Much of this offseason secondary talk has been devoted to Iowa football players Geno Stone and Matt Hankins, but don’t forget about Michael Ojemudia.
Iowa football player Michael Ojemudia is the veteran of Phil Parker’s secondary, but you don’t hear much about him. Most of our talk this offseason has been either about how Geno Stone is ready to be a star or Matt Hankins is going to break out in a big way, but mum has been the word on the senior Ojemudia.
It shouldn’t be though.
The Michigan native is a guy to watch out for in 2019. After playing in a reserve and a spot-starter role for his redshirt freshman and sophomore years, Ojemudia entered last season as a full-time starter. Despite playing well in a few games, he lost his job halfway through the season before regaining it towards the end.
In 2019, he may be the starting corner or he may even take over the space left by Amani Hooker in the 4-2-5 cash role. Either way, Iowa football fans should be excited about seeing the veteran Ojemudia on the field because analytics say he is one of the best cover guys in the Big Ten.
Out of the returning Big Ten cornerbacks, Ojemudia ranked 5th in snaps per reception with 14.7.
And when looking at quarterback passer rating, he looked even better, coming in 4th overall out of Big Ten returning cornerbacks.
While these numbers aren’t everything, they give some insight into what Ojemudia could do given a full season worth of starting.
Personally, I would love to see him in the cash role with Julius Brents taking over the other corner spot opposite of Hankins. Coming out of high school, Ojemudia’s experience was at the linebacker spot. He’s got good size (6’1” and 200 pounds) to potentially play closer to the box in a cash role and help in the run game while also being effective in covering slot receivers.
Despite a few losses, this year’s 2019 Iowa football defense could be special and getting the three most talented corners on the field will go a long way in making that happen.