Good day for Nzegwu

A prospect to watch for the class of 2007 is Platteville, Wis., athlete Louis Nzegwu. He possesses an extraordinary blend of size and athleticism and the versatility to potentially play several positions in college.

A good night's rest made all the difference for Louis Nzegwu. Not that his previous performances at combines this spring had been anything to scoff at, but Nzegwu, a class of 2007 prospect at Platteville (Wis.) High School, thrived at an extremely high level at the Midwest Combine in Schaumburg, Ill., May 13.

"I just went in there confident," Nzegwu said in a telephone interview Tuesday night. "I had a really bad day at the combine before. Didn't get too much sleep because… I woke up late and just jumped in the car and drove up there. But I got a lot more sleep for this combine and I was a little bit more focused than before, and I was connecting on everything. Everything was just going right."

The "combine before" for Nzegwu was a Midwest Combine in Brookfield, Wis., last month. He also participated in the adidas combine in Madison last month. His best results from those two events were a 40-inch vertical jump, a 4.5-second 40-yard dash, a 10-foot, 6-inch broad jump, a 7.49-second 3-cone drill and 15 reps at 185 pounds on the bench press.

Those are very good numbers, but they pale in comparison to what Nzegwu did May 13.

Checking in at 6-foot-3, 224 pounds, Nzegwu ran the 20-yard shuttle in an incredible 3.98 seconds, the 40-yard dash in 4.47 and the 3-cone in 7.01. His vertical jump was 42 ½ inches and he broad jumped 10 feet, 11 ¼ inches. He also completed 14 bench-press reps at 185 pounds. His 40, shuttle, broad jump and vertical jump were the top marks among the 72 participants at the Schaumburg event, and he tied for the best 3-cone (with Milton, Wis., sophomore Justin Spaulding).

"For my weight I thought my 40 time was pretty good… and my vertical was up there," Nzegwu said.

Nzegwu qualified for the Midwest Elite Showcase, which took place in Schaumburg May 20, but he elected not to participate at the behest of his parents and his track coaches at Platteville, who feared he could get injured before his May 22 Wisconsin Interscholastic Athletic Association regional track meet. Nzegwu qualified for sectionals in all four of his events—high jump, triple jump, 400 relay and 800 relay—and will compete in the Division 2 McFarland Sectional tonight.

This month Nzegwu, who has a scholarship offer from Western Michigan, has received phone calls from Minnesota, Illinois, Indiana, Wisconsin, Ball State, Nebraska and Northwestern. Western Michigan, Wisconsin, Northern Illinois, Illinois State and, most recently, Nebraska, have stopped by Platteville during the spring evaluation period.

"(Nebraska has) been talking to me a lot actually," Nzegwu said. "And they saw my numbers and they were really interested in me—not for the position I want. Before they wanted me at a wide receiver/running back. They were going to decide on which position. But now they want me at (defensive) end I'm thinking."

Nzegwu had more than 1,900 total yards and 17 touchdowns as a running back and kick returner last fall. He would prefer to play offense, and specifically wide receiver, in college. He is being recruiting as a potential wide receiver, tight end, defensive end or running back by his assorted suitors.

Nzegwu said he has received "a lot of requests" to attend summer football camps, but that he is not sure which ones he will attend.


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