Linebacker Target Yannick Ngakoue Gives WVU Top Marks - WVU Football, WVU Basketball, News - Mountaineer Sports

Linebacker Target Yannick Ngakoue Gives WVU Top Marks


Yannick Ngakoue uses scientific methods to grade the teams that are after his services at the linebacker position.

One of West Virginia's – and many teams' nationally – top 2013 targets has developed a rating system for his recruiting process and come to a conclusion about his Easter visit to Morgantown.

"It was really great," says Ngakoue. "On a scale from one to 10, it was a 9.5. I really liked it. The atmosphere and the people were really good."

A 6-foot-2, 226-pound outside linebacker, Ngakoue's rating for the Mountaineers is much in line with the way he has felt about the team for quite some time now.

The Washington, D.C. product currently fields 19 offers with a list that continues to grow, but of all the interest he's gotten recently, West Virginia was the first program to offer.

WVU cornerbacks coach Daron Roberts was struck by Ngakoue's junior film and called his Friendship Collegiate Academy coach to let him know he had a spot in their locker room if he was interested. That early start is proving a major boost for the Mountaineers as others follow their lead.

"They said they only needed to watch two plays on my highlight tape and they just knew that they needed me," says Ngakoue. "The fact that they offered me first means they recognized my real talents, so I've always kept them in mind because they offered me even before my hometown school offered me. Plus, I like it down there."

His visit to campus only confirmed much of what Roberts had discussed with him over the phone leading up to it. A tour of the facilities and a brief trip around town were enough keep him intrigued, but the work he saw on the field when the team held its first spring scrimmage is what really stood out.

"They were really physical," he says. "They were so organized in individuals and throughout the practice."

Ngakoue, a 4-star prospect according to, was one of a number of highly rated recruits on hand for the scrimmage. He happened to make the road trip from D.C. with another top talent, his teammate, Derwin Gray.

The offensive lineman stood out in the crowd of visitors and Ngakoue says he also came away impressed by WVU. It was good to have a trusted friend with him as he viewed what the Mountaineers had to offer so he could bounce ideas back and forth, but Ngakoue says he and Gray have not made any plans of being a package deal.

"We get that all the time," he laughs. "If it's meant for us to be at the same place, we might be at the same place. But if it's not, it's not. Schools talk about stuff like that, but we're really not focused on anything like that right now."

What he is focused on is a senior year of football, which will also be his first at Friendship Collegiate Academy after transferring from Archbishop Carroll High School.

He wants to lead his new team to the greatest heights of prep football before truly shifting his attention to his future, but he knows the time is approaching that a big decision must be made.

Right now, he lists WVU in his "top schools," but it is a list that has plenty of company. South Carolina, Auburn, Maryland, Tennessee and North Carolina escape his mouth as the other schools with that designation of "top," with plenty of time for others to throw their offers on the table.

WVU's early offer combined with a score of 9.5 that seems difficult to top certainly has the Mountaineers in contention for one of their most prized prospects.

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