For much of this summer and for as long as anyone with ties to college football, the linebackers have been the emphasis of the Penn State defense.
Thus far, Gerald Hodges has his name on almost every defensive award watch-list and Michael Mauti has become a true voice of the team throughout the sanctions and scandal.
So, where does that leave starting middle linebacker Glenn Carson?
Whether people realize it, Carson was one of the most efficient and sure tacklers on the team in 2011, coming in at fourth total in tackles (74) and forced two fumbles.
Now that Khairi Fortt has transferred out to Cal, the job is Carson's to lose and it doesn't look like that will happen this year.
The 6'3'' junior not only has the skills to perform at a high level, but he also possesses the smart mind necessary to be a successful member of "Linebacker U."
Carson boasted a 3.29 cumulative GPA coming into the summer and was rewarded for his efforts with a Academic All-Big Ten nod at the end of the 2011 season.
Bottom line, Carson is a bright, instinctive linebacker who will step up for the Lions this fall, even if all the press gravitates toward Hodges and Mauti.