Wisconsin will now have Leon Jacobs play both ways.
With starting inside linebacker Chris Orr lost for the season after suffering a torn ACL against LSU on the sophomore's first defensive snap and projected starter TJ Edwards still recovering from a left foot injury that kept him sidelined for Saturday's win, the Badgers are now thin at linebacker. Head coach Paul Chryst seems to have found a solution, confirming on Tuesday's Big Ten teleconference that Jacobs will now play linebacker as well as fullback. Jacobs started three games at inside linebacker in 2015 before moving to fullback this spring.
Chryst indicated that Jacobs will receive practice reps at both positions, providing the Badgers plenty of flexibility. It should be a smooth transition for the athletic California native, who had significant playing time at linebacker in 2014 and '15. Jacobs finished 2014 with 28 total tackles, two for loss and 1.5 sacks, and recorded 10 tackles, two for loss and 0.5 sacks in 2015 before suffering a season-ending toe injury. Jack Cichy and Ryan Connelly are still expected to see a majority of the snaps at ILB while Edwards recovers—he's listed as questionable for Saturday's game against Akron—but Jacobs gives Chryst another experienced linebacker to use when needed.
Here's Wisconsin's Week 2 depth chart—it was released before news of Jacobs' position change was announced.
Quick shot of depth chart: Connelly at No. 1 ILB for Orr, Rosowski No. 1 punter pic.twitter.com/f0zip89sTL— Bucky's 5th Quarter (@B5Q) September 5, 2016