outdone, Miami has quite the linebacker haul as well. The headliners are Homestead, Fla., outside 'backer
While three of the top four linebackers in the nation hail from Florida and will play their college ball in the Sunshine State, there are plenty of tackling machines elsewhere as well. Wichita (Kan.) Wichita East linebacker
Overall there are 14 linebackers in the national top 100 (all positions) for the 2008 recruiting year compared to only six last year. There are almost as many top-100 linebackers in Florida alone this year (5) as there were in the entire nation for 2007.
So who other than FSU and Miami are cleaning up at linebacker this year? Notre Dame, Michigan and Penn State all boast four top linebacker commitments. The Irish have two top-100 'backers in Chicago area standouts
Last year, national depth at linebacker was very thin, so it makes sense that 2008 is loaded -- these things are cyclical. If your favorite team doesn't get a stud linebacker this recruiting year, then something's not right.