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Thursday, July 11, 2013
Crimson Countdown: DE Chuka Ndulue

By Brandon Chatmon

During the summer months, SoonerNation will take a closer look at each player on Oklahoma’s roster in our Crimson Countdown series. Each day, we will analyze each player’s impact on the program since arriving on campus, his potential impact this fall and his long-term impact. Starting with No. 1 Kendal Thompson, the series will follow the roster numerically through our final analysis of No. 99 Chaz Nelson.

No. 98 Chuka Ndulue
Defensive line, 6-foot-3, 262 pounds, junior

Impact thus far: Ndulue has already been a significant contributor for the Sooners entering his junior season. He led the Sooners in sacks with 4.5 in 2012 as a sophomore. He hasn’t been a game-changing threat along the defensive line but he’s a solid contributor that could be part of the foundation of a strong defensive front.

Ndulue has played 19 career games with nine starts in 2012. He has 47 career tackles including seven tackles for loss and six sacks during his freshman and sophomore seasons.

Best-case scenario in 2013: Ndulue remains inside at defensive tackle and emerges as a impact player at the position. He’s a tad undersized but his quickness and good feet could be an asset that allows him to be a penetrating force for OU’s defense.

Worst-case scenario in 2013: Ndulue never gets comfortable at defensive tackle and returns to defensive end. Expect the junior to be a contributor, regardless of position, but the Sooners need help at defensive tackle more than defensive end, so Ndulue moving back outside, where OU has more depth, would be a bad development.

SoonerNation's evaluation grade for Ndulue: B. Ndulue hasn’t proven to be a star but he was an impact player as a sophomore and will be counted on to anchor OU’s defensive line in 2013. A quality evaluation by the Sooners.

SoonerNation’s development grade for Ndulue: A. OU recognized Ndulue had the talent to help early in his career and played him in certain situations as a redshirt freshman even though the Sooners had two future NFL players (Ronnell Lewis, Frank Alexander) at defensive end. That helped him be ready to start at defensive end in 2012.