BEVO BEAT

Top opponents for Texas in 2017, No. 5: USC LB Cameron Smith

Posted August 28th, 2017

Advertisement

The countdown to kickoff is on. Over the 100 days before Texas takes on Maryland, we’re counting down the 100 best players the Longhorns will face in 2017. This series is all about impressing your friends at pregame tailgates and watch parties, so grab a notepad and buckle up.

Who is he?

We mentioned that there would be one more USC linebacker on this list. Cameron Smith led the Trojans in tackles last season and returns as the unquestioned leader of the defense. He’s been a star since he stepped on campus, picking up Pac 12 Defensive Freshman of the Year honors in 2015 despite suffering a season-ending knee injury late in the season. Last year, he had 83 tackles and 7.0 tackles for loss from the weak-side linebacker spot.

Advertisement

What should the Longhorns watch for?

Smith is moving to middle linebacker, which should suit his strengths. At 6-foot-2, 250 pounds, he is a solid run-stopper who can also play in space when needed. Keeping him in the middle utilizes his experience and size, and it also allows for speedy John Houston Jr. to roam more freely. At Pac 12 media days, Smith dismissed the notion that he could be next in line for the No. 55 jersey previously worn by the likes of Junior Seau and Willie McGinest. Still, get ready to see plenty of No. 35 on Sept. 16.

Depth an issue

USC coach Clay Helton has called inside linebacker the team’s thinnest position on defense, which makes a healthy Smith even more valuable. He’s suspended for the first half of the season opener because of a targeting penalty he incurred in the Rose Bowl, which will allow the Trojans to try out a few options. Among them is true freshman and Austin product Levi Jones out of Westlake.

Catch up on the series

No. 100: Joel Lanning

No. 99: Tony Nicholson

No. 98: Da’Leon Ward

No. 97: Taylor Martin

No. 96: Kyler Murray

No. 95: Davion Hall

No. 94: Mike Warren

No. 93: Al-Rasheed Benton

No. 92: Carter Stanley

No. 91: Chris Bradley

No. 90: Justin Holmes

No. 89: Alex Barnes

No. 88: Daniel Wise

No. 87: Jesse Aniebonam

No. 86: Cole Walterscheid

No. 85: Shane Cockerille

No. 84: Martell Pettaway

No. 83: David Long

No. 82: Niko Small

No. 81: Cameron Batson

No. 80: Mike Lee

No. 79: Marcelias Sutton

No. 78: Carlos Strickland

No. 77: Anu Solomon

No. 76: Deshaunte Jones

No. 75: Byron Pringle

No. 74: LaQuvionte Gonzalez

No. 73: Zach Sinor

No. 72: Derrick Willies

No. 71: David Montgomery

No. 70: Dylan Cantrell

No. 69: Matt Boermeester

No. 68: Nick Orr

No. 67: Zach Smith

No. 66: Chad Whitener

No. 65: D.J. Moore

No. 64: Jermaine Carter Jr.

No. 63: Ty Summers

No. 62: Jacob Park

No. 61: Daylon Charlot

No. 60: Brendan Moore

No. 59: Brian Peavy

No. 58: Chris Hawkins

No. 57: Ty Johnson

No. 56: Dravon Askew-Henry

No. 55: Michael Pittman Jr.

No. 54: Hakeem Adeniji

No. 53: K.J. Smith

No. 52: JaMycal Hasty

No. 51: Steven Sims Jr.

No. 50: Taylor Young

No. 49: Joseph Noteboom

No. 48: Kenny Hill

No. 47: Jeff Badet

No. 46: Tre Flowers

No. 45: Kennedy McKoy

No. 44: Bobby Evans

No. 43: Austin Seibert

No. 42: Patrick Lawrence

No. 41: Winston Dimel

No. 40: Terence Williams

No. 39: Will Geary

No. 38: Kyzir White

No. 37: Tyron Johnson

No. 36: Nic Shimonek

No. 35: Taj Williams

No. 34: Keke Coutee

No. 33: Reggie Walker

No. 32: Rodney Anderson

No. 31: Jesse Ertz

No. 30: D.J. Reed

No. 29: Andre Chachere

No. 28: Kyle Hicks

No. 27: Marcell Ateman

No. 26: Jake Campos

No. 25: Travin Howard

No. 24: Kamari Cotton-Moya

No. 23: KaVontae Turpin

No. 22: Zach Crabtree

No. 21: Chuma Edoga

No. 20: Will Grier

No. 19: Daniel Imatorbhebhe

No. 18: Jordan Thomas

No. 17: Dorance Armstrong Jr.

No. 16: Justice Hill

No. 15: Porter Gustin

No. 14: Dalton Risner

No. 13: Justin Crawford

No. 12: Deontay Burnett

No. 11: Ronald Jones II

No. 10: Ogbonnia Okoronkwo

No. 9: Mark Andrews

No. 8: Allen Lazard

No. 7: Iman Marshall

No. 8: Orlando Brown

The post Top opponents for Texas in 2017, No. 5: USC LB Cameron Smith appeared first on HookEm.

News on Bevo Beat is free and unlimited. Access to the rest of Hookem.com is included with an Austin American-Statesman subscription in addition to Statesman.com and the ePaper edition. Subscribe today at statesman.com/subscribe.

Comments