|2 Star - Rivals
Speed and size can win you games in college football; UTEP won a major recruiting battle with the signing of Seymour, Wisconsin defensive end Luke Elsner.
The 6'3 240lb rush end signed with UTEP after a very productive senior year in which he recorded 14 sacks, and also had 25.5 tackles for loss.
Elsner runs the 40 yard dash in 4.8, and benches a 280 max, with a squat high of 420 according to BisoNation.
His highly productive junior season led to double teams throughout his senior year as Elsner had a monster year with 17.5 sacks during his junior year.
During his senior season he also added three forced fumbles to his stat line, with 76 overall tackles, garnering WFCS Defensive First Team, and AP All-State Honorable Mention honors.
He led his team to a 10-3 record in his final season, and showed some big game capability with 4.5 sacks in a playoff loss to end his high school career.
Air Force and Eastern Michigan were his lone division one offers, 247 Sports rates him as the 26th overall player from Wisconsin.
Sean Kugler On Luke Elsner:
"This guy has a relentless motor. All you got to do is watch this cat on film, and he is all over the place. He, just like the other guys I just mentioned is going to be a big kid before it's all said and done. He's got a big frame, long arms. He's probably going to be a 270 pounder when it's all said and done."
One stat that jumps out to me is his four blocked punts during his senior season; he also had one in his junior year. Some of the best athletes on the field make plays like that on special teams, and Elsner fits the mold of best athlete on the field when you watch his films.
With UTEP lacking a consistent pass rush that only netted 13 total sacks last season, Elsner will definitely compete for a spot on the defensive end rotation come this fall that will also be a very young rotation.
There is no question Elsner is a "high motor" guy, but what standouts on film is his closing speed off the edge while in pursuit. His speed helps him blow by slower lineman in his high school films, and shows quick, active hands when engaged in a block.
You can tell he out athletes most of his would be blockers, but will have to sharpen up his technique against better offensive lineman, otherwise I think this kid has the tools be an impact starter down the road, as well as a defensive weapon.
The strength in this 2014 recruiting class class is in both offensive and defensive lines, Luke Elsner alone solidifies the future at defensive end.