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May 17, 2014

Detroit linebacker is Broncos' 12th commitment

Western Michigan picked up their 12th commitment to the 2015 class early Saturday morning, May 17. The verbal came from Loyola H.S. (Detroit, Mich.) linebacker Paul Engram. Engram borders on a high two-star recruit.

P.J. Fleck managed to flip Engram away from his Toledo verbal commitment -- a pledge he gave on April 5 -- and helps bolster the defensive side of the football. He seems to recognize plays well and has an explosive first step. Though he's listed at 6-foot and 230 pounds, he is actually much closer to about 200 pounds. His 5.3 Rivals Rating puts him on the edge of a high two- or low-three star recruit.

One play that really sticks out to me on his highlight package occurs at the 45-second mark. Engram drops into coverage during a pass play as the opposing running back heads out for a pass. He recognizes that the quarterback rolls out to his right and holds the football as all passing options are covered. This is where Engram impresses. He explodes and seemingly reaches top speed within a couple of steps, taking a straight-line path to the quarterback. Before anyone on the offense realizes what happens he is in the backfield wrapping up the quarterback.

Engram looks to possess enough speed to move to safety or play a rover position -- evidenced by the fact that his high school team puts him in the backfield often -- but he will be a very athletic linebacker in Kalamazoo. He does fit in with the majority of linebackers at Western, though. Six of the nine Broncos' linebackers check in at 5-foot-11 or smaller and two are listed at lighter than 210 pounds. Engram can put on weight to what looks to be a stocky build with a consistent weight training program once he hits the WMU facilities.

In addition to Toledo, Engram held an offer from Eastern Illinois and has received interest from Michigan State, Indiana, Ball State and Cincinnati. Engram is the third verbal commitment in the month of May for Coach Fleck and his staff.

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