Rivals . National Recruitment Analyst Clint Cosgrove identify five Midwestern freshmen who can make an immediate impact this season, explain why Northwest could surprise in the Big Ten and list three Midwestern prospects that could rise in the rankings in today’s Three-Point Stand.
1. FIVE FRESH PEOPLE IN THE CENTRAL CAN INSTANT IMPACT
Xavier Nwankpa, Iowa – When Nwankpa comes out this fall, he will be the highest ranked player to ever play for the Hawkeyes. Iowa has lost three starting spots from last year’s second division, but there’s still talent on the roster and Nwankpa will have to fight for game time early on. Even if Nwankpa starts the season as a substitute in defence, he is sure to make an impact on particular teams, and at some point his talent will be too much to make him feel. he has to leave the field.
Luther’s burden, Missouri – The overall No. 1 player in the 2022 division made national headlines when he chose the Tigers over the defending national champion Georgia. Burden was an early entrant and made an immediate impact in the spring soccer game, which ended with an 81-yard touchdown in Missouri’s spring game. Look for “Touchdown Luther” for an immediate impact upon exiting the portal.
Dasan McCullough, Indiana – Once Ohio State commit to Bloomington as one of the most famous rookies in Indiana history. The Bloomington (Ind.) male star is getting rave reviews and has debuted in two depths when Hoosier coaching staff released the first fall depth chart. McCullough combines his elite size with a high level of athleticism and will compete for a job starting immediately.
Barion Brown, Kentucky – The ability to hit the home run is the fastest way for a freshman to be on the field regardless of whether they’re ready for college, and that’s exactly what Brown delivers. The former Tennessee 100, 200 and 400 meter track and field champion can stretch the field like few in his class and received first team representation in fall camp. Even if Brown doesn’t start the season as one of Kentucky’s main catchers, the Kentucky staff are sure to find ways to get the ball in his hands early and often.
Ernest Hausmann, Nebraska – Hausman didn’t come to campus as Nebraska’s highest-ranked recruiter in the class of 2022, but the word from Lincoln is that he made as much or as much of an impact during fall camp as any student any other real freshman. The Nebraska staff are hoping to rotate their defenders more this season, so look for Hausman to see the pitch and make an impact soon.
2. BIG TEN SURPRISE?
Northwest had a forgettable season in 2021 and as a result the Wildcats entered the 2022 season predicted to finish last in their division. Northwestern also entered the season with the Las Vegas sportsbooks setting the team’s total win at four. There were questions in midfield, attack and defense were both terrible last season and one of the show’s best defensive players in Brandon Joseph leave Notre Dame.
So why should there be hope in Evanston? It all starts with Pat Fitzgerald. In Fitzgerald’s 16 seasons as Northwestern head coach, only once has the Wildcats encountered consecutive failed seasons. The last time Northwestern finished the season 3-9, like they did in 2021, Fitzgerald and Co. followed up the season with a top 10 team, leading 7-2 and winning the Big Ten West. Having an established winning culture in Evanston, the Wildcats have a talented offensive line anchored by a future high round draft pick Peter Skoronsky come back and have some more talented newcomers on the show. I’m not saying this year’s Northwestern team will challenge for a national title or the Big Ten, but I’m willing to bet the Wildcats 2022 will exceed expectations and certainly won’t end up at the bottom of the Big Ten in 2022.
3. THREE INTERMEDIATE RISKS
The next Rivals250 leaderboard update arrived just recently. There will be plenty of movement after a summer full of camps, 7v7 tournaments and the recent fall practice review. Here are three contenders to go up in the Midwest:
first. Arvell Reese – Recently Ohio State commitment is too good to stay is 5.6 three stars. Reese has the scale and skill to be the next level difference maker and the more you watch him, the more you enjoy his game and vice versa. He’s long, athletic, can play in space, dashes passers and explodes past ball-bearers on contact. Look for Reese in the four-star chat and, even if he doesn’t add his star in this ranking release, I’d be surprised if he doesn’t complete the 2023 recruiting cycle with as a four-star potential customer.
2. Chris Terek – There are a lot of questions about how elite Terek can become as we head into this off-season and needless to say those questions have been answered. Terek has lost weight, is extremely healthy, and plays lousy football. He’s had an impressive springtime and his recruiting blows up as a result. Present Wisconsin commits to every opportunity to develop into an NFL player in the Badgers offense, and he is another player that will be on the four-star conversation.
3. Ben Minich – There’s so much to like about his game that he doesn’t get ranked up. Minich has always been a special and extremely instinctive footballer and while there is never a question of his ability to play quality football, there are questions about whether he is special. What elite makes him stand out at major universities? That question was answered when he ran the under 10.5 in the 100 meters this season, and at that rate Minich will have a chance to become a major college football player.