VIDEO: Aaron Hutsell Interview
JEFFERSON CITY, Tenn. – This is the first in an eight-part series breaking down each of Carson-Newman football's positions. Aaron Hutsell breaks down the linebackers for 2017.
Carson-Newman football does lose All-SAC performer Lane Bloom from the position group, however, four other players return with starting experience.
"All of them have some experience," Hutsell said. "They're all eager to learn. They're all eager to grow and they seem to be having a great time."
Sha'Heem Stupart (Taylors, S.C.) leads the group and could finish among the top 10 career tacklers in Carson-Newman football history.
"Sha'Heem's a great example of a guy who gets after it day-in-day-out in the weight room and on the field," Hutsell said. "His preparation is incredible and it's easy to see why he's a senior leader."
He sits at 215 tackles for his career. Stupart started every game in which he appeared for the Eagles in his junior year. He made nine starts and was second on the team in tackles with 75. He also made five tackles for loss and had 2.5 sacks.
Stupart registered double digit tackles on three occassions, topping out at 14 against Humboldt State (9/1). He also made 13 tackles against Wingate (10/22) and had 11 against Lenoir-Rhyne (10/1). He was Carson-Newman's leading tackler in five games and produ
Nard enjoyed a stellar freshman season that saw the linebacker register 49 tackles, tied for the fifth most on the team. Nard also made 3.5 tackles for loss and had two forced fumbles. Nard had a season-best 10 tackles in the Eagles' win over Saint Augustine's (9/10).
Coats finished his freshman season sixth on the team with 60 tackles to go along with three stops behind the line, an interception and a pass break up. Coats played in all 12 games for the Eagles while starting five. He had his pick against Mars Hill (9/26) in a win over the Lions. He turned in a career high nine tackles in the win over the Lions before topping that with 10 tackles against Brevard (10/10).
Meanwhile, Green appeared in 10 games with three starts for the Eagles as a linebacker. Green ranked fifth on the team in tackles with 49 stops. He made 4.5 tackles behind the line of scrimmage and had a sack. Green had three games with double-digit tackles. He tallied 10 against Humboldt State (9/1) and Catawba (9/17). He had a career high 14 stops against Tusculum (11/12). He had a career-high 2.5 stops behind the line of scrimmage against the Pioneers.
Carson-Newman football's position previews continue Tuesday with the defensive line.