CMU defender earns No. 11 on non-AQ list

No. 11: Nick Bellore, LB, Central Michigan

2009 numbers: Led the Chippewas with 132 tackles and 13 tackles for loss. He also had three sacks and two interceptions.

Making the case for Bellore: Bellore, who is heading into his senior season, is the defensive mainstay for the Chippewas and one of the top linebackers in the Mid-American Conference. He’s been the conference’s first-team linebacker each of the past two seasons and led the Chippewas in tackles each of those seasons. Bellore will be relied upon heavily this year as the Chippewas navigate through a season with a new head coach and without several key players who have helped the team win conference titles. Look for Bellore to lead the team in tackles for a third consecutive season and to be one of the most effective linebackers in the country.