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Bearcats Top 10: #4 Jeff Luc

Jeff Luc was one of the most hyped recruits in the class of 2010 when he committed to Florida State. He was the number one middle linebacker in the class of 2010, and he barely saw the field in Tallahassee.

Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports

Jeff Luc came to the Cincinnati Bearcats looking for a chance to play, a chance to prove himself. He found that in Cincinnati, though in fitting fashion he had to wait his turn to play his natural position. Greg Blair was holding down the middle linebacker position when Luc regained his eligibility after transferring from Florida State. So Luc was moved to outside linebacker for the 2013 season. Removed from his natural position Luc struggled a bit in his new role. He had his moments though, with 6.5 TFL's, 1.5 sacks and in a taste of things to come three forced fumbles.

With Blair exhausting his eligibility the Bearcats would move Luc to the middle, finally allowing him to play the position that he was recruited to at a high level. He showed early in the year why he was so highly touted because he was one of the only sources of production on a defense that struggled immensely to stop the run. In the first four games of the year Luc averaged 15 stops a game, that is unheard of in this era of football.

He also became a lightning rod for criticism, especially on twitter for some Bearcats. The thinking seemed to be that all Luc was doing was acquiring meaningless stats for a bad defense by jumping on piles and other such non sense. As if it was Luc's fault that the line of scrimmage was reset five yards backwards on each and every run by UC opponents. What he was really doing was going above and beyond to stop the bleeding of a defense in disarray.

As the defensive line started to find it's footing Luc's tackle totals fell, as well they should have. But Jeff Luc kept on finding ways to impact games. Whether that was by rushing the passer finishing with 6.5 sacks and a further 6 hurries. Those 6.5 sacks are the most by a UC linebacker since Antwan Peek prowled the grounds at Nippert. Luc was disruptive in the running game notching 9 total TFL's. He also forced five fumbles on the year. He was simply a force for the Bearcats this year, and he finally lived up to the billing he received in high school.

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