Scouting the MAC: Northern Illinois & Ohio

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Tony Pauline

Draft Analyst Writer

Northern Illinois

Surprisingly NIU does not have a whole lot that excites scouts for next April’s draft or the following year.

Albert Smalls is a decent-sized corner who flashes skill and shows a good degree of effectiveness covering the pass or stopping the run. I presently grade the junior as a free agent but could envision a move up draft boards if he steps up his game.

Senior safety Mycial Allen is not great in any aspect but shows a degree of consistency on the field and plays with a special-teams mentality.

Junior Max Scharping offers size and growth potential at offensive right tackle.

Running back Jordan Huff, a senior, would benefit from a big year. He has good size at 200 pounds, runs well for a big man and flashes skill on the interior or around tackle. Huff will be NIU's feature back in 2017, and a productive campaign will go a long way in helping his draft stock.


Ohio had two defensive players selected in April, and  another defensive player is the program’s only hope to be chosen during next year's draft.

Quentin Poling is vertically challenged, measuring under 6-foot-1, but he’s a terrific linebacker with a great head for the game. Poling is best defending the run and plays lights out from the snap of the ball. His ability in zone coverage is not all that bad and I like him as a late-round prospect to back-up on the inside of a 3-4 as well as line up on coverage units.