LaVonte David: Nebraska Cornhuskers Linebacker Could Be an NFL Draft Sleeper

Adam McLaughlinContributor IIDecember 25, 2011

David transfered to Nebraska late in 2010 and made an impact straight out of the gate, setting a school record with 152 tackles.
David transfered to Nebraska late in 2010 and made an impact straight out of the gate, setting a school record with 152 tackles.Eric Francis/Getty Images

Every mock draft that I see for the upcoming 2012 NFL Draft is sleeping on LaVonte David.

Ask any Husker fan about him, and there’s no limit as to what this star can do.

For the last two years, he’s been the warrior in Lincoln. And quite a replacement to Ndamukong Suh, whom we thought we could never replace.

So why is it David is not in any mock draft? I understand not seeing his name in the first round. But can we get a second-round sighting?

Many will say he’s undersized for his position. Almost every scout. At 6’1” and 220, he’s a small linebacker.

But isn’t the NFL going elsewhere at the position? Isn’t it more of a skilled position asking for hybrid abilities?

Because David can do all of that. He can cut you up in the backfield and guard you in coverage.

He’s a poor man's Von Miller. And there’s never been any concern of his size for us fans or needing to add bulk.

He only led a Husker defense in 2010 with 152 tackles, setting a school record.

Think about that for a second.

More than Suh. More than Grant Wistrom. More than Kyle Vanden Bosch, Bo and Barrett Ruud. All prime names.

The most in Nebraska history. A defensive-focused school.

To us in Nebraska, David came out of nowhere. A late transfer in 2010, David arrived in Lincoln out of Fort Scott, Kan. You’d think he saw absolutely no competition there until you read between the lines and see he tackled future Heisman winner Cam Newton 18 times in a junior college game.

That doesn’t scream needing size to me. Isn’t Newton as big and as hard to bring down as they come?

See, Nebraska knows defense. Head coach Bo Pelini has put many of his defensive specialists in the pro level within recent years. Suh, Larry Asante, Prince Amukamara, DeJon Gomes and Eric Hagg are just to name a few since he took this regime.

All of those guys have had an immediate impact for their teams.

David though might be one of his best recruits.

For a second straight year in 2011, David led the team in tackling. He’s good for 10 a game, just like Kobe Bryant is good for 25 a game in the NBA.

David is special. Whomever drafts him will be happy. He will be a dynamic player.

Forget the need for size. He’s game smart. That’s all that matters.

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