E.J. Levenberry, one of the top inside linebacker recruits in the country, will announce his college decision on Tuesday at 3 p.m. ET, according to Virginia recruiting analyst Justin Ferber. Levenberry stars for Woodbridge (VA) C.D. Hylton High School, where he transferred after playing for two years at Dematha Catholic in DC.
Levenberry has had long relationships with both Florida State and Michigan, between which he will choose Tuesday. Levenberry visited the Seminoles in early April, and recently attended the Michigan spring game. Both schools have an opportunity to play for an excellent defensive coordinator in Florida State's Mark Stoops and Michigan's Greg Mattison. This race seems too close to call, as insiders at both schools feel confident.
Levenberry has ideal size for an inside linebacker recruit at 6'3" and 227 pounds. Curiously, some services rate him as an outside linebacker. Every service rates him as one of the top 20 linebackers nationally.
I do feel that Levenberry is a bit overrated, however, because he has been a known commodity since his freshman season. There is a strong tendency to rate a kid highly when he has been a good player for a long time, and perhaps a tendency to disregard whether a player is not continuing to improve at a steady clip.
Levenberry has the power to take on blocks a the college level, and when he knows where he is going, he is able to close quite fast. I don't see quick reactions from Levenberry, however, of mind or foot. And that is a bit of a concern. I'm not saying that Levenberry is too tight or stiff to play the position, but those hyping him to be the next superstar inside linebacker are missing the mark in my estimation. He is not the next Rolando McClain or Patrick Willis.
Levenberry can be a very good run stopping piece in an excellent defense, and he should be able to control his area, provided the designated area is of limited yardage.