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Better/Worse/Neutral: Linebacker

The Huskies somehow lost just one starter from 2013 but return talent in their defense's mid-level that can stand toe to toe with any in team in the country.

Thearon W. Henderson

Returning: Keishawn Bierria, Sean Constantine, Travis Feeney, Hau'oli Kikaha, Scott Lawyer, Cory Littleton, Connor O'Brien, Shaq Thompson, John Timu, Azeem Victor, Psalm Wooching

Losses: Princeton Fuimaono, Jamaal Kearse, Thomas Tutogi

Additions: Drew Lewis

The Husky linebacking corps returns three starters from a year ago in Timu, Thompson and Littleton. You also have the rebranding of Kikaha with Travis Feeney coming back as a de facto starter for the past two seasons. This group is as talented and proven as any there is in the conference, and also the country.

The depth of the position took a bit of a hit with the loss of starter Fuimaono and steady backups Kearse and Tutogi. The proven backups have almost completely filtered out, but the young talent coming in behind them are more than promising. Azeem Victor has gotten excellent reviews since the spring and has perhaps the best tools of any middle linebacker UW has had in over a decade -- it's just a matter of getting a chance to put them to use and then doing so.

One of the things that stands out with this position is that for all the talent it has there are just two seniors -- and you could make the argument of there being just one depending on what we see from Kikaha this year. Having the same Timu/Thompson/Feeney mainstays over the past few seasons has allowed the younger pieces to come in and develop with redshirt seasons, and Drew Lewis will get the same opportunity this season. As we've seen with other positions, the playing of youth that was necessary post-Willingham has caught up and the depth chart has righted itself.

Verdict: Better. This position has a legitimate two deep that could swap in and out at will and not miss much from any given player to the next. There's a diverse array of talents such that they team should be ready for the different styles of offenses they'll encounter in the rugged Pac-12 North.