On February 9th, Bolingbrook (Ill.) High senior Izayah Green-May had zero offers. In a little over two months, the three-star prospect has become one of the most popular recruits in the Midwest.
Now sitting with 19 scholarship offers, including 10 from power-five conference schools, Green-May has caught the eye of many coaching staffs with his athleticism, frame and lateral range. One of those staffs is Wisconsin, which see the 6-5, 205-pound prospect as an outside linebacker, and Green-May has already started gravitating toward the Badgers.
In the last 30 days, Green-May has already made two visits to the campus and has emerged as one of UW’s top defensive targets. BadgerNation takes a closer look at what makes Green-May so coveted.
Although he has no verified 40 time, Green-May is one of the premier athletes in the state of Illinois because his speed and strength pops off his film. Playing with a high motor, Green-May uses his frame to gain leverage on linemen and get into the backfield to make a play.
“I'm fast; you can't teach speed and that's how I play,” Green-May said. “I know I can blow my opponents away with my speed and I always know people/scouts are watching me and my game."
Green-May’s size, strong frame and athleticism help him shed blocks and get to the ball carrier. While he admits he needs to improve his run defense in the middle of the field, Green-May never stops working on his pursuit of the quarterback or the ball carrier.
“Coach Chryst says he loves my game,” Green-May said. “He told me I need to be more patient when filling the holes, but he says he loves my run stopping ability."
Ranked the second defensive end in Illinois, sixth in Midwest and the 43rd overall in country by Scout.com, Green-May certainly has a worthy ranking. However, the hard-hitting prospect plays with a chip on his shoulder based on those numbers.
“When I go out and play, I know I'm better than my rankings,” he said. “’I want to make sure those rankings change and I climb up the rankings. It makes me mad and that is my motivation on the field."
Although the Badgers have added numerous linebackers in the last two recruiting cycles, adding a least a pair in 2017 seems like the current plan. With close proximity to his home and having built a strong relationship with the coaching staff, particular Chryst and outside linebackers coach Tim Tibesar, Green-May sees a fit in Madison.
“Wisconsin is definitely up there on my list,” he said. “I don't have a top 5 or anything like that, but they are for sure on my radar. The school spirit is insane. No other school is like that, and my visit was so personalized. No other school did what Wisconsin did by introducing me to players and coaches. That will make a huge impact on my decision as time goes on."