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NFL Draft: Scouting Report for Great Ibe

EMU may not have had much to brag about on defense, but they've still had someone great playing for them.

Andrew Mascharka (The Eastern Echo)

The first word that comes to mind when you think about Eastern Michigan defense usually isn't "great", unless of course you're talking about this linebacker. Bad puns aside, Ibe has been a legitimate playmaker for the Eagles defense and is always finding himself in the right place at the right time.

Ibe was a guest on's podcast to talk about his life as a football player and preparing for the draft. He mentioned a piece of advice given by one of his former coaches that he would cling to and pretty much summed up the way he played the game as an Eagle:

"...something I really wanted to focus on is always that great effort to the ball. (A coach from his younger days) pulled me aside when I was young and he told me to 'measure your value by how close you are at the end of the play'. So I always wanted to be in the picture, I always wanted to have my hand on the ball, my arm around the ball carrier, something... Hopefully when scouts watch my film, they see that I'm always around the ball, I'm always excited to play the game, and I want to make an impact on every play."

In three years as an Eagle led his team in tackles twice with a career total of 326, 32.5 for loss, with a few forced fumbles, sacks and pass break-ups sprinkled in the mix. He was recognized as one of the MAC's finest players with All-MAC selections his last two seasons, even earning weekly national honors after a 21-tackle performance against Massachusetts at home in mid-November.

Would've been nice if it were televised, because curious fans would've been able to see Ibe take care of business in the inaugural Tropic Bowl. Practicing and playing in front of scouts in Miami, Florida, Ibe had six tackles (two for loss) with a forced fumble to be the game's defensive MVP.

His stature measures at 6-foot in height, hovering over 230 pounds. In his pro day, Ibe's 40-time was 4.76 seconds and had 24 reps on the bench press, which would've been good for third-best at the NFL Scouting Combine.

EMU has had some of their top talents on the defensive side of the ball land jobs in the NFL. Andy Mulumba had a chance with Green Bay and recently got a second chance in the league with Kansas City. Kalonji Kashama was able to try out with Detroit before having a gig in the CFL. Jason Jones was an All-American, drafted in the second round of the 2008 NFL Draft and, while he's currently a free agent, has still been able to have an 8-year career in the NFL with three different teams.

All things considered, Ibe should be a legitimate prospect for NFL teams to take an honest look at. Racking up multiple 130+ tackle seasons isn't as glorious when you're playing for EMU instead of a P5 school, but he's obviously far from unproductive. If he's selected in the draft, even if he's a late-rounder, it'll be because he's impressed teams in individual workouts and teams wouldn't want to go up against him in potential years to come with his high ceiling.

Worse case scenario: the linebacker will be one of the many players that sign as an undrafted free agent and is attending rookie mini-camps for somebody. He's in one of those situations where it wouldn't be surprising if he did get drafted and wouldn't be surprising if he didn't.