Auburn Football: Outback Bowl Practices Will Offer Sneak Peek of 2015 Stars

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Oct 4, 2014; Auburn, AL, USA; LSU Tigers running back Kenny Hilliard (27) is tackled by Auburn Tigers linebacker Anthony Swain (43) during the second half at Jordan Hare Stadium. Auburn beat LSU 41-7. Mandatory Credit: John Reed-USA TODAY Sports

On defense, it’s going to be more difficult to envision the 2015 unit because we don’t know who the new defensive coordinator will be following Ellis Johnson’s firing.

However, we should see the continued improvement of defensive linemen that have played often this year, including Elijah Daniel and Gimel President, as well as 2013 newcomers that didn’t see much of the field, such as Devaroe Lawrence, Raashed Kennion, Justin Thornton and Dontavius Russell.

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Daniel and President have both played 12 games this season at defensive end, and President emerged as a bit of a surprise as an eight-game starter. The pair will compete to start opposite Carl Lawson next season, who should be fully recovered from a torn ACL.

Regardless of the change in coordinator, and a potential schematic change that will come with it, the linebackers should all be back in 2015 (unless someone like Casanova McKinzy unexpectedly jumps to the NFL).

McKenzy is the team’s second leading tackler with Kris Frost right behind him. The pair will be one of the best and most experienced combinations in the SEC in 2015, and Anthony Swain has provided quality depth. That said, Tre Williams, Justin Garrett and Kenny Flowers will also benefit from increased reps and could even make a case to find starting spots at other positions.

Next: Defensive Backs