Feb. 4, 2013
EVANSTON, Ill. -- National Signing Day has arrived! Today is the day head coach Pat Fitzgerald and Northwestern Football will introduce the newest batch of Wildcats, and NUsports.com and its affiliated social media platforms are the one-stop source for fans interested in meeting the latest additions to Chicago's Big Ten Team.
5:59 A.M. CT -- Good morning Wildcats fans! The lights are on in the offices of our athletics communications staff as well as the football offices, where our coaching staff is accompanied by compliance director Aaron Hosmon as they await the first batch of NLIs off the fax machine!
Signees are permitted to submit their letters of intent at 7 a.m. local time, so over the next hour we anticipate a good deal of our East Coast commitments to make their college choice official.
Be sure to follow @NU_Sports and @NUDARCompliance on Twitter to be notified the moment we receive a signee's NLI and to receive links to their high school video highlight reels.
6:06 A.M. CT -- While we await our first NLI, enjoy some light reading from the Chicago Tribune's excellent columnist David Haugh about Northwestern's philosophy of commitment during the recruiting process.
The early shoutout in the piece to Coach Fitzgerald's wife Stacy is a good reminder that National Signing Day is a day to recognize and thank all the wives of our football coaching staff, who have seen very little of their husbands over the last month during the recruiting sprint to the finish of Signing Day!
6:11 A.M. CT -- We have a winner! @NUDARCompliance reports that our first NLI across the fax machine comes from offensive lineman Sam Coverdale of Chagrin Falls, Ohio, and Kenston High School! Sam is listed at 6-6, 275, and his bio tells us he is also a certified SCUBA diver! Impressive!
Watch Video Highlights of Sam Coverdale
6:12 A.M. CT -- Just behind Sam was speedy cornerback Marcus McShepard, another Ohio product out of Cleveland Heights High School. Congratulations Marcus!
Watch Video Highlights of Marcus McShepard
6:22 A.M. CT -- They're coming fast and furious now, and we have our third straight Ohio commitment to open the morning! Must have solid fax connections in the Buckeye State. Welcome to another cornerback, Keith Watkins II out of a reputable Moeller program in Cincinnati.
Watch Video Highlights of Keith Watkins II
And at the same time, we have both our first non-Ohio signee as well as the first to submit their NLI via email rather than fax! Welcome to safety Kyle Queiro (pronounced 'KAY-ro') out of powerhouse Bergen Catholic high school in New Jersey! Kyle joins his former high school teammate, NU wide receiver Cameron Dickerson, with the Wildcats.
Watch Video Highlights of Kyle Queiro
6:29 A.M. CT -- The Ohioans strike again as running back Godwin Igwebuike of Pickerington North officially becomes a Wildcat! Godwin was a finalist for the Mr. Football award in talent-rich Ohio -- and at six feet tall stands just a bit over our own 1,000-yard rusher, Venric Mark!
Watch Video Highlights of Godwin Igwebuike
Punter and place-kicker Hunter Niswander becomes the fifth Ohioan to commit so far this morning, welcome Hunter! Hunter comes to NU from Peninsula, Ohio (near Akron) and stands at an impressive 6-foot-5.
Watch Video Highlights of Hunter Niswander
6:44 A.M. CT -- The staggered nature of NLI arrivals by time zone always makes Signing Day a good opportunity to use the word 'lull,' which consists of almost all L's. Anyway, during this mini-lull we recommend you check out TheWildcatWay.com, the social media hub of Northwestern Football and another great source for Signing Day info in one place.
6:58 A.M. CT -- Two minutes until we hit 7 a.m. CT and the green light for folks in the Central time zone to submit their NLI's. Excited to see who will be first in the group!
7:07 A.M. CT -- Well, that previous entry may have drawn a false start flag on us because our first NLI in the 7 o'clock hour is from yet another Eastern time zone commitment! Welcome to linebacker Anthony Walker of Monsignor Pace High School in Miami, Fla. Walker totaled 200 career tackles with eight picks and six fumble recoveries in his career.
Watch Video Highlights of Anthony Walker
7:11 A.M. CT -- There it is, our first Central time zoner comes from an area of the country that Wildcats fans must have come to love by now -- Houston, Texas! Welcome to Jayme Taylor out of The Woodlands, who is the latest in a long line of Houston-area players to come to NU. Jayme is a superback and will look to learn from the success of Drake Dunsmore and rising Wildcats sophomore Dan Vitale.
Watch Video Highlights of Jayme Taylor
7:15 A.M. CT -- Say hello to our first signee from the state of Illinois, Tom Fuessel of Lincon-Way East High School! At 6-4 and 185 pounds, Tom is a versatile player who was recruited as an 'athlete' but is likely to be in the mix as a wide receiver to begin his NU career.
Watch Video Highlights of Tom Fuessel
And we keep things rolling with offensive lineman Brad North, a product of Allen, Texas. Welcome to the upper Midwest, Brad!
Watch Video Highlights of Brad North
7:21 A.M. CT -- We are signed, sealed and delivered on all of our Eastern time zone commitments after the receipt of an NLI from defensive tackle Eric Joraskie out of Mount Carmel, Pa.! Eric is one of our many multi-talented recruits at Northwestern -- he held lead performing roles in high school musical productions of "Grease" and "Godspell." At 6-foot-4, an imposing Danny Zuko, no doubt!
Watch Video Highlights of Eric Joraskie
After Eric, we had two more NLI's in succession, beginning with heralded Maine South quarterback Matt Alviti! Matt's style of play has drawn comparisons to another dual-threat QB who was particularly 'Strong' for the 'Cats in recent seasons -- check out his highlights to see why:
Watch Video Highlights of Matt Alviti
Following suit was an offensive lineman who may have a long future blocking for Mr. Alviti. Give a big welcome to Blake King of Shorewood, Ill., and Minooka High School!
Watch Video Highlights of Blake King
7:30 A.M. CT -- Another recruit from the Land of Lincoln decides to join Chicago's Big Ten Team. Meet defensive tackle Tyler Lancaster out of Romeoville and Plainfield East, who on the offensive side of the ball did not surrender a sack in three years of varsity football.
Watch Video Highlights of Tyler Lancaster
7:38 A.M. CT -- Our final Illinois signee makes it official, welcome to cornerback Matthew Harris of La Grange, Ill. and Lyons High School. In addition to his football talents, Matt is also a tremendous long jumper in track and field, placing second in the state a year ago.
Watch Video Highlights of Matthew Harris
7:50 A.M. CT -- With 10 minutes to spare (there is no actual deadline, but our signees have been so prompt it feels that way!), our final expected NLI from the Central time zone comes across the fax from wide receiver Macan Wilson. Macan is our second Houston product and third Texan in the class, coming to NU from Kinkaid High School where he is the baseball program's all-time home run leader!
Watch Video Highlights of Macan Wilson
8:08 A.M. CT -- As we catch our breath and await NLIs from our expected West Coast commitments, there is still some business to attend to. In addition to 19 scholarship signees, Northwestern is happy to announce today two walk-ons set to join the Wildcats next fall. Welcome to NU to offensive lineman Zack Guritz of Darien, Ill., and Hinsdale South, as well as OL Graham Bullmore of Kenosha, Wis., and Bradford High School. Both will be excellent additions to offensive line coach Adam Cushing's offensive line room next season.
Watch Video Highlights of Zack Guritz
Watch Video Highlights of Graham Bullmore
9:18 A.M. CT -- A few chocolate donuts and cups of coffee and we're back better than ever! We just received our first NLI from the Pacific time zone and our 17th overall! Congratulations to running back Xavier Menifield of Valencia, Calif., and Sierra Canyon High School, where as a junior Xavier helped his squad to an undefeated 15-0 season and a Division IV state championship.
Watch Video Highlights of Xavier Menifield
9:37 A.M. CT -- Back-to-back running backs (and the third in this recruiting class) for the 'Cats! Warren Long of Union City, Calif. (San Jose area) and James Logan High School has submitted his signed NLI, congrats to him! Warren was named the 2012 Northern California Player of the Year by the San Francisco Chronicle.
Watch Video Highlights of Warren Long
9:42 A.M. CT -- That's a wrap! Talented linebacker Brett Walsh of Monrovia, Calif., submits his NLI to become the 19th and final signee in the 2013 recruiting class. Welcome Brett and all the 'Cats introduced today!
Watch Video Highlights of Brett Walsh
The lengthy list of our newcomers' stellar high school accomplishments will be posted momentarily on NUsports.com. Remember to watch live as Coach Fitz introduces his class to the media at 1 p.m. CT today (see link below) and thanks for joining us for 2013 National Signing Day coverage. Go 'Cats!
Live Online Video
Northwestern head coach Pat Fitzgerald
is scheduled to announce his crop of incoming Wildcats at 1 p.m. CT in an event at Ditka's Restaurant in Chicago. Subscribers to NUsports.com's All-Access video services
will be able to watch a live stream of the gathering beginning at 1 p.m.
Once all signees have successfully submitted their NLIs and before the start of Fitzgerald's news conference, the official press release and list of signee bios will be posted to NUsports.com.
Big Ten Roundup on BTN
The Big Ten Network will once again devote a 90-minute special to Signing Day news from around the conference beginning at 2 p.m. CT. The show will break down each school's recruiting class and feature insight from many of the league's head coaches, including Pat Fitzgerald.
Previous Signing Day Live Blogs
2012 Signing Day
2011 Signing Day
2010 Signing Day
2009 Signing Day
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