One of the hardest hitters in all of college football, and perhaps the most feared defender, USC linebacker Rey Maualuga passed on entering the NFL Draft in 2008 following his junior season despite being projected as a first-round prospect.
He’s a big linebacker at 6-3 and 260 pounds, but he carries his size well. He’s a very smooth athlete with sideline-to-sideline speed and even better short-range quickness. He possesses great instincts, has a nose for the ball, and always seems to be playing downhill. He’s also a very fierce hitter.
Rey Maualuga has been overshadowed somewhat by all the talent surrounding him at USC, but he burst onto the national scene with a dominating performance in the 2008 Rose Bowl against Illinois in which he recorded three sacks, an interception, and a forced fumble.
He had a reputation heading into his senior season for overrunning plays and being out of position, but he has become more disciplined in that area and a better player overall.