Private high schools may not get as much attention as their public counterparts in the state of Texas but it is hard to ignore Irving Cistercian lineman Ikenna Nwafor. The big 6-foot-5, 298-pound junior is a standout on both offense and defense for the Hawks.
Nwafor has been busy this semester, working out at the Next Level Athletics Texas Top 100 Camp as well as taking in several college visits. He has made recent junior day trips to three in-state programs and has others planned.
"I've been hearing from a lot of schools lately," Nwafor said. "I've been to a few schools already too. I've been to Texas A&M, Baylor and UNT. I'm also going to Texas Tech later this spring. I'm probably going to go to Stanford and Duke over the summer."
Nwafor says he saw a lot to like at all three places.
"All three of them, they were good," he said. "I really enjoyed all of them. It gave me a different perspective on what the colleges have to offer.
"At A&M I really liked the sense of community and how all the coaches stressed football, family and faith. Those are things that I value as well. Baylor, they have a very strong science program which is what I've thought about doing. UNT, I liked the visit. It's only an hour away and they built a new stadium. I like the direction the new coaching staff is taking them in."
Though he has not yet received his first offer, Nwafor feels a Big 12 program could be the first to extend one.
"It really seems like Texas Tech is (close to offering)," he said. "I'll be at their junior day at Coppell High School that they're having down here in March. I'm also going up to Lubbock for a junior day in April."
Though Nwafor plays on both sides of the line, he definitely has a preference for the next level. However, different schools see him at different places.
"I play both ways at my school," he said. "Most want me as a DT but some schools are looking at me as an offensive lineman. I guess each school is recruiting me for whatever they need when they recruit. I like defensive tackle more but I'm open to either one."
As far as colleges, the big lineman says he has no favorites at the moment.
"Not really," Nwafor said. "They're all pretty much even right now. I want a chance to see as many places as possible."