Originally written on The B1g Time  |  Last updated 5/14/13
Michigan-state-penn-state

 

                                  

Were back for another dose of our Top 25 Players in the Big Ten! We last left you with No. 22 and that was Ohio State’s Carlos Hyde and today we switch back to the defensive side of the ball with one of the most athletic linebackers in the B1G.

A fellow linebacker at times overshadows him on his team, but this man has made a name for himself over the last few years in the Big Ten.

Before we get into it, let us remind you of what criteria we used to make our Top 25 list. We used things like importance to your team, overall skill at your position, records set, past performance, conference honors (coaches, media, our list too), and the good old-fashioned eye test.

With that, let’s look at one of the best linebackers in the B1G…

No. 21: Denicos Allen (Linebacker, Michigan State):

2012 Stats/Honors: 13 Games played, 41 Solo tackles, 38 Assisted tackles, 10 Tackles for loss, 3 sacks, 1 interception, 1 forced fumble, 1 recovered fumble and 3 defensive break ups.  Honorable mention All-B1G for Coaches and Media.

What makes him worthy: Allen’s speed and athleticism at the linebacker position make him a scary matchup for opposing coaches. Denicos has used that speed to rack up 14 total sacks and 28.5 tackles for loss in his last two seasons.

He started every game in 2012 at Sam linebacker while ranking third on the team in tackles (79)  and 16th in the Big Ten with 10 tackles for loss as well as ranking tied for 11th in B1G conference games with 7.5 tackles for loss.

Though Allen had a great year, it was not the year that everyone expected as he was named the Big Ten preseason Defensive MVP by Sports Illustrated and was featured on preseason watch lists for the Bednarik Award, the Butkus Award and the Lombardi Award. Denicos slumped a bit in his second year as a full-time starter, but  Allen’s speed should allow for him to get back to the double-digit sack number that he had in 2011.

Allen is listed at 5’11” and weighing 215 lbs. and with former linebacker Chris Norman graduating, Denicos is more important than ever for the Spartans. I would look for him to have an impact similar to his sophomore season, and B1G quarterbacks should be on the lookout for number 28 in green and white.

Video Proof: Allen uses his athletic ability to go “waterboy” on Joe Bauserman…

 

The Top 25 List:

No. 25: Christian Bryant (Safety, Ohio State)


No. 24: Ryan Groy (OL, Wisconsin)


No. 23: Isaiah Lewis (Safety, Michigan State)


No. 22: Carlos Hyde (Running Back, Ohio State)

For more on Big Ten football, basketball, hockey & all things B1G follow us on Twitter @TheB1GTime and Like us on Facebook. Spartan fans also follow our MSU feed on Twitter @TheB1GTimeMSU

 

GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Adam Eaton gets 4th of July surprise from brother

Clippers in talks with JaVale McGee, Amar’e Stoudemire

Report: LeBron won't negotiate with Cavs until Thompson is signed

Andrei Kostitsyn interested in return to NHL

Blazers fire assistant who said Aldridge was leaving team

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Miguel Cabrera lands on DL for first time in his career

LaMarcus Aldridge chooses to sign with Spurs

WATCH: Serena Williams wags finger at Wimbledon crowd, says, 'Don’t try me'

Report: Rajon Rondo headed to Sacramento Kings

Dez Bryant deal with Cowboys could be announced Monday

Brandon Saad, Ryan O’Reilly sign long-term contracts with Columbus, Buffalo

Kosta Koufos agrees to deal with Kings

Report: Blues in trade talks about Kevin Shattenirk

Report: Gregg Popovich plans to fulfill five-year contract

4-Star LB commits to Kentucky, zings Louisville

Clay Buchholz not worried about trade rumors

All hope isn't completely lost for this year's Milwaukee Brewers

Roy Hibbert likely being traded to Lakers

WATCH: Pablo Sandoval falls over railing during catch

Report: Packers TE charged with firing a gun in Miami

Kawhi, LaMarcus, the mid-range and the Spurs' next epoch

How can Rafael Nadal regain his dominance?

NBA Rumors: Cavs and Spurs vying for David West

College Football News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
THE B1G TIME

Russell Wilson 'would definitely consider' playing for Mariners

Solo, Rapinoe among USWNT stars up for World Cup awards

LBS on Sports Jeopardy! Here's how how it went

College football's 35 most patriotic helmets

A brief history of non-star All-Stars

With Love retained, the Cavs can take care of LeBron

Grading the deal: Davis commits to Pelicans

Obama Administration: Change name if Redskins move to D.C.

Deciding what the All-Star Game means

Odell Beckham Jr. offered professional baseball contract

Orioles keep finding a way to win

Lloyd sends USWNT to World Cup final

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.