Talent alone doesn't define Ebenezer Ogundeko.
Sure, the defensive end from Brooklyn (N.Y.) Thomas Jefferson has plenty of skill but what sets him apart is his dedication to his craft.
“He's not raw,” Ogundeko’s position coach, Amaree Jenkins, said. “He's very technical. At that age, his technique is far advanced over anybody I've seen.”
Jenkins has taken an active role in that development and it’s shown. Ogundeko was recently selected to participate in the Under Armour All-America Game in January.
“We've been working every single day for the past two years,” Jenkins said. “Hands and feet. Hands and feet. Don't just bull rush every time. That's what separates him from other kids.”
Ogundeko listens intently. That’s apparent from his 29 scholarship offers.
“I’m a quick learner in everything,” he said.
Fortunately for Ogundeko, he has the ability to dominate when technique can’t complete the job of beating the offensive lineman in front of him.
He has bench pressed 365, squats 540 and has posted a 4.7-second time in the 40-yard dash. Ogundeko said he plans to pare down his long list of scholarships soon. He said he’d like to announce a top 10 in the near future. Ogundeko told ESPN that Notre Dame, Syracuse, Connecticut and Alabama will definitely be in that grouping. He’s set to visit South Bend to evaluate the Fighting Irish on June 29.
For now though, Ogundeko is still beaming from his invite to the Under Armour All-America Game. He’s seen other players stand out, such are receivers A.J. Green and Julio Jones along with defensive end Jadeveon Clowney.
Ogundeko hopes to be the next to take center stage.