Previewing the Class of 2009: Linebackers

Linebackers Coach (and Def Coordinator): Brent Guy

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Previous 8 years coaching experience: HC, Utah State ('05-'08); DC, Arizona State ('01-'04)

Its no secret that Defense has been an achilles heel for the Cards over the past few seasons. As Defensive Coordinator, Ron English made noticeable improvements in recruiting and on the field during his one year stint last season before moving on to take the head coaching job at Eastern Michigan. Since then, another DC was hired...and then he transferred before anyone knew his name. The new DC and fourth man to fill the position in 14 months time, Brent Guy, has experience coaching teams with high-powered offenses and so-so defenses, including stops at Boise State and Utah State. If you glaze past his Kragthorpe-esque tenure as HC of Utah State, Guy has had some prior success as DC at Arizona State, where he coached now-Baltimore Ravens DE Terrell Suggs. Hopefully, he's returning to his niche in Defense and we'll see some progress in the development of promising prospects such as MLB Mike Privott, OLB Jacob Geffard and OLB Horace Miller. Guy's biggest win so far was witnessing new Secondary Coach, Larry Slade, successfully woo Miller away from UNLV and convincing Privott to honor his commitment to UL after English bailed. Hey, we'll take wins where we can find 'em; Moral victories--It's happening here.

*** #51 MLB Mike Privott (5' 10", 230) Lake Taylor HS; Norfolk, VA

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Favorite Player: Ray Lewis

Why he signed: Ron English, Trager Center (facilities) and opportunity to get some PT his freshman year. Privott was recruited by English and after he left, those close to the program, including Jody Demling, thought Privott was gone. But credit Slade for closing the deal.

The skinny on Privott is that he's a gamer who makes up for lack of size with long arms, quick feet and a nose for the football. Undersized at 5'10", the freshman must prove himself through adaptability, agressiveness & energy in practice to get a shot at playing time this year...but that's not completely out of the question, especially if the injury bug hits the LB corps. He played in a 3-4 scheme in HS but will likely be listed as a Middle or "Mike" LB in UL's 4-3 scheme. Like most recruits, he's going from being the Big Man On Campus to being buried on the depth chart...if he eagerly accepts his role and learns the 4-3 system, he has the potential to be one of UL's top 3 recruits in the 09 class.

 

 

 

 

 Tip of the hat: Shannon at Cardinal Dominance, Jody Demling, Scout.com, Rivals.com, and Google

** #33 OLB Horace Miller (6'1", 207) Dunbar HS, Baltimore, MD

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Best Known For: Setting a Maryland state record by recording 29 sacks his Senior year

Hates: Halftime; Miller: "Why do we need a break? I just want to keep playing."

Why He Signed: Larry Slade's connections in Baltimore (Slade started recruiting Miller when he was still the defensive backs coach at Tennessee in '08) and opportunity for early PT

Miller joining UL's 09 recruiting class was a suprise, according to Jody Demling, who announced Miller's decision to sign with Louisville back in late January after Miller originally committed to UNLV a month prior. Miller is accustomed to winning--he led a defense that won 3 consecutive Maryland state champsionships, racking up 46 sacks and 223 tackes over his last 2 years as a starter. He also won the 2008 SPARQ Championship in football, scoring the 2nd highest SPARQ rating ever recorded (162.93). SPARQ which is called the "SAT for athletes", is a sport-specific tool used to measure overall athleticism and tests Speed, Power, Agility, Reaction, and Quickness (SPARQ) over a series of drills.

Though only a 2-star recruit, many people are high on Miller's HS success and ability to compete at the college level. Louisville's starting LB corps is fairly cemented this year but with injuries, Miller could find himself fighting for 2nd or 3rd on the depth chart and I wouldn't be surprised to see him starting by the end of his Sophmore year. If Louisville experiences another mediocre season as most have predicted, Miller will need to maintain his focus and attitude after enjoying so much success in high school.

Horace Miller, Dunbar junior highlights (via mloveday5)

Tip of the Hat: Rivals.com, Jody Demling, Google
 

** #13 OLB Jacob Geffard (6' 3" 186) Northeast HS; Oakland Park, FL

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Hates: That his name is misspelled on the uoflsports.com team roster in this story...multiple times.

Nickname: Thing 2 (after the blue-haired "things" from the Dr Seuss classic The Cat in the Hat)

Geffard was recruited/signed by former DC Bill Miller, which is a pretty impressive feat given Miller's brief tenure, especially in lieu of the offers from Minnesota and Iowa State he could've ran back to after Miller left the program. He's tall, lean, runs a 4.5 40 but probably needs to gain some weight to make an impact as a Linebacker on this team (he's 20 lbs lighter than the next lightest Cardinal LB). He mostly played Strong Safety in HS but is rated 60th by scout.com at his projected position at UL, Weakside or "Will" Linebacker. He won something called "The Punisher" award during his last 2 seasons in HS, so fans should expect copious amounts of ass-kicking, explosions and Wild Turkey consumption. He'll be joining his twin brother Isaac--a Safety whose nickname is Thing 1--who was also signed by the Cardinals in this year's class. Judging by the photo above, the kid's in shape and won't be finishing last during suicides at practice.

Tip of the Hat: UofLsports.com, scout.com, Jody Demling, Rivals.com, Google

*** denotes 3-star recruit

** denotes 2-star recruit

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