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NU Football BIO
52
Josh Banderas
Player Profile:
Josh Banderas 1075438
Position: Linebacker
Height: 6'3"
Weight: 240
Year: Senior
Hometown: Lincoln, Neb.
High School: Southwest
Major: Management

Honors & Awards
» 2016 Team Captain
» Honorable-Mention All-Big Ten (Coaches, Media, 2016)
» Academic All-Big Ten (2014, 2015, 2016)
» Big Ten Distinguished Scholar (2016)
» 2016 Cletus Fischer Native Son Award
» True Freshman All-America Team (247Sports, 2013)
» Honorable-Mention Big Ten All-Freshman Team (BTN, 2013)
» Six-Time Nebraska Scholar-Athlete Honor Roll (Fall, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016; Spring 2015, 2016)
» Nebraska Student-Athlete HERO Leadership Award (2016)
» Brook Berringer Citizenship Team (2014, 2016)
» Tom Osborne Citizenship Team (2014, 2016)

Lincoln native Josh Banderas completed his Nebraska career with an outstanding senior season in 2016. One of four team captains, Banderas led the Huskers in tackles from his middle linebacker position, racking up 93 tackles.

The 6-3, 240-pound Banderas was a prominent member of the Blackshirt defense for four seasons, starting 31 games in his career. Banderas showed the versatility to play multiple linebacker posititions during his career, and was also adept at defending both the run and the pass. Banderas finished his career with 232 career tackles to rank 19th in school history. 

Off the field, Banderas was an Academic All-Big Ten team each of his final three seasons. Despite not redshirting Banderas graduated with a degree in management in 2017, completing his degree in just 3 1/2 years. Banderas is a second-generation Husker as his father, Tom, was a three-year letterwinner at tight end in the 1980s.

2016 (Senior)
Banderas was the leader of the Nebraska defense as a senior, manning the MIKE linebacker spot. He led the team with 93 tackles, including 40 solo stops and added eight tackles for loss. Banderas had three double-figure tackle games, and made at least eight tackles in each of the final seven regular-season contests. For his play, Banderas earned honorable-mention All-Big Ten accolades.

Banderas had five tackles and a tackle for loss to help the Huskers keep the Oregon offense in check in a September victory. He began the best football of his career with 11 tackles, including eight solo stops and a tackle for loss at Indiana. A week later, Banderas had a season-high 13 tackles and a tackle for loss in a victory over Purdue. 

Banderas had eight tackles in an overtime loss at Wisconsin. He posted his final double-figure tackle effort with 11 tackles and a season-high two tackles for loss in a hard-fought win over Minnesota. He led the team with nine tackles on Senior Day against Maryland and closed the regular season with nine tackles at Iowa. In addition to his work at linebacker, Banderas played special teams for the second half of the year and was one of Nebraska's top players on coverage units. 

2015 (Junior)
Banderas started nine games at middle linebacker, including each of the final seven games. He missed four of the first six games with a groin injury, but ranked among Nebraska’s top tacklers with 61 stops. Banderas tied for second on the team with seven tackles for loss, made at least six tackles in six games and had three double-figure tackle outings.

Banderas had six tackles and two tackles for loss against BYU, but was injured in the game causing him to miss four of the next five games. He returned to the starting lineup at Minnesota and made 10 tackles, including eight solo stops and a tackle for loss.

Banderas had at least nine tackles against Northwestern, Purdue and Michigan State, including 10-tackle efforts against the Wildcats and Spartans. He made six tackles, including two tackles for loss at Rutgers and had four tackles each against Iowa and UCLA.

2014 (Sophomore)
Banderas played in 12 games with six starts. He finished with 50 tackles, including 19 solo stops. He had at least four tackles in five games, highlighted by a career-high 14 tackles against USC. Banderas also saw action on coverage units, helping the Huskers feature one of the nation’s top special teams units.

In addition to his 14-tackle effort vs. USC, Banderas made 10 tackles and a tackle for loss against McNeese State and had five tackles against Miami. He had four tackles and a tackle for loss at Fresno State.

2013 (Freshman)
Banderas played in every game and made four starts as a true freshman. He totaled 28 tackles, including 12 solo stops, with two sacks and three tackles for loss. Banderas had a season-high 11 tackles, a sack and two tackles for loss against UCLA.

Before Nebraska (Lincoln Southwest HS)
Banderas was a two-way standout for Coach Mark King at Lincoln Southwest, carrying the ball 189 times for 1,237 yards and 18 touchdowns as a senior. From his linebacker spot, he had 119 total tackles, including 44 unassisted tackles, 11 tackles for loss and two interceptions.

Banderas rushed for better than 100 yards six times and had four games with 15 or more tackles. His helped Southwest to a 6-4 record and a trip to the Class A state playoffs. Banderas was named the honorary captain of both the Omaha World-Herald and Lincoln Journal Star all-state teams.

Banderas focused on linebacker in the first two years. As a junior in 2011, he racked up 127 tackles to help LSW to a 9-2 record and a trip to the state quarterfinals. He earned first-team Super State honors from the Lincoln Journal Star and first-team All-Nebraska honors from the World-Herald for his play. Banderas made 30 tackles in just five games as a sophomore.

Banderas was also a track standout, competing in four events in the Class A state meet as a senior. He was sixth in the 110-meter hurdles, seventh in the 300-meter hurdles and seventh in both the shot put and discus. Banderas won the 110-meter hurdles as a junior while finishing second in the 300-meter hurdles. As a sophomore, Banderas finished third in the 110-meter hurdles.

Banderas committed to the Huskers in April of 2012, choosing Nebraska over a number of scholarship offers, including Oregon, Kansas State, Iowa, Iowa State and Vanderbilt. He was ranked among the nation’s top 20 linebackers and top 300 overall players by 247 Sports, Rivals and Fox Sports. Banderas participated in the Army All-American game in San Antonio.

Personal
Banderas was born on Feb. 22, 1995, and is the son of Tom and Amy Banderas. His father, Tom, played tight end at Nebraska, lettering three years from 1985 to 1987. The younger Banderas is a six-time member of the Nebraska Scholar-Athlete Honor Roll. He earned a spot on the Brook Berringer and Tom Osborne Citizenship teams in 2014 and 2016. Banderas has volunteered time with the Big Brothers/Big Sisters, American Education Week, NFL Fuel Up to Play 60, School is Cool Week and the Souper Bowl of Caring. He also was one of 18 Nebraska student-athletes to participate in a NoFilter Service Abroad trip to Guatemala in May of 2015.

Banderas' Career Statistics

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Tackles

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Fum.

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QB

Year

G/S

UT

AT

TT

TFL

Sacks

C-R

BK

PBU

PI

Hry.

2013 13/4 12 16 28 3-9 2.0-8 0-0 0 1 0 1
2014 12/6 19 31 50 2-5 0.0-0 0-0 0 0 0 1

2015

9/9 34 27 61 7-10 0.0-0 0-0 0 2 0 1

2016

13/12 40 53 93 8-13 0.5-5 0-0 0 0 0 3

Totals

47/31 105 
127 
232 20-39 2.5-13 0-0 3
0 6

 
Single-Game Highs
» Tackles - 14 vs. USC (2014 Holiday Bowl)
» Tackles for Loss - 2, four times
» Sacks - 1 (twice)

Josh Photos: