Hometown: Chesapeake, Virginia
High School: Oscar Smith High School
Notes: When it comes to making plays and impacting a game, few do it better on the prep level than Chesapeake (VA) Oscar Smith standout Jerrod Askew.
Regarded as one of the top players in the state of Virginia, Askew had a big-time junior season, as he totaled 120 tackles, 24 tackles for a loss, 14 sacks, and two interceptions. For his efforts, he was named all-district and to the All-Tidewater team as he helped lead Oscar Smith to a 13-1 record.
However, that lone loss came in the semifinals of the Virginia AAA Division state playoffs. On a team that featured seniors Todd Harrelson (UNC) and Kerry Boykins (Maryland), most expected Oscar Smith to steamroll Chantilly (VA) Westfield. Westfield was led by NC State quarterback Mike Glennon, who made big plays down the stretch for his team and impressed Askew with his game.
"We were real close to winning a state title," said Askew. "We lost right before the championship game 24-21 to Westfield. Their best guy was Mike Glennon, he's going to NC State... he was a real good quarterback.
"He's one of the best quarterbacks I've ever played against. We really tried to get after him with our defense, but it was like he saw everything coming at him and could really see the field. It's tough to lose, but we were playing against a team that was as good as us."
Askew now turns his attention to his college recruitment and senior season. Recently he picked up a couple more offers as he closes in on double-figure offers.
"Recruiting is going great," Askew stated. "I just picked up two more offers from Illinois and South Carolina. Now I have them from Virginia Tech, NC State, West Virginia, Oklahoma, Maryland, Clemson, Tennessee, Illinois, and South Carolina."
He's attended Junior Day at Maryland and was a visitor for West Virginia's Sring Game.
"I liked Maryland's facilities," said Askew. "The coaches were great and the players were excellent. We talked to them about how the school is and what it was like playing there.
"West Virginia was awesome. The fans were crazy... they love football down there. It was a nice place. I really thought it was going to be in the middle of nowhere but it was nice to be there in the mountains."
Askew secured his first offer last fall from the NC State Wolfpack. The Wolfpack has consistently been mentioned among his leaders, but it appears they could be slipping due to state-specific academic requirements needed to enroll at NC State.
"NC State was the first school to offer me a scholarship," he stated. "My head coach told me about it last year and it shocked me. It was really big, and they've always been one of my to schools.
"The thing is they haven't been on me as much right now though because of my [foreign language courses]. I haven't taken a Spanish yet, and I've got to have two of them to go there so I don't know about that. If I can take two next year I'm going to, but if not I'll have to replace them with another school."
Hesitant to name a leader, or even a top five, Askew has a couple of camps in mind and is looking to make a decision late in the process.
"I'll probably try and camp at Clemson, Tennessee, and Maryland," he said. "Those are the ones I want to camp at and I'm going to get out and see some more colleges.
"I'm wide open. I don't even want to say a top five right now because I like everybody. I'm going to try and narrow it down later on... probably after the summer."
At 6-foot and 230 pounds, Askew has the size and speed to play any of the linebacker positions but likely projects best as an outside linebacker. He flies around the football field and is extremely tough against the run.
Askew is currently unrated by Scout.com.
Scouting Report: "The state of Virginia seems to produce top notch linebackers every year and the class of 2009 will be no different. Jerod Askew is one of the top ‘backers we've watched on film this year. Somewhat undersized, Askew's style is reminiscent of former Wolfpack linebacker Stephen Tulloch.
"The rising senior plays with a high-octane motor and has the ability to cover huge chunks of yardage quickly. Although he is extremely aggressive, Askew is able to rely on his instincts and physical ability to prevent from getting out of position. He has the ability to diagnose plays quickly and without hesitation and then explode to the ball-carrier in the blink of an eye. Askew shows no fear of contact and is capable of making plays in the backfield or out in pass coverage.
"As he continues to mature and develop physically, there's little doubt that Askew has the potential to emerge as a big-time college linebacker down the road." - Pack Pride Recruiting Analyst Steve Williams
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