by Kevin Trahan (@k_trahan)
Leading up to the season, Inside Northwestern will give you a preview of each of Northwestern’s 2012 recruits. We start of the list with Ifeadi Odenigbo.
Hometown: Centerville, Ohio
Star Rating: 4-star, No. 5 OLB
Ht/Wt: 6-3, 217 pounds
Other offers: California, Illinois, Michigan, Michigan State, Notre Dame, Ohio State, Stanford, UCLA, among others.
What’s to like:
Odenigbo is one of the most hyped prospects to come to Northwestern in years and turned down a number of much more prestigious programs to come to Evanston. He’s extremely talented and already at college-ready size. He also has a winner’s attitude, which NU could certainly use more of.
Odenigbo has only played football since his sophomore year of high school, which means he likely has even more room to grow as a player. Scout.com Recruiting Analyst Allen Trieu said he has “as much upside as anyone in the state.”
The bottom line is Pat Fitzgerald pulled off a major upset in getting Odenigbo to Evanston. Ultimately this could start a trend of more high-profile recruits coming to NU, and if Odenigbo lives up to his potential, the team could see results trend upward on the field, as well.
Prospects for this season:
Northwestern is loaded at defensive end, so Odenigbo’s best chance to see the field will be at outside linebacker. There’s a lot of depth there, as well, so he may not start at the beginning of the season, he’s too talented to not see the field in 2012.
What he’s saying:
“If we don't win a Big Ten championship, my time there will be a failure. None of this 6-6 stuff. I want to see 11-1 or 12-0,” Odenigbo told Teddy Greenstein of the Chicago Tribune in January.
What they’re saying:
“He can play linebacker or defensive end. He’s got the versatility to play anywhere on the defense. He’s athletic, he can fly all over the field. I think he can start right away this year.” — Chris Emma, PurpleWildcat.com/Fox Sports Next