Oghoufo's camp tour nets offers from UM, MSU, others

David Goricki
The Detroit News
Ovie Oghoufo

Ovie Oghoufo just completed a busy month of camps to gain a great deal of exposure heading into his junior year at Farmington Hills Harrison.

And Oghoufo turned some heads with his impressive showings, starting with the Sound Mind Sound Body Academy in early June. He then went to one-day camps at Penn State, Syracuse, Boston College, Maryland and Notre Dame on the “Rising Stars” bus tour, which consisted of 80 players on two buses.

Oghoufo — a 6-foot-3, 208-pound outside linebacker — received big-time offers from Michigan State, Michigan and Notre Dame on consecutive days last week.

It’s not that Oghoufo, 16, wasn’t already on some coaches’ radar. He had offers from multiple Mid-American Conference schools, including Western Michigan, Central Michigan, Northern Illinois, Bowling Green and Eastern Michigan, following a strong sophomore season where he had 66 tackles (19 for loss yardage), eight sacks and three forced fumbles.

“It’s been a busy month, a lot of fun,” said Oghoufo, who has a 3.3 GPA. “You get the chance to compete in front of coaches and it’s a learning experience to see how coaches are coaching you while also at the same time seeing if that’s people you want to be coached by in college.

“It started out at Sound Mind Sound Body back on the 9th and 10th. Then we went on a tour bus with 80 kids for eight days...and also had stops for visits at Harvard, Morgan State and Kent State. We stayed on campus at Harvard, took a tour, got the feel of the tradition and saw the stadium, which had an old feel to it.”

Oghoufo picked up offers from Syracuse, Boston College, Morgan State and Notre Dame during the tour, saying the offer from Notre Dame last Friday was “a surreal moment, just crazy.”

He said his highlight was getting offers from Michigan State, Michigan and the Irish on consecutive days.

“Coach (Mark) Dantonio called Wednesday, said he liked the way I performed at Sound Mind Sound Body and wanted to offer me,” said Oghoufo, who now has 17 offers with the latest coming from Cincinnati on Monday. “Then less than 24 hours later, I got a call from Coach (Greg) Mattison at Michigan, saying he liked my athleticism and length and wanted to offer me. That was special since it’s one of the schools I’ve been looking at. I have connections at Michigan since my cousin Mario Ojemudia played there.

“On Friday, I got an offer from Notre Dame right after finishing camp there. I took a tour on campus after that. They want you to succeed on the field and in the classroom, give you the support to be successful, which I’m looking for. I have a teammate, Khalid Kareem at Notre Dame right now and he said they support him in every decision he makes, which is important.”

Oghoufo felt confident he would get major offers with all the hard work he has put in during the past couple of years.

“I thought one day I could get offers like this, but from Michigan State, Michigan and Notre Dame during the same week? That’s pretty crazy, definitely a great position to be in,” he said. “I’m going to take my time with this process. I don’t want to make a decision right now, but you also don’t want to wait too long and have schools fill those spots with other guys.

“I have a pretty good idea of what I’m looking for and that’s getting support for academics, athletics and conditioning while also getting that team bonding feel to it.”

Oghoufo reached his goals of receiving multiple offers during the camp season and now will continue his workouts so he can reach his goals for this fall at Harrison.

He has put on nearly 15 pounds since last year and is now benching 255 pounds, up from 225.

“I want to help my team win the state championship, make all-state and improve on my stats from a year ago,” Oghoufo said.

Taking the tour

While Oghoufo displayed his ability during multiple camps, U-D Jesuit quarterback/safety Scott Nelson was making multiple visits last week and checking out the colleges who have offered, including Northwestern and Wisconsin.

Nelson listed his final five to Iowa, Michigan State, Northwestern, Penn State and Wisconsin, in no particular order. He is listed as the No. 4 ranked safety in the Midwest by Rivals.com.

Nelson, who will be a senior this fall, took a visit to Northwestern a week ago with incoming freshman Cameron Kolwich, an offensive lineman from Orchard Lake St. Mary’s.

“We had a lot of fun hanging around with other recruits, playing basketball,” said Nelson of his trip to Northwestern.

He then drove to Wisconsin last Tuesday before traveling to Iowa on Saturday. Nelson plans to visit Michigan State and Penn State later in the summer.

Nelson played a big role in Jesuit’s state championship run in basketball this winter, receiving his ring earlier this spring. His teammate, 6-9 post player Ike Eke, recently committed to Marquette.

Nelson said Michigan State is still in the mix, but Michigan is no longer in the conversation.

“Michigan State’s been great in this process with me, communicating with me, telling what they want from me,” said Nelson. “Obviously, they’re a great program and Coach Dantonio has a competitive spirit and is always thinking ahead.”

So, why not Michigan?

“I lost a lot of contact with Michigan, haven’t heard from them so I don’t know if they found other players,” he said. “It was just a decision I had to make.”


Twitter: @DavidGoricki