The Pack will make a huge push to add much needed depth at LB in the class of 2005 and they've turned their attention north to one of New Jersey's top defensive prospects in LB Mike Hanson of Teaneck (NJ) High School.
Rated the No. 16 player in NJ by SuperPrep, Hanson is coming off a stellar junior season in which he tallied 90 tackles, six sacks, four forced fumbles and two defensive touchdowns. Hanson's Teaneck squad played their first game of the season this past weekend and the senior came up big with 12 tackles.
Recruiting for Hanson took off after an impressive showing at a combine held in Giants stadium last May. College scouts began to take notice and he has since picked up several scholarship offers from some big-time programs.
At 6-2, 225 pounds, Hanson is a sideline to sideline guy who feels best suited for the MLB spot in college. He told Pack Pride that he feels his game speed is what sets him apart from other ‘backers.
"I think I'm better suited for MLB," said Hanson. "I'm faster than most LB's because I can run like a 4.5 (second 40-yard dash). I also play WR and TE and can catch pretty well."
So far, Hanson is hearing the most from NC State, Wisconsin, Indiana, Louisville, Virginia and Maryland with offers already on the table from Indiana, Wisconsin, Louisville, Virginia and NC State. During the month of September he's fielded calls from Indiana, Wisconsin and Louisville.
Hanson is being recruited by Pack OL coach Mike Barry and, despite not hearing from Barry this month, still holds NC State in high regard.
"NC State is in my top three," said Hanson. "I really wouldn't mind going there because my grandmother is down there. I watched them play on Saturday and they played pretty good. I really liked the way coach Barry came at me. He approached me with good information as far as what I would be doing. I'm really interested in them."
Indiana and Wisconsin round out his top three. And while the college he ultimately decides on may be up in the air, Hanson is sure of what he'll be primarily focused on when the time comes to settle on a school.
"Coming in and playing early, that's the main thing for me," said Hanson. "I don't want to sit around two years and play my junior year. I'm ready to play."
Hanson hopes to major in some field related to Math.