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2021 Spring Previews: Linebackers

Injuries sponsored by Rogue and Crossfit

2021 European Weightlifting Championships in Moscow
Just a Tuesday in Wisconsin’s weight room
Photo by Sergei Fadeichev\TASS via Getty Images

Yeah, I know the lead pic is technically a power clean, but whatever.

The most explosive full body exercise is here - the hang clean.

Done correctly, it will make you so jacked that walking to the sink will be difficult. You’ll be the adoration of men, women, children, and whatever species Ryan Day is.

Linebackers are consistently jacks of all trades. Not knowing if some 330 pound kid from Ottumwa, Iowa who plays Farming Simulator 2019 un-ironically is going to block down on you, or you have to cover Saquon Barkley in the flat, sucks.

Run fast, do hang cleans, profit. This is a list of linebackers in the B1G based on how much I think they can hang clean.

  1. Olakunle Fatukasi (6’2”, 240) - Rutgers Scarlet Knights

Dude’s Huge.

2. Noah Harvey (6’4”, 245) - Michigan State Spartans

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: DEC 27 Pinstripe Bowl - Michigan State v Wake Forest Photo by Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Listen, a compact frame IS beneficial when cleaning. Less distance to move the weight, a compact explosion, etc. But this kid is big. And there’s literally nothing to do in Lansing except lift weights and walk around Meijer.

A store where the aquarium fish and supplies are right next to the deli meats? Don’t mind if I do!

3. Ellis Brooks - Penn State Nittany Lions

Michigan State v Penn State Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images

He’s got a shin tattoo. That’s gotta count for like an extra 20 lbs of weight lifted. ow.

4. Jack Campbell (6’4”, 218) - Iowa Hawkeyes

Wisconsin v Iowa Photo by Matthew Holst/Getty Images

Grip strength is a big part of full body Olympic lifts. Being a 6’4” guy from Iowa I have no reason to doubt Jack’s handshake would cause me to make an appointment with an orthopedic surgeon.

5. Teradja Mitchell (6’2”, 240) - Ohio State Buckeyes

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: JAN 11 CFP National Championship - Alabama v Ohio State Photo by David Rosenblum/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but Ohio State gets the best players and wins the most games. That bag money (BAG MONEY MEANS PAY FOR PLAY) could also be split to buy some Tier 1 grade juice (JUICE MEANS STEROIDS). And Mitchell has a LOT of Buckeyes.

6. Jack Sanborn (6’2, 225) - Wisconsin Badgers

Kent State v Wisconsin Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images

Sanborn is a linebacking beast on the field. But his two deep - Leo Chenal - dropped a 40 rep 225 bench on Twitter. Can’t get shown up on Twitter, dawg.

7. Kalel Mullings (6’1, 220) - Michigan Wolverines

All-American Bowl Photo by Logan Riely/Getty Images

Kid’s name is Kal’el.

Took a lot of restraint not to put this guy #1. Best name ever.

Hopefully he leaps the Khaki Princess out of a job in a single bound.

8. OC Brothers (6’2”, 210) - Purdue Boilermakers

So, uhh - transfer from Auburn. Almost all of Auburn’s S&C staff was let go last year when Brian Harsin came in.

I’m sure they did a bang up job, but are just pursuing other life and career fulfilling opportunities.


9. Ruben Hyppolite II (6’1, 225) - Maryland Terrapins

Maryland v Penn State Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images

I honestly have no idea. We’re wading into the “maybe these guys lift?” territory now.

10. Marcelino McCrary-Ball (6’, 214) - Indiana Hoosiers

Michigan v Indiana Photo by Justin Casterline/Getty Images

The brother of two NFL players and one other college player. Indiana’s defense is going to be good, but it’s predicated on speed and power.

11. Jake Hansen (6’1, 230) - Illinois Fighting Illini (Belted Kingfishers)

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: OCT 06 Illinois at Rutgers Photo by Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

If the test was hanging ten, instead of hang clean, Jake would be my clear #1 pick.

Coming back for a Super Senior year to pursue this degree? “Enrolled in the recreation, sport, and tourism master’s program” I’m honestly a little jelly. That program sounds AWESOME.

12. Will Honas (6’1, 230) - Nebraska Cornhuskers

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: DEC 18 Nebraska at Rutgers Photo by Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

I have no idea.

I assume every Nebraska player’s diet consists of corn, well-done beef, and a Runza for dessert. Excellent diet for packing on muscle.

13. Mariano Sori-Marin (6’3”, 245) - Minnesota Golden Gophers

Minnesota v Illinois Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images

I am un-uniquely of the opinion that PJ can’t coach. I won’t make fun of RTB, because I know it does actually mean something to him (and his players), but I would take a good guess that he’s big on “alternative” anything. Medicine, fitness, 90’s music.

His athletes are probably hitting 50lb dumbells in a bongo circle and watching Aladdin through the lens of Jafar’s thirst for power during their conditioning time.

Cartoon, not live action.

14. Peter McIntyre - Northwestern Wildcats

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: DEC 19 Big Ten Championship Game Photo by Michael Allio/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

I don’t trust Alex Spanos. I think his act is weird. He also lies about his shirt size... he’s not a large.

It’s a schmedium.