Pac-12 top 25 for 2013: No. 16


Our countdown of the Pac-12's top 25 preseason players in 2013 continues.

A lot of good players, as it happens every year, won't make the preseason list. It is in their hands to make the postseason list.

You can review our 2012 postseason top 25 here.

16. Shayne Skov, LB, Stanford

2012 numbers: Skov posted 80 tackles last season, including nine for a loss. He also notched 2.5 sacks and had a pass deflection.

2012 postseason ranking: Unranked.

Making the case for Skov: Skov was one of the most feared middle linebackers in the conference heading into the 2011 season. But a knee injury forced him to miss the bulk of 2011 and he didn’t really start to get his groove back until midway through 2012. But when he did, he was tough to stop. He had a breakout performance in the win over Oregon -- notching 10 tackles (seven solo) which earned him national defensive player of the week honors. He added nine tackles (seven solo, two for a loss) in the Pac-12 title game and eight in the Rose Bowl win. With his decision to return for another season alongside Ben Gardner and Trent Murphy, he brings an explosive and veteran element to what should again be one of the best defenses in the country. He’s already received preseason All-America buzz from several publications and is the fiery, emotional leader of the Cardinal.

17. Kevin Hogan, QB, Stanford

18. Xavier Su'a-Filo, OL, UCLA

19. Morgan Breslin, OLB, USC

20. Colt Lyerla, TE, Oregon

21. Carl Bradford, LB, Arizona State

22. Brandin Cooks, WR, Oregon State

23. Hroniss Grasu, C, Oregon

24. Marion Grice, RB, Arizona State

25. Ben Gardner, DE, Stanford