September 6, 2011

Odenigbo gets first Ohio Stadium experience

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Monday afternoon gave Centerville product Ifeadi Odenigbo his first taste of Ohio Stadium as his team took on Indianapolis (Ind.) Cathedral in the closing game of the Herbstreit Football Series. The 6-foot-4, 210-pound linebacker/defensive end prospect had four tackles, including two for a loss in a losing effort as Cathedral downed the Elks 34-17.

"It was a great experience," he said. "The first two drives I was just so anxious, I had butterflies in my stomach. This was my first time down here, I've never been to an Ohio State football game."

The loss drops Centerville to 0-2 on the season and puts them in a tough spot when it comes to making the playoffs in a brutal Region 4. Odenigbo says his team is ready to face the challenge that lies ahead.

"What I take from this experience is how we respond from adversity," Odenigbo explained. "I think that's the most important thing. They gave us some different looks but we pretty much went over everything on film. One thing we need to work on as a defensive line is (defending) traps."

As Odenigbo prepared for the game against Cathedral, his family was able to take advantage of the trip to Columbus and get more familiar with Ohio State.

"My family went on a visit today to Ohio State actually," he said. "They got here around 1 PM and they got a tour with coach Heacock."

While this was Odenigbo's first time in Ohio Stadium, it won't be his last. Ohio State sits in his top five right now and is expected to get an official visit at some point.

"I'm definitely coming back," he said. "I want to come back for a big game because I definitely want to see my teammate Michael Bennett play."

Bennett was on the field supporting his former teammates on Monday and offered some advice after the loss.

"He told us that he feels like at times that when someone makes a big play, like a tackle-for-loss, we need to get pumped," Odenigbo said. "He said the field was silent and that as a team we just need to get more adrenaline going."

The talk around the Centerville program over the weekend revolved around Bennett's impressive debut where he recorded a sack in the second half. Odenigbo didn't get a chance to see the play but he certainly heard about it.

"I was watching it, then my cable went out," he said. "That's what everyone was talking about (Michael Bennett's sack). I just went on facebook and everyone was like 'Oh did you see Michael Bennett' and my coaches just talked about it all weekend like 'you need to do that Ifeadi'."

On the recruiting front, everything remains the same for Odenigbo.

"It's the same thing," he said. "My top five is Ohio State, Stanford, Notre Dame, Cal, and Northwestern."


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