Ryan Shazier vs. Manti Te'o: Making a Case for the Buckeyes Linebacker

Austin KempAnalyst IDecember 7, 2012

Oct 6, 2012; Columbus, OH, USA; Ohio State Buckeyes linebacker Ryan Shazier (10) celebrates in the first quarter against the Nebraska Cornhuskers at Ohio Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports
Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports

The whole country knows who Notre Dame's Manti Te'o is. The amount of attention the Fighting Irish's linebacker gets on television is incomparable, and rightfully so. 

However, let me throw another name out there: Ryan Shazier. Ever heard of him? The Ohio State Buckeyes linebacker has cemented himself as one of the best in the country, and it's time that he gets recognized for his play.

The 6'2 sophomore linebacker from Plantation, Fla, put up numbers this season that Te'o failed to reach. Both players led their teams in tackles, but Shazier recorded 115 against Te'o's 103. Shazier's five sacks outweighed Te'o's 1.5.

While Te'o had 11 passes defended and forced zero fumbles, Shazier had 12 passes defended, forcing four fumbles. So why didn't Shazier get an invite to New York City for the Heisman Trophy Ceremony

Before answering that, take into account one more statistic: Shazier had a whopping 17 tackles for loss, where Te'o only recorded 5.5 for the year. Heck, Shazier even scored a touchdown this season.

The Notre Dame linebacker is one of the best in the country and is off to being a Top 10 pick in this year's NFL draft. But many of the stats say Shazier had a better season as a linebacker.

Some things just can't be explained. Buckeye Nation, though, will be treated to some exceptional linebacker play by No. 10 over the next couple of years. 

A huge 2013 season awaits this soon-to-be junior linebacker when the Buckeyes take the field on Aug. 31 against Buffalo.