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July 9, 2013

Top Husker players for 2013: No. 6-10

Voting Criteria: Player's importance to the team in 2013, talent and potential for the upcoming season. A player's long term/NFL potential was not taken into consideration.

Voting Panel: HuskerOnline.com publisher Sean Callahan, HuskerOnline.com senior writer Robin Washut and HuskerOnline.com staff writer Dan Hoppen.

No. 10 OT Jeremiah Sirles Analysis
Bear Creek HS
Lakewood, Colorado

Height: 6-6
Weight: 310
Year: Senior

Depth Chart Projection: starting right tackle

2012 Stats: Started all 14 games.

Recent Update:
Spring grade out: Offensive line

There are a lot of questions about how the tackle rotation will shape out heading into fall camp. Is JUCO transfer Matt Finnin ready to start right away? Can incumbent left tackle Brent Qvale hold him off? Will Andrew Rodriguez live up to his enormous potential? For all the moving parts at the position, Sirles is the one constant. The senior proved more than capable of manning both tackle spots last year and started every game. With playing time very much in flux, his flexibility will allow the coaching staff to play the best players without worry of position. Sirles is tall and athletic and though he's had some problems with penalties and speed rushers in the past, he is NU's most consistent lineman outside of Spencer Long.
Voting Rundown: Sean Callahan - No. 9 / Dan Hoppen - No. 10 / Robin Washut- No. 10

No. 9 LB Zaire Anderson Analysis
Riverside CC, Frankford HS
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Height: 5-11
Weight: 220
Year: Junior

Depth Chart Projection: Starting outside linebacker

2012 Stats: Played in three games, totaling four tackles.

Recent Update:
Spring grade out: Linebacker

With his light frame and a game built on speed, Anderson arrived on campus saddled with comparisons to Lavonte David that were never fair. He played little in the first two games of the season before drawing a start against Arkansas State. Anderson started to show off his athleticism but had his season cut short when he discovered his ACL was torn after the game. If he is able to fully recover from the injury (and all reports are that he has), Anderson's continued development will be critical to a young linebacking corps searching for a veteran leader and playmaker. The David comparisons are over the top, but Anderson is certainly capable of making a big impact.
Voting Rundown: Sean Callahan - No. 10 / Dan Hoppen - 7 / Robin Washut - No. 11

No. 8 DE Jason Ankrah Analysis
Quince Orchard HS
Gaithersburg, Maryland

Height: 6-4
Weight: 265
Year: Senior

Depth Chart Projection: Starting defensive end

2012 Stats: Played in 14 games, starting nine. Had 26 tackles, including six for loss, while forcing two fumbles and picking up a pair of sacks.

Recent Update:
Spring grade out: Defensive end

Ankrah never developed into the pass rusher NU fans hoped he would be - he has just 3.0 career sacks in 34 games. But ends are asked to do more than just put pressure on the quarterback. Ankrah plays the run very well and helps to set the edge against mobile quarterbacks. And on a young defense like this one, his leadership and knowledge of the system should prove to be extremely valuable qualities. If he could somehow find a way to get to the quarterback more often, Ankrah could potentially be a couple of spots higher on this list. With Eric Martin gone, Nebraska needs to find someone to consistently rush the passer.
Voting Rundown: Sean Callahan - 6 / Dan Hoppen - No. 13 / Robin Washut - No. 9

No. 7 WR Jamal Turner Analysis
Sam Houston HS
Arlington, Texas

Height: 6-1
Weight: 185
Year: Junior

Depth Chart Projection: Starting Y receiver

2012 Stats: Hauled in 32 receptions for 417 yards and three touchdowns. Returned seven kickoffs for 155 yards (22.1 average) and six punts for 34 yards (5.4).

Recent Update:
Spring grade out: Wide receiver

The first season and a half of Turner's career were more defined by potential than production. But last year's Michigan State game, in which he caught the game-winning touchdown with less than 10 seconds left, marked a turning point for the slot receiver. In NU's first eight games last year, Turner has 24 targets and 14 receptions. In the final six games, he had 18 catches on 30 targets. Taylor Martinez started looking for him more and Turner delivered. He should only improve as he spends more time at wide receiver and his athleticism and open-field moves put him in the conversations for both the kick and punt return jobs.
Voting Rundown: Sean Callahan - No. 8 / Dan Hoppen - No. 8 / Robin Washut - No. 7

No. 6 WR Quincy Enunwa Analysis
Rancho Verde HS
Moreno Valley, California

Height: 6-2
Weight: 225
Year: Senior

Depth Chart Projection: Starting Z receiver

2012 Stats: Brought in 42 receptions for 470 yards and one score.

Recent Update:
Spring grade out: Wide receiver

Enunwa doesn't have Kenny Bell's straight-line speed or Turner's quickness and agility, but he developed into a very secure target in his junior campaign. Enunwa is a devastating blocker on the outside and helped spring Martinez and Ameer Abdullah on some long scampers. But he also became an asset in the passing game, displaying sound hands and an aversion to going down on first contact. Enunwa is too physical to be jammed at the line of scrimmage or pushed around, making him an ideal possession receiver. He led the team with six drops in 2012, so that needs to get cleaned up. But Enunwa is a well-rounded receiver who provides a solid target for Martinez.
Voting Rundown: Sean Callahan - No. 7 / Dan Hoppen - No. 6 / Robin Washut - No. 6

If you missed:

No. 11-15

No. 16-20

No. 21-25

No. 26-30

No. 31-35

No. 36-40

NEXT UP: Ranking No. 6-10

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