West Virginia Head Coach Neal Brown is off to a tremendous start in recruiting the 2021 class, landing four star in-state offensive lineman Wyatt Milum, wide receiver Andrew Wilson-Lamp, quarterback Will “Goose” Crowder, defensive end Hammond Russell, tight end Victor Wikstrom and safety Saint McLeod.
The 2021 class for the Mountaineers is currently ranked 19th in the nation and 2nd in the Big 12 Conference. In only his second year, Neal Brown has exceeded any expectations for recruiting in Morgantown.
With that said, there is one can’t-miss recruit that Neal Brown and company must land to truly solidify this outstanding class. Zeiqui Lawton, a four star defensive lineman from South Charleston High School in Charleston, West Virginia, is the type of in-state prospect that Neal Brown has really prioritized since arriving at West Virginia University.
Lawton, currently rated as the #3 ranked prospect in the state (behind Bluefield cornerback Isaiah Johnson and Wyatt Milum), has flown a bit under the radar with eleven scholarship offers from Appalachian State, Cincinnati, Eastern Kentucky, Illinois, Oregon and West Virginia, among others. West Virginia is a solid leader for his services and it would be shocking if he doesn’t end up playing for the Mountaineers.
According to 247 Sports’ Brian Dohn, Lawton has “wide shoulders with frame to play strong side defensive end. Can hold 255+ pounds. Strong and athletic. Disengages well and re-directs down line of scrimmage. Has good change of direction. Footwork is an asset. Patient and smart. Understands gap integrity. Excels when ball is run at him. Has speed to get around edge. Consistently wins pad level battle. Productive and also plays running back. Must improve technique and be able to use combination moves. Length is a question. Has to be more consistent when firing off at the snap. Hand quickness is developing. Multi-year player at Top 25 program.”
Tom Lemming, College Football Recruiting Analyst & Co-Host of the Lemming Report on CBS Sports Network, said Lawton “shows a quick get off, has good hands and great strength. After meeting him and watching his film, I’m convinced he’s one of the top defensive ends in the country.”
Zeiqui Lawton 6‘3“ 235 DE/OLB South Charleston HS, WV shows a quick get off,Good hands and great strength. After meeting him and watching his film I’m convinced he’s one of the top DE prospects in the country.4*+. @ZeiquiL 12 QB sacks and 26 tfl pic.twitter.com/guTDcWDFaB
— Tom Lemming (@LemmingReport) November 27, 2019
Not only will Lawton be a multi-year star for the Mountaineers, he has the ability to be a real leader for West Virginia. When Neal Brown took the job as the Head Coach at West Virginia, he said his top priority was keeping home the best talent in the state. He’s already landed Wyatt Milum, a potential four-year starter at left tackle, and now keeping Zeiqui Lawton becomes his most important task.
Lawton posted a message on Twitter yesterday, saying, “Top schools coming soon…” Expect to see the West Virginia Mountaineers at the top of his list. Stay home, Zeiqui!
Top schools coming soon….
— Zeiqui Lawton (@ZeiquiL) April 13, 2020