The third player on my list is true freshman Steven Parker.
Parker was a four star recruit, per 247 Sports, and played high school football at South Oak Cliff in Dallas, Texas.
He held a huge list of impressive offers outside of Kansas, but most notably Nebraska, Texas Tech, Arkansas, Baylor, Iowa, Colorado, Purdue, TCU and UCLA.
This was a HUGE get for the Kansas football team as they flipped Parker from Texas Tech to Kansas, and did it in such a short time span. The man they have to thank for this commit is none other than Emmett Jones, who is currently the Jayhawks WR coach but was previously at Texas Tech.
Parker is easily the most talented true freshman on the Kansas football 2019 commitment list. He’s big at 6-4 and 225 pounds, fast and very versatile in his position.
When Parker first got to Kansas it was thought he’d play the DE position. But with the lack of depth at LB it looks like he’ll play a hybrid position called the JACK. This will allow him to play LB and DE depending on what the defense is calling for and what the offense is showing.
This is an important position because it brings in a guy that can either rush the QB and create pressure, or he can drop back and play in coverage like a LB. This is a great fit for Parker because he can do both, and he can do them very well.
But Parker won’t just be a guy who shows out on the field, he’s going to be a key piece when it comes to the leadership of the team. It’s been said that he’s one of the more vocal players during workouts and has that leadership mentality. That’s impressive considering Parker is only a freshman.
Currently Parker is listed as the backup to Azur Kamara at the JACK position, but that’s expected with Kamara being the senior. I still expect Parker to get plenty of playing time and to really make his mark in his first year.
If I were to guess at what Parker’s stats will look like I’m guessing he’ll have around 15 tackles and a few sacks. It may not sound like a lot but it’ll be enough to make his mark, especially as a true freshman.
For more on Parker, check out Scott Chasen’s article on 247 Sports.