Chad Simmons

Alabama offers freshman defensive end and Nigerian native Ani Izuchukwu

The lone freshman to add an Alabama offer during its massive prospect camp last week was Ani Izuchukwu, a Nigerian native new to America and football itself.

Alabama hosted a massive prospect camp last week in Tuscaloosa which spurred a hot recruiting period for the program, snagging five commitments in the last week in the rising-senior class.

But many promising underclassmen turned heads in town, too, including the lone class of 2019 prospect to pick up a scholarship offer during the action -- Ani Izuchukwu.

The Nigerian native has been playing football less than a year but his raw talent and 6-foot-4, 215-pound frame has resulted in scholarship offers by the bundle but even he knows the scale of what adding an Alabama offer means.

“I was told I have been offered by one of the Alabama coach when I finish talking to coach [Nick] Saban,” he said. “He told me, ‘nice work’ and I should keep working hard, never stop grinding and also in education.

“I’m so happy for this offer and it motivate me to keep working hard because to be a freshman getting (an) Alabama offer is not easy.”

Izuchukwu not only impressed Saban and company physically during the workouts, but in between the ears as well.

“They told me I have that mindset of learning things quick, that I should keep working hard,” he said. “(I) Been playing football for nine to 10 months now, I really thank God for everything.

“Because it’s not easy to have Alabama offer as a freshman.”

The camp stop was the initial Alabama visit for the rising-sophomore defensive end who is prepping at Nashville (Tenn.) Davidson Academy.

“It was awesome,” Izuchukwu said of the campus. “I loved it, hoping to come over soon for more camps.”

One of the top class of 2019 names to know at this early juncture, the recruiting process is one of the things further down the pecking order for the intriguing prospect. While more and more offers will be on the table, learning the game of football and how to handle being an American high school student will have to come well before making a college decision.

That’s the plan, anyway.

“Nothing much,” Izuchukwu said of what’s next. “But get to know the game and what (I’m) doing whenever I’m on the pitch (field) to play and also work hard on my education, too.”

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