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Competition Opens at Middle Linebacker

Many were wondering if one of the positions that Lane Kiffin would look at to make potential changes would be middle linebacker.

While Devon Kennard is a tremendous athlete, he is still learning the position and his production has been spotty.

So, Lane Kiffin has done just that in deciding to open competition back up...

Chris Galippo, supplanted by Devon Kennard at middle linebacker at the start of the season, worked with the first unit through most of practice and could reclaim the spot.

Galippo, a junior, started the last two games at weakside linebacker in place of the injured Malcolm Smith. But with Smith on track to return against the Sun Devils, Galippo is challenging to earn back the spot where he started every game in 2009.

"The coaches basically said the best guy is going to play," Galippo said.

Kennard moved from defensive end to outside linebacker late last season and began transitioning to the middle during spring practice. Coach Lane Kiffin said the sophomore has had "some ups and downs" and has played through injuries the last two weeks.

Even though 'SC has little to play for they still want to win every game and put the best line-up on the field. If tweaking the roster at various positions gives them a better chance to win and better production on the field then so be it.

Kennard has been hit and miss in his stint as a starter at MLB. Galippo, while being a natural at the position, has been hit and miss as well but more because of being on the shelf because of back injuries.

Hard to know how this will all shake out...