New England hasn’t been known as an area that has produced a ton of college football talent in the past, but that has changed recently with more and more national recruits coming to the area. Preston Zinter is another and the last from the region to commit to Notre-Dame.
Although he’s not playing against elite competition, it’s not hard to see why he’s an exciting prospect when you turn on the movie. He stands out both ways and could project himself into several positions for the Irish.
Projected position: Linebacker or Vyper
DSI class: 90 (4 stars)
National average score: 89.3 (3 stars)
What it does best:
Zinter is a physical soccer player. You see him on offense as a blocker when he’s lined up at tight end or receiver and you see him on defense with the way he plays at the point of attack. How many linebackers encounter an iso block like this from a lineman and are able to lose and make the tackle?
I really like what he showed as a passer. Here he is in second year on a three-point position after the quarterback. The initial jolt is what stands out the most.
It has a great engine. This bag only happens because of his relentless efforts.
Zinter can block. He can catch. He can run. It displays good block destruction. He is a pure football player and he is also a good athlete who can avoid a cut block and react to strike the football.
What it needs to improve:
He plays as an advantage for his high school and there are only a few instances of seeing him play with the ball. The way he moves on offense suggests he’s athletic enough to play in coverage as an inside linebacker, but he hasn’t done much with it. It’s something I’d like to see more of.
If he ends up becoming a top defender in college, he won’t have the longest levers for that spot, so playing fast, heavy hands will be a must for him consistently.
What is its ceiling?
I’m a big fan of this pickup for Notre Dame. His position may not be set, but he’s that kind of high-skill athlete whose programs want more defense.
I know they’re signing him as a linebacker but I think he might be more long term at Vyper and he kinda reminds me of Kahanu Kia, a player who impressed after moving there when he came on the campus. If Zinter can’t do it, I could see him rushing the setter there in sub-packets.
I think it will take time for him to develop physically and technically, but he has the qualities to be a quality multi-year starter for Notre Dame.
Who could it be:
My recent college football comparison would be former Minnesota edge defenseman Carter Coughlin, but my Hit and Hustle partner Greg Flammang dismissed former linebacker/passer Rocky Boiman as a Notre Dame comparison and I think that’s a good.