One of Nebraska’s top tacklers from the past two seasons is returning for his sixth year of football in 2021 and bolstering an improved run defense.
Inside linebacker Will Honas, who logged 57 tackles and 6.5 tackles for loss in seven games last season, announced that he’s taking advantage of the NCAA-allowed extra year of eligibility due to the pandemic. He continues the wave of Husker defenders who have opted into defensive coordinator Erik Chinander’s vision for 2021, when Nebraska faces one of its toughest schedules in history.
Honas, one of the few junior college recruits who has fully panned out under Scott Frost, only played in 2020 because he suffered a season-ending knee injury four games into the 2018 season. Honas was allowed to redshirt in 2018 — he wouldn’t have been able to had he played one more game — paving the way for him to play in 2019 and 2020. In 2019, he had 73 tackles but also showed signs of rust as he returned from the knee injury.
In 2020, the rust appeared gone. Honas had more tackles for loss in the eight-game 2020 season than he did in the 12-game 2019 season. He had three sacks in 2020, becoming NU’s top blitzing linebacker.
His return solidifies Nebraska’s inside linebacker rotation, which lost Collin Miller after a career-ending spinal concussion. With Honas back, NU has Nick Henrich, Luke Reimer and Northern Iowa transfer Chris Kolarevic for a four-man rotation. Reserves include Garrett Snodgrass, Jackson Hannah and Simon Otte. Nebraska also adds freshmen Mikai Gbayor, Seth Malcom and potentially Randolph Kpai to the mix as well.