After signing four wide receivers a year ago, including three ranked in the ESPN 300, the position wasn’t a priority for Auburn in its 2017 class.
The staff addressed other needs like linebacker and only signed two wide receivers, Noah Igbinoghene and JaTarvious Whitlow. Neither was ranked in the ESPN 300. One didn’t have an offer until signing day. And the other has a name that Auburn coach Gus Malzahn doesn’t even know how to pronounce.
“I’m just going to start calling him ‘Iggy,’” Malzahn said on signing day.
Well, “Iggy” might not be headlining the class like fellow wide receivers Nate Craig-Myers and Kyle Davis did the year before, but he’s also not a name to overlook. The in-state product is likely the fastest player in the class and he might even challenge Javaris Davis as the fastest player on the team. He played running back and wide receiver for his high school team and finished with over 1,700 all-purpose yards and 18 touchdowns as a senior.
“A dynamic guy,” Malzahn said. “We think he’s got unbelievable upside. He’s extremely fast. Both his parents actually ran track in the Olympics. And he’s a young guy, too, as far as age goes. We really think his upside is really big.”
For further proof of Igbinoghene’s speed and athleticism, just watch him at one of his high school track events this spring. He recently won a gold medal in both the triple jump and long jump, and he broke the state record -- held by him from the year before -- in both events. The 5-foot-11, 190-pound athlete also plans to run track while at Auburn.
As for football, it’s unclear how Igbinoghene will fit into the wide receiver rotation, but Malzahn always seems to find a spot for guys who are fast and can jump. His guy "Iggy" can do both.