What You Need To Know About The Nevada Defense
– Defensive coordinator Jeff Casteel is back after a rough year. The Pack finished 119th in the nation in total defense, having problems in all areas. Leading tackler Austin Paulhus is gone from the linebacking corps, but eight of the top ten tacklers and seven starters return. Now the Pack have to find something it can do right other than come up with tackles for loss.
– The defensive line welcomes back all-star pass rusher Malik Reed – who’ll move to linebacker now – but the front three has to be a bigger, better rock against the run after allowing 208 yards per game. There are veterans in place, but 300-pound Tristan Nicole, and 315-pound Kevin Scott are big, bulky JUCO transfers who can start gumming things up.
– The safeties are in place to hope for more from a pass defense that got roasted for 263 yards per game. Dameon Baber is an all-star hitter who finished second on the team with 94 tackles, and Nephi Sewell had a good first season. If the corners can be better after losing Elijah Moody and Vosean Crumbie, the D will be far, far stronger. No, really …
Biggest Key To The Nevada Defense
The pass defense has to come up with more big things. The Wolf Pack were destroyed through the air, allowing quarterbacks to connect on 67% of their throws and were roasted for 220 yards or more eight times. Outside of the three interceptions against San Jose State, the defense came up with just five spread out over the other 11 games – that can’t happen again.