Depleted at the position, Warriors linebackers hope depth pays off

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The Rainbow Warriors football team will take on Oregon State on Saturday. They’ll be doing it with a depleted linebacking corps. Top guy Penei Pavihi is out for the year and Jeremiah Pritchard likely won’t play with a leg injury.

Entering the year, the linebackers were one of the deeper positions on the roster. Now, like it or not, they have the chance to prove how deep they really are.

“There’s no other choice pretty much,” said senior linebacker Solomon Matautia. “Next man up and we’re all just going to keep pushing each other to get better. Now since there’s multiple guys down we just got to get the younger guys to get rolling. Because of the experience that I have, now what’s next for me is to help bring along the other guys.”

“Last year we went through a similar thing with Jahlani,” said Rainbow Warriors defensive coordinator Corey Batoon, referring to now Detroit Lion Jahlani Tavai’s season ending injury. “So it is that mindset of next man up. But the next man up a lot of times they’re not as plugged in and focused. Now they see that they have an opportunity to press the depth. You always look at the positive. This is an opportunity for another guy to get ready to go as the other guys do what they need to do in terms of getting their bodies back.”

Kickoff versus the Beavers is at 6:00pm Saturday night at Aloha Stadium. The ‘Bows are trying to go 2-0 this season, and against the PAC-12.

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