Established himself as one of the top linebackers in the nation a year ago, and he'll be on the short list for national honors candidates at the position heading into 2009, as well ... Lines up at the weakside linebacker position, where he enters fall camp listed No. 1 on the depth chart ... With 302 career tackles entering the season, he's got a shot at breaking the school career record for tackles of 434 set by James Kinney from 2001-04 ... Is nicknamed "Spoon," which is what most everyone who knows him refers to him by ... Is a very engaging personality who is an outstanding interview.
Had an all-star junior season that saw him win 2nd-Team All-American honors from one national outlet, as he led the Big 12 Conference in tackles (11.07 per game), as well as being a Butkus Award Finalist and a unanimous 1st-Team All-Big 12 selection ... Finished with gaudy numbers of 155 tackles (2nd-most in MU single-season history, 18.5 tackles for loss, 3 interceptions (2 of which he returned for touchdowns), all while leading the team with 7 passes broken up from his linebacker position ... Set himself up for some lofty pre-season honors in 2009 with his season-closing performance in the 2008 Valero Alamo Bowl, when he was named the game's defensive MVP after registering 17 tackles ... Was huge in the overtime win, especially in the extra period, when he had two tackles and a quarterback hurry, and that doesn't even count the crucial play where he and teammate William Moore got in the backfield simultaneously to force a fumble by the Wildcat quarterback that resulted in a nearly 25-yard loss (Moore was officially credited with the sack and forced fumble) ... Opened the year with a huge performance against Illinois, as he intercepted two passes, running the second back 35 yards for a touchdown that essentially sealed the game in the fourth quarter ... Added nine tackles against the Illini and was named the Walter Camp National Defensive Player of the Week ... The next game, scored on a 65-yard interception return against Southeast Missouri State, becoming the first player in MU history to have interception returns for TDs in consecutive games ... Led the team with seven tackles against SEMO, including 1.5 TFLs and a sack ... Had a team-best 12 tackles against Nevada, including 2.5 TFLs ... Led the team with a career-high 20 tackles against Buffalo, including three TFLs for a loss of six yards ... Added a pass break-up and a half-sack and earned Big 12 Defensive Player of the Week for the performance ... Had a team-best nine tackles against Nebraska, five of which were solo stops ... Had eight tackles against Oklahoma State, including two tackles-for-loss (seven yards) ... Had 12 tackles (seven solo) against Texas ... Made five tackles against Colorado, including one TFL ... Once again led the team with 14 tackles against Baylor, including two tackles for loss ... Recorded a sack of BU's Robert Griffin ... Had a team-high 13 tackles against Kansas State, including a pair of tackles for a loss ... Of his 13 stops, 11 came in the first half ... One of the TFL's was a sack of Josh Freeman for a loss of 17 yards ... Was second on the team with nine tackles against Iowa State ... Made seven tackles against Kansas ... Was second on the team with 12 tackles in the Big 12 Championship against Oklahoma ... Displayed his toughness during spring camp, when he suffered torn labrum in his shoulder toward the middle of the camp, but he chose to finish camp before getting surgery so that he could get the experience and help lead the Tiger defense ... Despite playing in pain, still led the way and had 4 tackles, including 2 TFLs in the Black & Gold Game.
2007 SEASON First-year starter who blossomed into a leader on one of the Big 12's top defensive units, as he led the team with 130 tackles ... Also broke up 8 passes on the year (2nd-most on the team), and had two more balls that he deflected on pass rushes that were intercepted by FS William Moore - one of which Moore returned for a back-breaking touchdown in the Cotton Bowl against Arkansas ... Had double-digit tackle games seven times on the season, as he showed a constant ability to be around the ball and make contact ... Led the team with 11 tackles in his first-career collegiate start against Illinois ... Had a pair of tackles for loss and added a forced fumble and a pass breakup ... Was credited with the forced fumble near the MU goalline that was scooped up by teammate Pig Brown and returned 100 yards for a huge momentum-swinging TD ... Had 10 stops (eight solos) against Ole Miss ... Was third on the squad with 11 tackles against Western Michigan ... Had a team-best 12 tackles against Illinois State and nine more against Nebraska, including a tackle for loss ... Made 10 stops against Oklahoma ... Had nine tackles in a great defensive effort against Texas Tech ... Had a team-high 12 stops against Iowa State ... Made four tackles and had his first career fumble recovery against Colorado ... Tied for the team lead with eight tackles against Texas A&M ... Lead the team again with 12 tackles against Kansas State, including two sacks ... Also had a forced fumble against KSU ... Tied for the team lead with seven tackles against Kansas ... Was second on the team with nine tackles in the Big 12 Championship against Oklahoma ... Ranked 5th in the Big 12 with his 130 tackles.
2006 SEASON Saw action in all 13 games, primarily on various special teams units, and was named Mizzou's special teams player of the year, as he led the team with 9 tackles on kickoff coverage ... Had 17 tackles in all for the season, and had stops in 9-of-13 games ... Other multiple-tackle outings came against Kansas State and at Nebraska, with 3 tackles in each game ... Had a half-tackle for loss in consecutive games against Ohio (2 yards) and Colorado (10 yards) ... Saw the field in reserve duty on defense, and was listed as the backup on the depth chart at middle linebacker to senior co-captain Dedrick Harrington ... Earned playing time with a strong fall camp, and showed coaches that he was ready to play right away, despite his youth ... In his collegiate debut versus Murray State, had 5 tackles and blocked a punt that went out of the endzone for a safety ... One of four true freshmen to play for the Tigers in 2006, joining fellow Texans Danario Alexander (WR), Jared Perry (WR) and Del Howard (CB).
HIGH SCHOOL Versatile athlete who was an accomplished three-sport star in Texas, including as a linebacker in football ... Was named the Texas District 22-3A player of the year as a senior, after making 98 tackles in 2005 for Jasper ... Had 8 tackles for loss in 2005, and added 4 QB sacks and 2 interceptions from his linebacker position as well, and was a 2nd-Team All-State pick ... Also played receiver on offense, and had 27 catches for 428 yards and 7 TDs on that side of the ball ... Was a 1st-Team All-District selection as a junior in 2004 at linebacker, after registering 105 tackles, 6 tackles for loss, 2 QB sacks and 3 interceptions ... Was named the 22-3A defensive newcomer of the year as a sophomore in 2003, when he amassed 101 stops, 3 tackles for loss, 1 QB sack and 2 interceptions ... Excellent all-around athlete who was an All-State high jumper in track, and an All-District performer as a guard in basketball ... High school coach - Danny Lauve.
PERSONAL Parents - Develous & Elwanda Weatherspoon ... Has an interest in studying business administration at Mizzou's top-notch School of Business ... Chose Mizzou over Iowa State, Houston, Tulane and TCU, among others ... Primary Mizzou recruiter - Matt Eberflus.