The Wolfpacker

March 2012

The Wolfpacker: An Independent Magazine Covering NC State Sports

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 36 of 95

2012 FOOTBALL RECRUITING ISSUE JOHN TU'UTA KENDERIUS WHITEHEAD Measurables: Runs the 40-yard dash in 4.6 seconds, bench presses 355 pounds and has a 29-inch vertical leap. Honors/accomplishments: Rated by as a three-star pros- Lithonia, Ga./Martin Luther King High • 6-4 • 220 Pounds Defensive End pect, the No. 25 weakside defensive end in the country and the No. 27 player in Georgia … Considered a four-star recruit, the No. 31 defensive end in the nation and No. 29 player in his state by ESPN … Regarded as a four-star recruit by Tom Lemming … Also listed at four stars by 247Sports, which has him as the No. 23 weakside defensive end nationally and No. 27 recruit in the Peach State … Rated the No. 34 prospect in Georgia by SuperPrep and No. 31 by ACC Area Sports Journal … Ranked by as the No. 45 de- fensive end in the country and a three-star recruit … Played in the Semper Fidelis All-American Bowl in Phoenix Jan. 4 where he started at linebacker and notched six tackles … Voted first-team all-state in Class AAAAA by the Georgia Sports Writers Association. Stats: As a senior, posted 103 tackles, 68 of them solo, 16 sacks and a forced fumble, while helping King go 12-1 and reach the quarterfinals of the state playoffs in Class AAAAA. Off the field: Played his first three years at Monroe (Ga.) Area High before transferring to Martin Luther King Fredericksburg, Va./Fork Union (Va.) Military Academy • 6-3 • 310 Pounds Offensive Lineman got a high ankle sprain about four games in, but played the rest of the season with it. He's a tough kid. He's a throwback. He's a kid that goes back to the olden days where you play." — Fork Union head coach Micky Snyder. Recruitment: Tu'uta flew under the radar until … A company commander in charge of all post- graduates at Fork Union … Father Sione Tu'uta was a professional rugby player in Tonga. Quotable: "He had a very, very solid year. He player by … Listed at two stars, the No. 22 center in the country and the No. 39 prospect in Virginia by ESPN … Ranked as the No. 31 recruit in the state by SuperPrep … Picked by 247Sports as a two-star prospect, the 24th-best center in the country and the No. 50 player in Virginia … Ranked as a two-star recruit by … Selected Virginia Independent Schools Division I first-team All-State as a junior and senior … Named first-team All-Central Virginia by the Daily Progress … Selected first team All-Prep League as a junior and senior. Off the field: Competes in track in the shot put Honors/accomplishments: Rated a two-star for his senior season. Quotable: "This is a very talented player who does a lot of things well. His speed is the first thing you notice about his game. With a blistering first step, he consistently creates problems for offensive tackles, who are practi- cally defenseless if they can't get a punch on him. He is also stronger than you'd think." — Southeast recruiting analyst Keith Niebuhr. Recruitment: Whitehead's decision to commit to NC State surprised a lot of observers, many of whom had pegged him for either Clemson or Georgia. NC State was a long shot before hosting Whitehead on an official visit the weekend of Nov. 19. A return trip for an unofficial visit Jan. 7 with his mother sealed the deal, and he committed to State Jan. 18. Georgia continued to recruit Whitehead, but he remained firm with the Pack through signing day. Recruiter of record: Defensive backs coach Mike Reed. Scouting report: Whitehead is an explosive pass rusher. He's a good athlete that's a tough matchup for of- fensive tackles because of his speed, quickness and length. He will need to get stronger, but Whitehead's ceiling is very high. 2012 projection: Some believe that Whitehead is the top recruit in NCSU's 2012 class. With his pass-rushing skills off the edge, he may be hard to keep off the field despite the fact that State has a fairly good amount of depth returning at defensive end. JOE WRIGHT Measurables: Ran the 40-yard dash in 4.8 seconds at NC State's sum- mer camp and had a 32-inch vertical leap. Honors/accomplishments: Rated as a two-star recruit by Greenville, N.C./Rose High • 6-6 • 230 Pounds Defensive End … Considered a three-star prospect, the No. 133 defensive end nationally and the No. 45 player in North Carolina by ESPN … Listed as a two-star prospect by and 247Sports, the latter of which also rated him the No. 81 weakside defensive end in the country and No. 45 player from the state. Stats: In eight games as a senior had 35 tackles, a pair of sacks and two ing qualities about him. He's a proven leader in a military setting, which should go well with Tom O'Brien's program. Tu'uta is also tough, and he's versatile. He could play either guard or center in college. 2012 projection: Tu'uta is a good bet to red- shirt given NC State's returning depth up front. Keith Willis. Scouting report: Tu'uta has three endear- his commitment to NC State. He was offered by the Pack in the fall, and after an unofficial visit Nov. 5 for the State's win over UNC, decided that Ra- leigh would be his future home. He committed 10 days later. Prior to NC State, he had an offer from Akron. He was recruited by State to play either center or guard. Tu'uta has experience playing both positions at Fork Union. Recruiter of record: Defensive line coach fumble recoveries, helping Rose go 5-6 … As a junior, in limited action in four games at defensive end, had 10 tackles and two sacks. Off the field: Also plays basketball and throws shot put and discus in track … Brother Dante played college football at North Carolina A&T. Quotable: "Wright is a prospect who could land at a few different spots in the trenches depending on his physical development. A defensive end, he could potentially see a move to offensive tackle, but would have to add serious bulk." — ESPN. Recruitment: Wright was a revelation at NC State's summer camp in June. He played mostly offensive tackle as a junior, but quickly passed the eyeball test at defensive end. Standing at an imposing 6-6, 230 pounds, Wright showed off advanced athleticism for his size and raw potential. NC State offered him about a month after camp, and he committed July 30. East Carolina offered after his pledge, and Wake Forest maintained some interest throughout the recruiting process, but Wright never wavered on his commitment. Recruiter of record: Defensive line coach Keith Willis. Scouting report: Wright is raw and relatively inexperienced at defensive end, but he has physical tools you cannot teach. He has an imposing build, but his frame should support more weight and strength without sacrificing any of his athleticism. His primary need is to get coached up as a defensive end. 2012 projection: Given the combination of who NC State has coming back at defensive end and other recruits signed at that position in the 2012 class, Wright is an ideal candidate to redshirt this fall and continue developing his game. MARCH 2012 ■ 37

Articles in this issue

Links on this page

Archives of this issue

view archives of The Wolfpacker - March 2012