In the last college game of his career, Ikenna Enechukwu refused to see an opportunity to win slip away.
In the LendingTree Bowl against Conference USA opponent Southern Miss last season, Enechukwu lined up as a defensive end for Rice. Southern Miss was leading 17-3 late in the first half and was aiming to score again.
After the snap, Enechukwu ducked out of the way of a block and somehow stayed on his feet. He barreled toward the quarterback and swatted at his arm as he was about to throw, forcing a fumble and turnover.
No matter where he plays along a defensive line, Enechukwu would be disruptive at the NFL level.
Ikenna Enechukwu Stats And Highlights
Enechukwu was starting games by the time he was a redshirt freshman. By the time he was a full-time starter in 2021, he was earning all-conference awards.
Enechukwu made the All-Conference USA honorable mention list each of the past two seasons. During that span, he totaled 41 quarterback hurries, according to Pro Football Focus. That helped him earn invites to the East-West Shrine Bowl and NFL Combine.
Last season, Enechukwu recorded 37 tackles, 9.5 tackles for loss, 4.5 sacks, a forced fumble, and a fumble recovery. The year before, he racked up 48 tackles, nine for loss, with 4.5 sacks, and a forced fumble.
Ikenna Enechukwu Draft Projection
Enechukwu would be a good pick in the sixth round if he falls that far. Many believe he’ll be selected between the fifth and seventh rounds.
Ikenna Enechukwu Draft Profile
Enechukwu played mostly at defensive end in college. But at 6-foot-4, 264 pounds, he could play there or defensive tackle depending on the team he ends up with.
At the NFL Combine, Enechukwu ran a 40-yard dash in 4.7 seconds with a 1.66-second 10-yard split. He also recorded a vertical jump of 31.5 inches and a broad jump of 10 feet. That helped him earn an athleticism score of 66, which was sixth among defensive ends at this year’s combine.
So overall athleticism won’t be an issue for Enechukwu. Skill won’t be either.
Though he occasionally got locked into blocks, Enechukwu’s technique with his hands was usually exceptional. He didn’t overly rely on any one move or series of moves.
Enechukwu also did a good job of keeping his pad level low. This all helped him often remain in control at the point of attack.
And although he has the size to become an interior D-lineman, Enechukwu showed he can bend around the edge when he’s pass rushing.
For whichever NFL team he goes to, Enechukwu’s skill set provides options and flexibility, which could make him an intriguing prospect.