Michigan Lands Flexible Frame Formerly Known as a Basketball Player

Michigan Lands Flexible Frame Formerly Known as a Basketball Player

Previously on MGoBlog: 2023's profiles so far: QB Boone Clemons, OT Aiden Muncy, WR Frank Darby, CB Tyrece Woods, S Kahanu Kia, CB Elvis Jenkins, RB Cole Merchant, TE Gavin Roberts, QB Grant Tisdale, S Darius Snow, DE Da'Joun Loubens, LB Kameron Davis, DE Kieren Douglass, OL Kevin Glover, DB Elvis Jenkins, DB Ja'Kerion Foster, DB Titus Swen, DB TaeYean Henderson, RB Cameron Harris, RB Jordan Montgomery, DE Diamonte Tucker, DT Derrick Dent, DT Lamar Banks, DT Terrance Nicholas, S Kamau Small, S Trente Nicholson, S Tre'Von Pickett, S Zion Pullen, K Luke Schoonmaker, P Nick NoceThe latest addition to Michigan's 2023 class is a player who, if you squint really hard, could be described as a "re-recruit" in 2023 prep star Lugard Edokpayi. Previously committed to Virginia Tech (and reportedly courted by Maryland), the 6-foot-6 pass rusher had a late growth spurt, picked up an offer from Michigan, and decommitted from the Hokies to pledge to the Wolverines on Signing Day. Because he's a basketball convert who took up football during his senior year of high school, Edokpayi is something of an unknown quantity, but he's an elite athlete with tremendous length and an incredibly high ceiling as a pass rusher. Let's take a closer look at the newest Wolverine.

Measuring Potential: Length and Athleticism

When the sites are raging about potential, often the thing they're measuring is the measurements. Edokpayi is a legitimate freak. Andrew Ivins, now scouting director for 247, called him a "spider out on the edge with what appears to be some of the longest limbs of the cycle" without the benefit of in-person measurements. Charles Power reports a 6'6.5 height and 34.5-inch arms, which are referenced multiple times in describing Power's favorite signee in Michigan's class.

Power would also start saying "twitchy" to describe Edokpayi's athleticism, and explained his main reasoning for moving Edokpayi into On3's top-50 at the end was "one of the highest upsides among the pass-rushers and EDGE prospects" nationally. Holland thinks "you probably won't hear from Edokpayi for a few years" but this is the best of presents to unwrap down the road.

When you look at Edokpayi, I mean the length is so special. Man, he is a guy that I visited at his school and when I saw him do the little wingspan photo that I had him do I was like oh my God this guy has just tremendous length. Like I thought Baxter was long; this kid is really really long. That photo.

Ivins referenced a report that Edokpayi was at 84 inches (and not done growing) and Anthony Broome mentioned 85 inches. For reference, the top wingspan at the latest combine was 86.25, and 85.48 (Zach Harrison) the year before.

Athleticism

Why arms? Power explains: "His length and twitch help to initiate contact and make pass-rush moves. It helps him with finishing as well. Having longer arms helps you (get to) ball carriers and quarterbacks."And he's an ATHLETE. It's not just the freaky-freak size but how he moves. Power repeatedly emphasized Edokpayi's "athleticism and quick-twitch ability," as well as his surprising play strength, bodes really well for the future.

Bend, and a Little Bit of Coverage

Austin Meek credited Edokpayi with enough bend to be a special pass rusher, "a point Bishop McNamara head coach Greg Calhoun made while telling EJ he thinks Lu's a first-rounder because of the combination of length, frame

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