College Football 2012 Top 150 Players: No. 98 Baker Steinkuhler Nebraska DT
Every day here at Your Best 11, we are counting down to the start of the regular season with our top 150 players for the 2012 season.
No. 98: Baker Steinkuhler, No. 55, Nebraska, Defensive Tackle
First and foremost, his greatest strength is his strength. He is a solid, strong player in the middle that does all of the things asked of him. Steinkuhler is a big body with a good wingspan that holds the point of the Nebraska defense well.
Despite Jared Crick being injured for the bulk of 2011, Steinkuhler was able to be a productive piece of the defense.
The rising senior is not the stat-machine at the defensive tackle position that we have seen from guys like Ndamukong Suh, but he is extremely good at his job of occupying offensive linemen and allowing his linebackers to flow fast to the football.
Steinkuhler is a great player from a "fit" standpoint. He does exactly what you want out of your nose in a 4-3 scheme. Unfortunately, his athletic limitations and that "fit" mentality are also his greatest weaknesses.
Nebraska loses Lavonte David and that means they are adding some inexperience at the linebacker spot. The Cornhuskers need to get more out of Steinkuhler, but unfortunately he is not the type of player that does "more" from a playmaker standpoint.
He will give the Cornhuskers his best performances, but his ceiling as a player does not allow for the playmaking the Nebraska defense is going to need out of the interior of their defensive line.
Baker Steinkuhler is going to do his job on every play for the Cornhuskers. It will be on the other pieces of the defense to match his level of consistency in order to play as a cohesive unit.
As for his individual production this season, Steinkuhler will be in the running for the defensive line spots on the All-Big Ten team. Kawann Short, Johnathan Hankins and William Gholston will likely have better stats, but Steinkuhler most certainly has the ability to put his name on the list with theirs.
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