The Wolverine

March 2020 Issue

The Wolverine: Covering University of Michigan Football and Sports

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Page 39 of 99

2020 FOOTBALL RECRUITING ISSUE BY AUSTIN FOX Football runs in the family of Ol- ney (Md.) Our Lady of Good Coun- sel three-star defensive lineman Kris Jenkins, with his father (also Kris) having played in the NFL from 2001- 10 and earning four trips to the Pro Bowl during that span. The elder Jen- kins racked up 24 sacks during his pro career, then saw his son terrorize opposing quarterbacks in a similar fashion as a high school senior, com- piling 40 tackles, 19 stops behind the line of scrimmage and 15 sacks. "Kris is such a dynamic player and is very well-rounded, because he's great against the run and provides a fantastic pass rush," Our Lady of Good Counsel head coach Andy Ste- fanelli explained. "He is also versa- tile, so he would play with his hand in the dirt as a defensive tackle for us at times. He played as a tradi- tional defensive end most of the time where we could either stand him up or put him down. "Kris is just so naturally strong, so he can take on big offensive tackles while also having the ability to run down quarterbacks or running backs trying to get to the edge. He has a knack for being around the football, and picks up strategy and technique very quickly." Josh Uche wreaked havoc for the Wolverines as a senior from a hybrid defensive end/linebacker role in defensive coordinator Don Brown's system this past season, leading the club in sacks with 8.5 and checking in second with 11.5 tackles for loss. Uche and Jenkins have nearly identical builds, with the former checking in at 6-2, 250 this past sea- son, and the latter at 6-4, 239 coming into college — which means if Jen- kins continues to grow he may need to become a different type of hybrid defender. "The Michigan coaches told me they see me as a defensive end/ outside linebacker hybrid with the weight I'm at now," Jenkins noted. "As soon as I get to U-M, they want to bulk me up at least 20 pounds be- fore the season starts to turn me into a defensive end/defensive tackle hybrid. "If more of my dad's genes start to develop in me, they said they see me as an inner defensive tackle, but it all depends on my weight. I played enough on the inside in high school in our five-man fronts to be familiar with it. I really don't care where I play, as long as I'm on the field. Coach Brown told me I remind him of Josh Uche, and I'm going to work my butt off to be like him." "I think Kris will thrive in Michi- gan's defense, especially as he con- tinues to get bigger and stronger," Stefanelli added. "He hasn't even scratched the surface of the kind of player he can be. Don Brown will have a lot of fun moving him around and putting him in different places to wreak havoc on offenses." Kris Jenkins Is Ready To Follow In His Pro Bowl Father's Footsteps Jenkins' father, also named Kris, was a Ypsilanti, Mich., native that went on to earn All-Pro and Pro Bowl honors during a 10-year career as a defensive tackle for the New York Jets and Carolina Panthers. PHOTO BY EJ HOLLAND 40 THE WOLVERINE MARCH 2020

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