BOULDER — Fall camp is on the way.

The University of Colorado hasn’t announced when, exactly, camp will start this season, but the first week of August is typically a safe guess. With about one month left until the 2021 Colorado Buffaloes football team hits the grass for the first time, we can start looking ahead to the biggest expected storylines of August.

In the first of 10 stories previewing what’s on the way, we’re digging into one of the most competitive position battles on the team: inside linebacker.

While Nate Landman has solidified himself among the best of the best at the position both in the nation and in Colorado football history, the other starting job is up for grabs.

Senior Akil Jones held down the starting job since the middle of the 2019 season, but he entered the transfer portal in January. When he was injured and missed the Arizona game last season, junior Jon Van Diest filled in.

By the end of the regular season, Jones had played 229 defensive snaps, Van Diest had played 85 snaps and junior Quinn Perry played 40.

But the competition isn’t just about Van Diest and Perry; a couple of young linebackers could be ready to see the field and the Buffs also added two intriguing veterans from the transfer portal over the offseason.

At least five players will be in a horse race for the second starting inside linebacker… assuming that Nate Landman is ready to torn from a torn Achilles’ tendon sustained in December.

That’s where we’ll start.

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Henry was born in Columbia Falls, Montana and graduated from Columbia Falls High School in 2015. He earned bachelor's degrees in journalism and economics from the University of Montana in 2019. Henry joined DNVR as a remote staff writer in 2017, providing support to BSN's Broncos beat reporters. He interned at DNVR headquarters in the summer of 2018 and accepted a full-time position after graduating from UM. Follow Henry on Twitter - @HenryChisholm

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