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Stampeding Through the Roster: #55 Michael Lanaris

Brian Kelly: not a fan of Michael Lanaris.
Brian Kelly: not a fan of Michael Lanaris.

Linebacker is the strongest position for the Bulls this season, and the leader of the pack is fifth-year senior Michael Lanaris

#55 LB Michael Lanaris
Redshirt Senior, 6'0" 234 lbs.

Stats in 2011: Played all 12 games, starting 11. Made one interception, and I think we all remember it without looking. Lanaris' diving catch of a deflected pass deep in USF territory not only stunted a Notre Dame drive, it was the impetus for Brian Kelly's awesome volcano face moment. Lanaris was second on the team in tackles, with 87 (45 solo, 42 assisted). He had one sack, four tackles for loss, and recovered two fumbles.

Current Spot on Depth Chart: Starting middle linebacker.

How did he come to USF: Mike played high school football at Lake Mary High School and was the school's Athlete of the Year in 2007. He also played catcher for the baseball team and was named MVP by his teammates, when he hit .465 in 2008.

Recruiting Rankings: Rivals listed Lanaris as a two-star prospect, Scout also gave him two stars and ranked him #65 among outside linebackers.

Projected Playing Time for 2012: Lanaris is a lock at the starting middle linebacker spot, and as a fifth year senior, he's the most experienced member of the team's most experienced unit. Along with redshirt junior DeDe Lattimore and senior Sam Barrington, linebacker will be the core of the defense in 2012