Yannick Ngakoue is one of the last available middle linebackers who can make an immediate impact.
Needless to say, his recruitment is beginning to hit a fever pitch.
The 6’3” 240lb Ngakoue, from Friendship Collegiate Academy in Washington, D.C., has the size/speed/strength combination to be able to see playing time as a true freshman. He’s a smart and instinctive linebacker who could play a host of positions. He could play inside in a 3-4 or a 4-3, he could play outside in a 3-4 or even play in a three-point stance at weakside end in a 4-3. It’s easy to see why he’s so highly coveted.
Ngakoue used to be committed to the Maryland Terrapins (with three of his high school teammates, all of which are still headed to MD), but changed his mind earlier in the season.
Don’t fret, Terps fans, Maryland still has a chance. But they’re in for a dogfight.
What sticks out to him about each school?
He likes the fact that the ‘Canes want to use him primarily as a pass rusher, since he feels that’s particularly a strong suit. He likes the FSU coaching staff. He likes the fact that he would be able to play early at South Carolina. And he loves the location of Maryland. The fact that Maryland runs a 3-4 is just the icing on top.
So the last month in College Football Recruiting will probably go down to the wire for Ngakoue. He’s still planning on taking visits to both Miami and FSU. Obviously those visits will play a huge role in his decision-making process.
In the end, I see Ngakoue picking Maryland on National Signing Day. He’s got three very talented teammates heading there, he could see playing time immediately, and they’re an ideal distance away. He’s indicated that he wants his mother to see his games, so the location of College Park MD to D.C. is perfect.
Stranger things have happened in recruiting, but I’d really be surprised to see Ngakoue head south for college ball.