Big 12 Football: Power Ranking Best Defensive Players Pre-2014 Spring Practice

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Big 12 Football: Power Ranking Best Defensive Players Pre-2014 Spring Practice
Matt York/Associated Press

To say what the controversial defensive substitution rule can't on its own: How about some love for the defense?

Though the Big 12 has been known for potent offenses, it was defense that had a big year in 2013. Cornerbacks like Oklahoma State's Justin Gilbert and TCU's Jason Verrett made life difficult for opposing receivers.

Or how about Texas defensive end Jackson Jeffcoat, the Big 12 Co-Defensive Player of the Year? He was constantly in the backfield creating pressure. 

While guys like Gilbert and Jeffcoat will be missed, there are still a ton of solid defenders coming back to the Big 12 in 2014. Can the conference shake its offense-first reputation and become better known for its defenses?

With so many quarterbacks coming back, there's a chance. 

Who are the best Big 12 defensive players heading into spring practice? (You can also check out B/R's Big 12 quarterback and running back pre-spring power rankings.)

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