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Wisconsin football: Leon Jacobs moving to running back

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Two Badgers coaches announced that Leon Jacobs will be switching from inside linebacker to running back for spring practices.

Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

When spring practice rolls around for the Wisconsin Badgers, Leon Jacobs will try out his hand on the other side of the ball.

Jacobs will make the move from inside linebacker to running back, Wisconsin offensive coordinator Joe Rudolph and running backs coach John Settle confirmed on Tuesday.

"We're looking to get back to the physicality on offense that defined Wisconsin in the past," Settle said.

At 6'2", 233 lbs., Jacobs would provide just that.

As a linebacker, Jacobs compiled 45 tackles over the past three seasons, but missed most of 2015 with a toe injury. A junior last season, the Badgers were hopeful Jacobs would be given a medical redshirt by the NCAA.

Settle and Rudolph both noted Wisconsin's depth at inside linebacker played a large role in the position switch. Chris Orr and TJ Edwards impressed last season in their freshmen campaigns, and Jack Cichy became one of the defense's top playmakers.

The Badgers also have inside linebacker Dallas Jeanty, an early enrollee from the 2016 class, on campus for spring practice.

Perhaps Jacobs will assume the role formerly occupied by by sophomore Alec Ingold of short-yardage back. Settle said that Ingold will compete with redshirt senior Austin Ramesh for a fullback competition he expects to be "fierce."