Robert Nkemdiche

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Robert Nkemdiche
Ole Miss Rebels No. 5
Position Defensive end
Class Junior
Career history
High school Loganville (GA) Grayson
Personal information
Date of birth (1994-09-19) September 19, 1994 (age 20)
Place of birth Atlanta, Georgia
Height 6 ft 4 in (1.93 m)
Weight 280 lb (127 kg)
Career highlights and awards
Stats at
Stats at

Robert Nkemdiche (/kɪmˈdi/ kim-DEECH-ee;[1] born September 19, 1994) is an American football defensive end. He currently attends the University of Mississippi in his sophomore year.[2] Nkemdiche was named High School Junior of the Year by,[3] and was selected to the 2011 USA Today All-American team. He has been regarded as the "Southeast's best [high school football] prospect since the early 1980s" by ESPN.[4] Nkemdiche committed to Ole Miss, making him the highest touted Rebels recruit since Eli Manning in 1999.[5]

High school career[edit]

A native of Loganville, Georgia, Nkemdiche attended Grayson High School, where he was a three-sport athlete in football, basketball and track. He played as a defensive end and running back for the Grayson Rams high school football team. In his junior season, he registered 59 tackles and 18 sacks on defense while also running for 528 yards and scoring 17 touchdowns on offense. In his senior year, he registered 59 tackles, 12 tackles for loss and 7 sacks on defense, whilst on offense he had 235 total rushing yards and 10 touchdowns. He was the Gwinnett Daily Post Defensive Player of the Year. He finished his career at Grayson with 41 career sacks. He was named first-team All-American as a junior by MaxPreps, as well as second-team as a senior.[6][7]

Nkemdiche also competed in track & field during his junior season. At the 2011 Gwinnett County T&F Championship, he earned second-place finishes in both the shot put, with a throw of 13.41 meters (43 ft, 8 in), and the discus, with a throw of 37.98 meters (124 ft, 5 in).[8] In addition, he also had marks of a 350-pound max bench press, 335-pound power clean, 500-pound squat squat and a 4.56-second 40-yard dash time.[9]


Regarded as a five-star recruit by both and, Nkemdiche was not only considered the No. 1 defensive line prospect of his class, but also the consensus No. 1 player overall.[10] He was only the fourth player since 2002 to be the consensus No. 1 prospect, along with Jadeveon Clowney, Vince Young, and Ernie Sims. Nkemdiche went wire-to-wire as the No. 1 overall player in the Top100, also the first since Clowney.

Robert and his older brother Denzel originally planned attending college together.[11] After Denzel Nkemdiche signed with Ole Miss, Robert was believed to follow. However, he instead committed to Clemson on June 14, 2012.[12] In October 2012, ESPN The Magazine reported that Nkemdiche was not firm on his non-binding verbal commitment, and was still considering other schools, including Ole Miss.[13] Consequently, Nkemdiche decommitted from Clemson in November 2012, re-considering a number of schools including Clemson, Ole Miss, Alabama, and Georgia.[14] By January 2013, he narrowed his list down to just Ole Miss and Louisiana State.[15]

Giving her opinion on their sons' college selection, Nkemdiche's mother said she would "love for them to play together, as well as have the power of two."[16] That way, she would not have to worry about going to different games—taking pressure off of her shoulders. Also, on top of the family tie to Ole Miss, Nkemdiche was said to have a close relationship with the head coach of the Ole Miss football team, Hugh Freeze.[16] In November 2012, Denzel Nkemdiche told reporters that Robert personally told him that he was going to commit to Ole Miss.[17] Robert Nkemdiche indeed committed to Ole Miss on National Signing Day.[5]


Nkemdiche was born in Atlanta, Georgia to Nigerian immigrants Beverly and Sunday Nkemdiche. His father, a cardiologist, has reportedly applied for a researcher position at University of Mississippi Medical Center in Jackson, Mississippi.[18] Nkemdiche's mother, a politician, returned to Nigeria in 2009 and as of September 2011 represents Onitsha South in the Anambra State House of Assembly.[19] His older brother Denzel Nkemdiche plays linebacker for Ole Miss.[20]


  1. ^ Mahoney, Jon. (August 15, 2011) Get Familiar: Robert Nkemdiche – ESPNHS Football – ESPNHS. Retrieved on 2012-09-04.
  2. ^ "Ole Miss Rebels Class 2013 Roster". Recruiting Nation Football. ESPN. Retrieved 21 July 2013. 
  3. ^ Niebuhr, Keith (January 30, 2012). "Junior of the Year: Robert Nkemdiche". 
  4. ^ Schlabach, Mark (February 3, 2012). "Prep prospect draws star comparisons". 
  5. ^ a b "Robert Nkemdiche commits to Mississippi Rebears on national signing day". February 6, 2013. 
  6. ^ Stephen Spiewak (2013-01-09). "2012 All-American Football Team". MaxPreps. Retrieved 2013-07-22. 
  7. ^ Stephen Spiewak (2012-01-03). "2011 U.S. Air Force Junior All-American Football Teams". MaxPreps. Retrieved 2013-07-22. 
  8. ^
  9. ^
  10. ^ Robert Nkemdiche: Consensus No. 1 from start to finish
  11. ^ Towers, Chip (November 23, 2010). "Ten@10: Justin Scott-Wesley’s commitment to UGA shaky". Atlanta Journal Constitution. After Grayson knocked off No. 2-ranked North Gwinnett 23–19 this past Friday, the Nkemdiche brothers made it clear it is their intention to play together in college. ‘Oh, yeah, we’re going together,’ said Denzel, with Robert standing beside him. ‘Yes, sir, it’s a done deal.’ 
  12. ^ Fischer, Bryan (June 14, 2012). "Nation's top recruit Robert Nkemdiche commits to Clemson". CBS Sports. 
  13. ^ Robert Nkemdiche torn between families
  14. ^ "Robert Nkemdiche says decision to decommit from Clemson Tigers his own - ESPN". 2012-11-13. Retrieved 2013-07-22. 
  15. ^ Robert Nkemdiche: Ole Miss still leads for nation’s undisputed No. 1 prospect
  16. ^ a b "The Nkemdiche Watch". Saturday Down South. 2013-01-15. Retrieved 2013-07-22. 
  17. ^ Ole Miss nabbing #1 recruit Nkemdiche would be icing on the cake
  18. ^ Robert Nkemdiche, nation's top recruit, riles up Mississippi Legislature : Outkick The Coverage
  19. ^ Sherman, Mitch (September 20, 2011). "Definitely worth watching". 
  20. ^ Denzel Nkemdiche Profile – OLEMISSSPORTS.COM – OLE MISS Official Athletic Site. Olemisssports.Com. Retrieved on 2012-09-04.

External links[edit]