Sykes Expects Big Things from Wisconsin

Currently holding offers from Illinois, Purdue, Toledo and Northern Illinois, Oak Park River Forest (Ill.) HS junior defensive end Nile Sykes has high hopes for an offer from the University of Wisconsin.

MADISON - Although Oak Park River Forest (Ill.) HS junior Nile Sykes plays defensive end for his high school team, the 6-1, 225-pound athlete has the special ability to be a multidimensional player at the college level. With Sykes having the ability to play linebacker or defensive end in college can only help boost Sykes' recruiting stock.

Sykes has been hitting the football camps to show off his versatility to different college coaches, including attending Michigan State and Wisconsin football camps.

"I think the Wisconsin camp went well for me," Sykes told Badger Nation. "The coaches like me. I struggled a little at defensive end but I was able to pick it up when I started playing linebacker. After the camp, defensive coordinator Chris Ash said we'd be in touch."

While Sykes attended the Badger football camp, the Wisconsin coaches were interested to see where Sykes' strengths were as a defensive lineman and at linebacker. Sykes also received some one-on-one time with linebacker coach Andy Buh.

"They wanted to see how I got off the ball when I lined up at defensive end," Sykes said. "I thought I displayed good speed coming off the ball. They were also curious to see my technique and what kind of moves I used to get to the quarterback or to the ball carrier. When I was at linebacker they were curious to see if I was athletic enough to cover the running back and if I was quick enough to fill the gap.

"Coach Buh put me and another linebacker through some drills during the camp. He wanted to see how we moved and we did a bunch of bag drills."

Sykes recruiting contact at Wisconsin is defensive coordinator Chris Ash. Sykes says they're still getting to know each other, but are building a good relationship so far.

"I talked to him a couple days after the camp (and) he told me that they were impressed with how I played," Sykes said. I'm going to try and get a hold of him sometime this week but we get along well and I like him. He's a good coach. I'm definitely trying to get to some Badger games this coming fall."

Besides attending the Michigan State and Wisconsin football camps, Sykes just recently competed at Ohio State'S Friday Night Lights camp.

"It was awesome," Sykes said. "It was one of the best camps I attended. I killed it. I showed that I was athletic enough at defensive end and linebacker. The Ohio State coaches told me were going to stay in touch and I'm going to try and make a game. I have (defensive line coach) Mike Vrabel's contact information. It was my first time meeting him and he's a really nice guy and he's a good coach."

Besides attending the camps, Sykes trains with the Core 6 gym in Chicago with his intention to become stronger and over match his opponents on the football field.

"Basically when I go there, our coaches put us through work outs," Sykes said. "We'll work on upper body one day and then lower body the next. But I don't do any position drills though when I'm there. It's a real good program."

Sykes had a strong season this past year when he recorded 12 sacks and currently holds offers from Illinois, Purdue, Toledo, and Northern Illinois. He believes the Buckeyes and the Badgers could possibly join his offer list in the future.

"I just may have to be patient" Sykes said. "Both the Buckeyes and Badgers know I can play good football."

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