Published March 21, 2011 - 5:26am
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Saturday Down South is continually counting down the top 20 players in the SEC for 2011 – pre-season style!
Danny Trevathan – No. 8
Danny “Leviathan” Trevathan is the best SEC football player you have never heard of. Not highly recruited out of high school from Leesburg, Florida, Trevathan went to Kentucky to play football in the best conference in America and to prove he belonged.
Standing 6-1, 225lbs, Trevathan will not wow you with his exceptional size, speed or athleticism, but he will wow you with the way he gets a nose on the football. He’s not going to light up your electronic 40-yard dash, but he will give you 12-plus tackles per game.
Sure, Kentucky might be weak up front leading Trevathan to get so many tackles, but the ball carrier rarely does get past him in the second line of defense.
Going back to 2009, Trevathan was Kentucky’s leading tackler with 82 total tackles. However, in 2010, not only did he lead the Wildcats again in tackles, but Trevathan led the SEC with 144 total tackles – 18 more than the next highest tackler. He also was third in the conference in tackles for loss, and he was tied for third in the SEC with four forced fumbles.
Bottom line, Trevathan has a nose for the football. He weaves through traffic on defense as good as anyone I’ve seen in quite a while to get to the ball carrier.
“The energy and aggression he plays with really stands out,” UK linebackers coach Chuck Smith said. “Any coach or any fan who watches the game realizes, ‘Hey, this cat’s a good player.’ He’s smart, explosive and can get a quick jump on the ball. Once he gets locked in, he’s locked in. He’s like one of those smart missiles. He just takes off.”
Trevathan is a quiet leader, as evidenced by what Head Coach Joker Phillips said about him. He’s not “get in your face and yell at you”, but rather, he leads by example.
“Danny leads by the way he plays. He’s got a lot of respect here with the way he plays and the fact that he’s been around here a long time. When he speaks, those guys have got to listen with the way he performs and shows up. I’d like to see that out of Danny.”
Another solid defensive year of leading Kentucky and the SEC in tackles will undoubtedly help Trevathan as scouts began to project the 2012 NFL Draft. Trevathan certainly is fun to watch on Saturdays, and I’m looking forward to 22 roaming the second line of defense.