Unexpected Rise for Akingbulu

Feb. 20 -- The offensive lineman from Harbor City (Calif.) Narbonne, Alex Akingbulu, has been floored by the offers he's gotten after playing just one season so far...

Harbor City (Calif.) Narbonne offensive tackle Alex Akingbulu (6-6, 255) never expected to be in the position he was.

A half-dozen offers from coast-to-coast.

More potentially coming.

If anything, Akingbulu thought it would be coming for the hardwood.

“I remember a year ago, I was playing basketball and Coach (Manuel) Douglas pulled me aside in the gym and said ‘Alex, you could go to college playing football, so why don’t you come out,” said Akingbulu. “I gave it some thought and decided to go play football.”

Its paid off handsomely.

In just one year of playing, Akingbulu helped lead the Gauchos to a CIF City Section title.

Once his film made the rounds, his life changed.

Michigan and new coach Jim Harbaugh triggered the change when they offered.

“I was speechless when that happened,” said Akingbulu. “That’s a really big school so for that to be my first offer, that was a blessing.”

Then came offers from Utah and Colorado State. UCLA, Cal and Boston College would follow suit.

And he may just be getting started.

USC, I went to their Junior Day and I started talking to their new (OL) coach, Coach (Bob) Connelly so we’ll see what happens,” said Akingbulu.

UCLA’s offer was a big one for Akingbulu, who has a strong connection to the local school.

“The offer from UCLA was a big deal,” said Akingbulu. “It’s close to home and that’s important. And my sister goes to UCLA. So my family knows a lot about UCLA. That was a big deal. My sister was really happy and said I better go there. She knows its my decision but as my big sister, she really wants me there. But she’s happy for me either way”

Akingbulu talked with offensive line coach Adrian Klemm, who extended the offer.

“Coach Klemm offered me and he’s a real cool guy and we get along real well,” said Akingbulu. “He wants me to come up and visit and check out the school.”

Akingbulu has been talking with Washington and Oregon too and thinks they could be offering soon.

For now, he’s staying pretty open.

“To be honest, all of my offers are big, so I’m just happy and blessed for any offer I get and grateful for any offer,” said Akingbulu.

Akingbulu said he plans to attend The Opening Regional Camp in Los Angeles next month.

Academically, he has a 3.1 and will take the SAT in March.


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