World-Herald staff writer Rich Kaipust breaks down the Husker offense position-by-position.
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Big Ten rank: 9
Latest word: Nebraska watched the ranks get thinned out after last season and now must find all kinds of answers. The veterans are Jason Ankrah at end and Thad Randle at tackle, but Randle has been plagued by injuries throughout his career and has only six career starts. Big chances are coming for Aaron Curry among others at the interior positions and for underclassmen such as Randy Gregory, Avery Moss and Greg McMullen on the outside. Potential doesn't seem to be the problem after the cupboards got restocked, but that's all it is until the season starts.
Who can help: Vincent Valentine is intriguing at tackle because of his size and tools, but he's a redshirt freshman who hasn't played a college snap. Among the true freshmen, the Huskers are high on Maliek Collins at tackle and A.J. Natter at end.
Maliek Collins, No. 7, Fr., 6-2, 300: Kansas City native was football all-state pick and state champion wrestler.
Jason Ankrah, Sr., 6-4, 265: Veteran has started 18 games and played in 36 as a Husker end.
Dimarya Mixon, No. 42, Fr., 6-4, 250: One of the top 50 players coming out of Texas, according to Rivals.com.
Randy Gregory, No. 44, So., 6-6, 255: JC transfer sat out the 2012 season at Arizona Western with a broken leg.
A.J. Natter, No. 45, Fr., 6-5, 240: Nebraska's first scholarship recruit out of Wisconsin since 1997.
Tobi Okuyemi, No. 48, Jr., 6-2, 280: Played in pair of 2012 nonconference games for first action as a Husker.
Garret Johns, No. 50, Fr., 6-0, 280: Settling in with defensive line after moving from offense in spring practice.
Thad Randle, No. 53, Sr., 6-1, 290: One of only two scholarship seniors on the Huskers' defensive line.
Kevin Maurice, No. 55, Fr., 6-3, 280: Senior year in Orlando included Florida Class 8A all-state honors.
Steve Graeber, No. 58, Fr., 6-1, 250: Dad, Ken, was lineman for 1983 Scoring Explosion offense at Nebraska.
Brodrick Nickens, No. 69, Sr., 6-5, 305: Former NU offensive lineman finishing his career on the defensive front.
Jordan Ackerman, No. 80, Fr., 6-3, 240: Played on Class A state championship team as junior at Lincoln Southeast.
Ross Dzuris, No. 88, Fr., 6-3, 245: Redshirt freshman was late add to 105-player roster in fall camp.
Greg McMullen, No. 90, Fr., 6-3, 285: Totaled 21 sacks in final two high school seasons in Akron, Ohio.
Donovan Vestal, No. 91, Jr., 6-5, 275: Texan twice has been selected to Brook Berringer Citizenship Team.
Kevin Williams, No. 92, So., 6-2, 280: Out for the season with his second major knee injury in three years.
Avery Moss, No. 94, Fr., 6-2, 265: Played in three games last fall before shoulder injury led to a medical redshirt.
Jack Gangwish, No. 95, So., 6-2, 260: Former linebacker moved to defensive end during spring practice.
Aaron Curry, No. 96, So., 6-1, 280: Played in first four games as true freshman before injuries slowed progress.
Vincent Valentine, No. 98, Fr., 6-3, 325: NU considered playing defensive tackle before ultimately redshirting him in '12.
Jay Guy, No. 99, Jr., 6-1, 290: Saw most action as a redshirt freshman, playing in three games in 2011.
Big Ten rank: 7
Latest word: The consensus seems to be that Nebraska is set to get faster and more athletic here, but only David Santos has much experience among the projected regulars — and he's a sophomore. Santos also is assuming the responsibilities that Will Compton held as the starting middle linebacker. Zaire Anderson (weakside) played only a small chunk of plays last season before blowing out a knee. Jared Afalava (strongside) is a redshirt freshman. The Huskers already were looking at retooling this unit before Thomas Brown was dismissed from the team in June and Trevor Roach was lost to an injury.
Who can help: Michael Rose has developed some versatility and might be ready to plug a gap, if necessary. It's not out of the question for the Huskers to look at some true freshmen like Courtney Love and Josh Banderas, and they even experimented some with safety Nathan Gerry in camp.
Marcus Newby, No. 3, Fr., 6-1, 210: Late start to fall camp makes Newby most likely of freshman linebackers to redshirt.
Zaire Anderson, No. 13, Jr., 5-11, 220: Philadelphia native had last season cut short by a September knee injury.
Michael Rose, No. 15, RFr., 5-11, 230: Redshirt freshman has worked at middle and weakside positions.
Austin Williams, No. 24, Jr., 6-0, 205: Appeared in 13 of 14 games last season as a special teams player.
Jared Afalava, No. 33, RFr., 6-3, 230: Redshirt freshman picked Nebraska over offers from a half-dozen Pac-12 schools.
David Santos, No. 41, So., 6-0, 225: Highlight of redshirt freshman year was his first start, 10 tackles against Michigan.
Trevor Roach, No. 43, Jr., 6-2, 230: Huskers lost the veteran for the season after a summer injury.
Chris Weber, No. 49, Fr., 6-3, 200: Walk-on continues parade of Elkhorn High players into Nebraska's program.
Courtney Love, No. 51, Fr., 6-1, 230: January enrollment allowed freshman to go through spring practice.
Josh Banderas, No. 52, Fr,. 6-2, 225: Huskers' only in-state recruit for 2012 was Lincoln Southwest's two-way star.
Brad Simpson, No. 56, Fr., 6-0, 215: Ralston High graduate was defensive MVP of the 2012 Shrine Bowl.
Jack Fordon, No. 57, Fr., 6-2, 220: Four-year starter out of Providence Catholic in Frankfort, Ill.
Colby Starkebaum, No. 59, Sr., 6-1, 210: Led the White squad in spring game with 10 tackles, including two sacks.
Big Ten rank: 4
Latest word: The strongest position on the Husker defense is at cornerback, where Ciante Evans, Stanley Jean-Baptiste and Josh Mitchell head such a solid and deep bunch that NU moved Andrew Green to safety. Evans also reprises his role as the nickel back when Nebraska takes a linebacker off the field, something it does with regularity. There will be a need for better safety play than a year ago, with Corey Cooper and Harvey Jackson likely getting the first shots at replacing Daimion Stafford and P.J. Smith. If either doesn't develop or progress, Charles Jackson and Green will be waiting.
Who can help: Mohammed Seisay and Daniel Davie ran with the No. 2s at cornerback through camp. Green will be an important piece because of his ability to do both. NU also is high on freshmen D.J. Singleton, Nathan Gerry, Boaz Joseph and Drake Martinez, with Singleton a possibility in dime packages.
Harvey Jackson, No. 1, Jr., 6-2, 210: Safety secured comeback win over Wisconsin in '12 with a late fumble recovery.
Mohammed Seisay, No. 4, Sr., 6-2, 200: Former JC transfer is one of six seniors in the Husker secondary.
Josh Mitchell, No. 5, Jr., 5-11, 160: Academic All-Big Ten pick started eight games last season.
Corey Cooper, No. 6, Jr., 6-1, 215: Chasing starting safety job but previously has played corner, nickel and dime.
D.J. Singleton, No. 8, Fr., 6-1, 200: Played at same New Jersey high school as former NU quarterback Joe Dailey.
Andrew Green, No. 11, Sr., 6-0, 195: Giving safety a shot after starting 22 games at CB the past two seasons.
Boaz Joseph, No. 12, Fr., 6-1, 190: One of three signees from Florida in the Huskers' last recruiting class.
Jonathan Rose, No. 14, So., 6-1, 190: Former Auburn transfer now eligible after required redshirt season.
Stanley Jean-Baptiste, No. 16, Sr., 6-3, 220: Finished junior year with two interceptions and nine pass breakups.
Ciante Evans, No. 17, Sr., 5-11, 190: Captain is Huskers' top returning tackler after logging 56 last season.
LeRoy Alexander, No. 18, Fr., 6-0, 190: Played on high school teams that went combined 22-4 his last two years.
Wil Richards, No. 19, Sr., 5-11, 190: Special teams regular is two-time Academic All-Big Ten selection.
Charles Jackson, No. 21, So., 5-11, 175: One of five Huskers to play last season as true freshman.
Anthony Ridder, No. 22, So., 6-2, 200: Scout-team quarterback in 2011 switched to defense last year.
Daniel Davie, No. 23, So., 6-1, 185: Talented athlete trying to find time behind some veterans at cornerback.
Nathan Gerry, No. 25, Fr., 6-2, 210: First NU recruit from South Dakota in 10 years could play as a freshman.
Zach Stovall, No. 26, Fr., 5-11, 185: Walk-on from Bellevue East was an All-Metro player last season.
Seth Jameson, No. 29, Sr., 6-1, 205: Mathematics major on track to graduate in December.
Derek Foster, No. 30, Jr., 5-11, 190: The walk-on from Elm Creek intercepted 17 passes in his high school career.
Joey Felici, No. 31, Jr., 5-9, 175: Millard South product made his Husker debut last year in Idaho State game.
Drake Martinez, No. 36, Fr., 6-2, 200: Brother of Husker quarterback Taylor Martinez also is a speedster.
Big Ten rank: 11
Latest word: Nebraska has had a nice run of high-level kickers and punters, but is left to find its next ones after losing two-year regular Brett Maher. Mauro Bondi and transfer Pat Smith go after the place-kicking and kickoff duties, while Sam Foltz is set to take over punting duties. It's also time to break in a new long-snapper after four years of P.J. Mangieri. As if all of that uncertainty isn't enough, the Huskers need to find something better than they've been getting on the return units.
Who can help: Look for Jamal Turner to see some increased work on return units after NU muffed a number of punts last season and averaged just 21.6 yards on kickoffs. NU takes its long-snapping serious enough that it signed Gabriel Miller as a scholarship recruit.
Sam Foltz, No. 27, Fr., 6-1, 200: Punter from Grand Island also is listed as a receiver on Nebraska's roster.
Mauro Bondi, No. 37, So., 6-0, 205: Florida native was lightly used in 2011 before redshirting last season.
Grant Schumacher, No. 47, Fr., 5-9, 155: Out of a Lincoln Pius X program that produced St. Louis Rams kicker Greg Zuerlein.
Gabriel Miller, No. 91, Fr., 6-0, 235: Forte is long-snapping but also was a two-year starter at center in high school.
Pat Smith, No. 94, Sr., 5-11, 185: Transfer made all 10 of his field goals in his final season at Western Illinois.
Spencer Lindsay, No. 95, Fr., 5-10, 195: Combined 17 of 22 on field goals in his final two Kearney High seasons.
Joseph Rotherham, No. 97, So., 6-0, 220: Backed up Nebraska starting long-snapper P.J. Mangieri last season.
Jordan Bellar, No. 98, Fr., 6-0, 165: Played quarterback, kicker, punter and defense for Norfolk Catholic's Class C-1 title teams.