With National Signing Day less than a week away, we're looking back at the high school careers of some of the region's top players in recent history.
Former Friendship Collegiate linebacker Yannick Ngakoue tore up the D.C. football scene during his high school years. The 6-3, 235-pound defensive end took home the Gatorade Football Player of the Year after logging a whopping 17 sacks his senior season.
The four-star recruit (Rivals.com) ultimately made the last minute decision to stay home and commit to the University of Maryland. He joined teammates Derwin Gray, Cavon Walker, and Jermaine Carter in College Park.
“My mother. . . I wanted her to see me play,” Ngakoue told the Washington Post. “And also I wanted to ball for my city, because Maryland has been the underdog for a long time, and I know if all my teammates stay, and the next class stayed, 2014, 2013 and so on, we would have a national championship team.”
Ngakoue popped off as a true freshman recording nine tackles, two sacks, and an interception while appearing in all 13 games. His junior season, though, opened the door. After setting a school record with 13.5 sacks, Ngakoue announced he would forgo his senior season and enter the 2016 NFL Draft.
The Jacksonville Jaguars selected Ngakoue in the third round with the 69th overall pick. He's currently enjoying a four-year, $3.48 million contract that was signed in June 2016 and was named a Pro Bown alternate after the 2017 season.
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