West Virginia defensive coordinator Jordan Lesley offered a lot of praise for Lee Kpogba, a transfer from East Mississippi Community College, that figures to be one of the leaders on the defense this season as the team’s Mike linebacker.
”I think it took Lee about a day to when people go ‘that’s probably a guy that can step in and people will listen to’,” said Lesley. “He talks, people listen and that’s important.”
Kpogba spent two seasons at Syracuse prior to his year at EMCC. Echoing similar praise that the cornerbacks elucidated from head coach Neal Brown, Kpogba’s experience prior to West Virginia has been viewed as an asset to the team.
The intangibles, Lesley said, are important for the position that Kpogba is slated to play. He is listed to start as the team’s MIKE linebacker, which Lesley said is the defense’s quarterback.
“They’re the physical leader, they’re the emotional leader… If you single out one guy as the quarterback, it’s the MIKE linebacker,” said Lesley.
Kpogba has played in 32 total games, 22 of which were with Power-Five Syracuse. He equally split those games as a special teams player (11 games – true freshman season) and a backup linebacker (11 games – sophomore season).
He had two tackles for loss and a sack on 48 tackles in his sophomore season at Syracuse as the team’s back-up linebacker.
Yesterday, Neal Brown offered praise for the stops that Kpogba has took on his way to getting here in his own presser.
“He got here through a winding path, no silver spoon and he’s so so appreciative of the opportunity to go out there and practice,” said Brown. “You can coach the kid, he takes coaching.”
He starred at EMCC being named to 2021 NJCAA All-Region 23 with a team-high 43 tackles. The rest of his numbers include 34 solo tackles, two sacks, 5½ tackles for loss, an interception, a fumble recovery and a pass breakup.