It’s no secret that Villanova’s forte has been on the defensive side of the ball. The Wildcats’ defensive unit just got even stronger on Monday morning, as Class of 2019 defensive end Jalen Howard gave his verbal commitment to play at Villanova.
Howard announced the news via Twitter.
The 6-foot-2, 240-pound Virginia native breached the Division I college football landscape back in January, when he started receiving offers of that caliber. He fielded scholarship offers from schools such as Sacred Heart, Charlotte, Towson, Buffalo, Rhode Island, Campbell, Lehigh, and St. Francis (Pa.)—before Villanova reached out with one earlier this month. Howard would make his decision a few weeks later.
Howard was a standout on defense at Woodbridge (Va.), where he helped anchor the defensive line. He also played some outside linebacker, but he truly shined in a four-point or three-point stance. This past season, he and the Vikings made it all the way to the Virginia 6A Division State Final Four, finishing with a 13-2 record.
Expect Howard to bring a physical approach to the line. He’s good a shedding his blocker and ripping through opposing offensive lines to seek out the ballcarrier. He doesn’t give up on a play and engages until the whistle. He’s chased down running backs and receivers that seemingly had a breakaway gain. Howard tackles hard and has good recognition for making the right plays.