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Player Spotlight: Emmanuel Albert

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Player Spotlight: Emmanuel Albert

Emmanual Albert surges ahead during an intrasquad game this season. Todd Lunow photo.

Is Emmanuel Albert the best college player you don't know about?

Quite possibly. Albert is on the #1 Lindenwood Lions and everyone around that team says the same thing—their team is built on what Albert does. It's hard to imagine it comes down to just one guy, and it doesn't. Lindenwood's tight five as a whole is going an excellent job setting the platform, and the Lions enjoy an active front row, with Tinashe Muchena at No. 8 getting them go-forward when they need it.

Evan Williams is almost lights out with his goalkicking and is very smart in using a very effective backline.

But Albert seems to be in the middle of it all anyway. He joins Muchena as the guy to get them going straight ahead when they've been driven back. He runs the lineouts, calling the plays, lifting, jumping, and, last week, stealing ball.

Lindenwood's scrum has shown its power too, and against Central Washington their ability to ruin CWU's scrum possession and steal lineouts made launching an attack all kinds of problems for the Wildcats.

"For me I think the season's been going well, especially with [analyst] Jimmy Harrison coming back; he's definitely helped me elevate my game both on offense and defense," Albert told Goff Rugby Report. 

Albert isn't flashy, but he does all those things you need a rugby player to do—tackle, get those crucial two meters past the gain line, win ball, ruin everyone else's.

It's not the kind of player one celebrates ... but maybe it should be. A produce of Eagan HS in Minnesota, the 6-3 senior may be flying under the radar, but we hope not for much longer.