Were back for a double-dose of our Top 25 Players in the Big Ten! We last left you with No. 6 and that was Nebraska’s Taylor Martinez and today we switch back to the defensive side of the ball with one of the best linebackers in the B1G.
Our No. 5 player is a three-year letterwinner and enters his third season as Michigan State’s starting middle linebacker. He has been the “brain” of the Spartans back-to-back Top 10 defense and was named a captain in 2012. In other words, it would be hard to argue that any single defensive player in the B1G is or has been more important to their respective team than this guy has been for Michigan State.
Max Bullough will continue to be a key for the Spartan defense in 2013, and surely be one of the best, if not the best linebacker in the B1G.
No. 5: Max Bullough (Linebacker, Michigan State):
2012 Stats/Honors: 13 Games played, 51 Solo tackles, 60 Assisted tackles, 12.5 Tackles for loss, 2.5 sacks, 1 interception, 1 forced fumble, and 4 defensive break ups. First-team All-Big Ten selection by the coaches and second-team pick by the media. Honorable mention All-American by Pro Football Wekly and one of 12 semifinalists for the Butkus Award.
What makes him worthy: Bullough comes from a long line of Spartan linebackers, his father, Shane, and uncle, Chuck both played the position for Michigan State. Like his father, Shane, who was a captain in 1986, Max is a true leader. He calls audibles on the field, stuffs the run and makes tackles on the outside. Max has used his athletic ability and intelligence to lead Michigan State in tackles for the last two years while racking up 200 total tackles.
He started all 13 games in 2012 at middle linebacker while leading the Spartans with 111 stops, which ranked ninth in the Big Ten. Max also ranked second on the team and tied for ninth in the B1G with 12.5 tackles for loss. He ranked fourth in the league in tackles for Big Ten games and has produced at least a half tackle for loss in each of the last eight games.
Bullough has been a consistent presence for the Spartans top 10 defense; starting the last 27 games. Max is listed at 6’3” and weighing 242 lbs. and uses that frame to wrap up the ball carrier.
Not many players in the B1G are more decorated than Max Bullough. He was named to ESPN’s Big Ten All-Freshman team, and was second-team All-Big Ten by coaches; honorable mention selection by the media in his sophomore year. Max has also been an Academic All-Big Ten selection for the last two years. Opposing coaches have been planning against this guy for years, but Bullough has found a way to stay one step ahead of the competition. I expect Max to use his intelligence and ability to continue his success in the B1G, and maybe lead the league in tackles for 2013.
Video Proof: A highlight video is coming soon and is currently being put together…
The Top 25 List: