German Import @HeroKanu Is a Hero at Santa Margarita Catholic

If you have watched him play, you would never guess that Santa Margarita Catholic defensive lineman Hero Kanu has only been playing football for two years. That’s right. The four-star prospect is just a baby when it comes to American football.

That is because Kanu grew up playing soccer. That would be the sport of choice for most boys in his home country of Germany. Kanu grew up in Geltendorf, which is located in Bavaria, home of the annual Oktoberfest.

It was just this March that the 6-foot-5-inch, 293-pound Kanu played in his very first football game. On March 12, Kanu and his teammates took the field against Mayfair. SMC would go on to win 54-16. You can see Kanu’s highlights in the video below.

Scouting Report

The first thing you notice about Kanu is his aforementioned size. Not many 16-year-olds stand a full 6-5 and weigh at least 290. Then, there is the rare combination of size and speed. Kanu moves exceptionally well for an athlete of his physical makeup.

Despite having only played American football for a short time, Kanu is coachable and has a motor that just won’t quit. It’s something that can be improved with coaching, but Kanu has it already. He plays with passion just doesn’t give up on plays.

The SMC defensive tackle has the ability to fight through double teams and has natural pass rush talent. He can only get better as he learns the game and the techniques utilized at his position. Kanu may have more upside potential than any defensive lineman in the Class of 2022.


After wreaking havoc on Mayfair in Game 1 of the 2020-21 season, Kanu’s recruiting meter immediately went to high. Before a week could pass after Kanu’s first game on March 12, the senior-to-be already had four FBS Power 5 offers.

Washington was first with an offer on March 16. USC, Arizona, and Oregon followed. Arizona State would enter the picture on March 21 with another Pac-12 offer. Currently, Kanu has over two dozen offers.

He recently took the time to cut his potential college choices to his 10 favorites.

Santa Margarita Catholic DL Hero Kanu announced his top ten list.

Among Kanu’s top ten are such perennial playoff programs as Alabama, Clemson, Ohio State, and Oklahoma. Should Kanu stay on the West Coast, USC and Washington are the only two Pac-12 programs to make the cut.

The most recent offer Kanu picked up was from the SEC’s Vanderbilt. The Commodores offered on July 23.

Kanu was offered by Vanderbilt on July 23.

The Future

With just two years of experience playing football, Kanu still has much to learn. He is probably spinning with the amount of attention he is receiving, but the four-star recruit seems to be handling it well.

Part of the intrigue surrounding this California prospect can be seen in this video. It was taken when Kanu attended a one-day camp at Ohio State. He tested extremely well and displayed a kind of athleticism that is rare among defensive line prospects.

With another season yet to play, Kanu will take his time figuring out his college choice. Whatever it is, there is a Power 5 program out there that is going to get one of the nation’s best defensive line recruits and a potential Year 1 starter.

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