Not disrespected, but motivated.
Those four words sums up the recruiting period for 2018 La Habra (Calif.) Sonora defensive back Chigozie Anusiem, as the tall 6-foot-2, 178-pound cornerback looks the part of a bona fide lockdown defender college programs would crave, but only holds one offer from Wyoming. Anusiem is looking for more – especially since his fellow teammates on his club team Explosive Athletic Training (EAT), Jeremy Moussa and Khoury Bethley, are starting to see the offers roll their way.
Additionally, he plays for a high school that not only isn’t considered a household name in Orange County, but endured an 0-10 season last year.
Still, Anusiem doesn’t feel discouraged about the way his recruiting session has gone.
“I don't feel disrespected, it just motivates me knowing that I am being over looked right now,” Anusiem told Scout.
The Cowboys decided to pull the trigger on an offer before Anusiem competed at The Opening Los Angeles Regional on March 12. Anusiem not only wowed some of the volunteer coaches and spectators on the El Camino College sprint turf at The Opening, but he zipped his way to a 4.61 40-yard dash time.
He’s already impressed with what Wyoming does defensively, as Cowboys cornerbacks coach John Richardson has emerged as the main guy trying to pilfer Anusiem.
“They play a lot of zone mixed with man and they also said that they like doing off man and press man,” Anusiem said. “They like long corners because of the zone they play and they like getting interceptions, which is why they like their corners long.”
The 3.0 student said that UCLA, Eastern Washington, Army, San Diego State and Minnesota have asked about him regarding his cornerback play. Regarding the Golden Gophers, Anusiem says new head coach P.J. Fleck contacted him.
“P.J. Fleck is cool. He’s seen my film and told me that he would like for me to come out there (for an unofficial visit),” Anusiem said.
His frame, athleticism and hip angles allowed him to break up nine passes last season for the Raiders, as he emerged as their top secondary playmaker. A lot of his off-season training has been with Prentice Byrd, who now runs EAT.
“He has taught me to care about the little things and be a perfectionist,” Anusiem said.
Like most aspiring college football prospects when they receive their first offer, Anusiem breathed a collective sigh of relief.
“It feels really good. I’ve been working on this since I was a freshman. I just remember all those days when I didn’t want to get up, but I had to remember my goal (of getting an offer) and it feels amazing,” Anusiem said.
But, there’s still that part of him that believes the outside world around him is overlooking him, making him feel motivated, but not disresptected.
“Yes, most definitely,” Anusiem said. “I feel like my school isn’t a big-name school. People have said ‘You’ve got an offer, but you’re not that big, so I’m here to prove myself. It 100% drives me.”