Sep 14, 2013; University Park, PA, USA; Penn State Nittany Lions linebacker Gary Wooten (8) attempts to tackle Central Florida Knights wide receiver Rannell Hall (6) during the second quarter at Beaver Stadium. Central Florida defeated Penn State 34-31. Mandatory Credit: Matthew O

Penn State Football Player Preview: LB Gary Wooten

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With our 2014 player profiles winding down, we take a look today at linebacker Gary Wooten.

Coming out of high school, Wooten was rated as a 3-star prospect by 247Sports.com. The six-foot-two, 238-pound linebacker is a product of Hialeah Senior High School in Miami, Florida.

Last season, Wooten saw very limited action on defense, appearing briefly in ten games. During those ten games he recorded three solo tackles and assisted on three more. However, Wooten will have the opportunity to play a bigger role this season, as he battles for a starting job at a position that is light on depth.

During spring practice, Wooten was turning heads and catching the attention of the new coaching staff and veteran linebacker Mike Hull. Hull told reporters in the spring that one player that really improved and made the biggest strides was Gary Wooten.

Hull told Greg Pickel of PennLive.com:

“It’s been a huge difference. I think the new staff, with the way they coach and their style and energy, has helped him flourish,” Hull said. “It’s unbelievable. He’s always had the physical tools to be great. He just really is putting it all together and playing fast and physical. He’s really going to help the whole linebacker corps as a group.”

It is believed that Wooten is currently listed on the depth chart behind middle linebacker Mike Hull, but Coach Franklin and staff have been adamant about rotating guys in and out to keep players fresh.

This should bode well for Wooten who should most certainly see an increase in production from a season ago. We expect him to see significant playing time on special teams and rotate in and out with Hull if and when he needs a breather.

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