For the past two seasons, opponents of the Carolina Panthers have had lots of trouble game planning against the monster of a middle linebacker Carolina has. It comes as no surprise that Jon Beason was a product of the University of Miami.
The Hurricanes have produced many great linebackers throughout the years, including Ray Lewis, Dan Morgan, Jonathan Vilma, Jessie Armstead, and Darrin Smith, to name a few.
Jon Beason is entering his third season in the NFL. In 2009 he led the NFL in solo tackles with 110 and was third in the league in total tackles with 138. He also recorded three interceptions and a fumble recovery in 2008.
Beason was born on Jan. 14, 1985 in Miramar, Fla. The High School he attended was Chaminade Madonna College Preparatory School. There he played football as a fullback, strong safety, and linebacker. As a fullback he rushed for 811 yards and 12 touchdowns as a senior. He also recorded 75 tackles and five interceptions. He was also the starting power forward for the basketball team and ran track.
Beason was a highly recruited football player out of high school at three different positions: FB, DB, and LB. After an intense recruiting battle involving FSU, Florida, Tennessee, LSU, and Georgia, he decided to play at the University of Miami. In is freshman season, Beason played the first two games at full back before ending the season with a shoulder injury. Beason received a medical red-shirt.
In 2004 Beason appeared in all of Miami’s games. He played mostly middle linebacker early in the season, but the last four games started at outside linebacker. He totaled 29 tackles and a sack as a redshirt freshman.
2005 showed a lot of promise for Beason, as he started the entire season at weak-side linebacker. He finished the season with 64 tackles, 44 solo. His biggest game came in the season opener against FSU, where he registered 11 tackles.
Beason’s junior season was stellar, as he continued to progress into a star. He recorded 75 total tackles (52 solo), a sack, a forced fumble, and an interception. As a result the Carolina Panthers drafted Beason with the 25th pick in the first round of the 2007 NFL draft.
In his rookie season, Beason was an immediate-impact player. He became the voice of the Panthers defense and the leader when Carolina’s defensive team captain Mike Minter retired. Beason finished the rookie season with 140 tackles.
In 2008 Beason continued his strong play and leadership. He was a driving factor in the team’s success and a big factor in its 12-4 record. Beason made the Pro Bowl in 2008 and looks to continue growing as the team’s premier defensive leader. Carolina Panther fans can take comfort knowing that the middle of the field will be covered as long as No. 52 is on the field.