FOOTBALL: Nwagbuo to Provide Bulk to D-line
Ogemdi Nwagbuo
GSN Football Beat
Posted Jul 17, 2007


For too long, the Spartan’s have been over-reliant on JUCOs to fill needs. While such players should be evaluated on a player-by-player basis, Dantonio has made it clear the program must move away from reliance on the JUCO quick fix. For now, Nwagbuo will work to prove conventional wisdom wrong.

Ogembi Nwagbuo will bring an important quality to the Spartan defensive line in 2007: seasoned bulk. On a line that will primarily feature JUCO’s and freshman, O.G., as he is often affectionately called, will be relied on to stuff opposing backs and disrupt rushing lanes.

A JUCO transfer himself, Nwagbuo started six games for the Green and White in 2006. Out of Southwestern Community College in Iowa, Nwagbuo was a three-star recruit before he found immediate playing time with the Spartans against Idaho last season. The coaching staff hopes he can build on that experience.

Strengths
  1. Size:
    Undersized as a unit, Michigan State will rely on O.G. to provide much needed size, especially throughout the conference schedule.

  2. Athleticism:
    For a big man, Nwagbuo has some quickness. “O.G. is a big, strong inside guy that can move,” said head coach Mark Dantonio in an MSU release. Nwagbuo should bring a complete game to the field in his final season.
Questions
  1. Are the Spartans too reliant on JUCOs?
    For too long, the Spartan’s have been over-reliant on JUCOs to fill needs. While such players should be evaluated on a player-by-player basis, Dantonio has made it clear the program must move away from reliance on the JUCO quick fix. For now, Nwagbuo will work to prove conventional wisdom wrong.

  2. Can he perform at an elite level?
    Programs are built on training and conditioning players at the Big Ten level for three to four years, not one to two. Does O.G. have enough time to develop into the kind of interior lineman that allows Michigan State to compete on a week-in-week-out basis?
Projection

Expect Nwagbuo to find significant time as a starter. O.G. stepped into the role and ran with it last season, but this year expect competition from players like freshman Antonio Jeremiah and fellow JUCO transfer Michael Jordan.

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