EVANSTON, Ill. -- Head Coach Pat Fitzgerald and the Northwestern University football program announced today the signing of 19 football recruits to National Letters of Intent.
Five of Northwestern's 19 signees from this Midwest-heavy group hail from the Chicagoland area. Another recruit, Ben Johnson, resides across the Illinois-Wisconsin border in southeastern Wisconsin. Besides the five recruits from Illinois, five are from Ohio, two come from both Michigan and Missouri, and one each hails from Kansas, Minnesota and Wisconsin. Only two signees -- quarterback Dan Persa of Bethlehem, Pa., and offensive lineman Al Netter of Rohnert Park, Calif. -- come from outside the Midwest region.
"I'm thrilled with the commitments we received today," said Fitzgerald. "This is an outstanding class filled with talented players, but it's also a group of high-character and intelligent men who are going to mesh well with our returning student-athletes. It's a balanced class, and one that meets our primary recruiting needs for the upcoming season.
"Some recruiting services are touting the class as one of the best we've had, or one of the best we've had in years. We may need to wait a couple seasons to see how that statement pans out. From a character standpoint, I'm confident we hit the nail on the head and we're bringing a quality group of student-athletes to Northwestern.
"As usual, our coaching staff and players deserve a great deal of credit for attracting this class. Our players represent our University so well and they really help us make sure we find student-athletes who are a good fit for Northwestern."
This year's class is once again balanced with offensive and defensive players -- 10 on defense and nine on offense.
Signing Day Notes:
The breakdown on NU's signees, by position: defensive back (4), offensive line (3), defensive line (3), linebacker (3), tight end/superback (3), quarterback (1), wide receiver (1) and running back (1).
Northwestern added five more student-athletes from Ohio, giving the Wildcats a total of 12 players from Ohio on their current roster, second most on the team. Illinois continues to lead the way with a total of 22 players.
With the signing of Jordan Mabin, Northwestern will have Ohio's No. 1 career rusher (Tyrell Sutton, 9,426 yards) and the state's No. 6 career rusher (Mabin, 6,700 yards) on the same roster in the fall of 2007. Mabin, however, is slated to begin his career at cornerback at Northwestern. The Wildcats have had great success in recent years attracting some of Ohio's top ground-gainers to Evanston. In 2001, the Wildcats signed Jeff Backes, who totaled the third-best single-season rushing figure (3,353 yards) in Ohio.
For the third consecutive year, Northwestern signed a player from the Chicago Public League, inking wide receiver Charles Brown from Robeson High. Brown is the first Robeson student-athlete to earn an athletic scholarship at Northwestern. Last year, NU signed Corbin Bryant from Morgan Park High School, and the previous year (2005), Rasheed Ward became the Wildcats' first Public League player since 1997.
Northwestern landed its first Evanston Township High product -- cornerback Mike Bolden -- since Leonard English played for the Wildcats in the early 1990s.
High School: Rivals.com All-Region, SuperPrep All-Midwest and Velocity/PrepStar All-Region offensive lineman ...
Ranked 19th among all players in SuperPrep Illinois player ranking and 22nd among all players (seventh among
offensive linemen) in Rivals.com Illinois player ranking ... Class 7A all-state selection and a two-time All-East Suburban
Catholic Conference tackle ... ESCC's 2006 Offensive Lineman of the Year ... Two-time all-city choice ... Chicago Tribune
All-State special mention ... Daily Herald All-Area and all-city mention for Naperville/Lisle ... Redwings' team MVP on
offense ... Three-year starter and letterwinner ... Team captain ... Helped the Redwings reach the playoffs his sophomore
and senior seasons, with the 2006 squad advancing to the second round ... Also lettered in basketball (once) and track
and field (three times) .. Four-year Honor Roll student ... NHS and Illinois State Scholar ... Coached by Gary Goforth.
Personal: Born Colin O'Donnell Armstrong on 6/7/1989 ... Son of Mark and Bridget Armstrong ... During prep career,
played against current NU players Kevin Frymire and Chris Jeske.
High School: Rivals.com All-Region, SuperPrep All-Midwest and Velocity/PrepStar All-Region safety ... Ranked 28th
among all players (ninth among defensive backs) in Rivals.com Ohio player ranking and 32nd among all players in
SuperPrep Ohio player ranking ... Ranked 20th-best safety nationally by Tom Lemming, 43rd-best safety nationally by
SuperPrep, 49th-best safety nationally by Rivals.com and 55th-best safety nationally by ESPN/Scouts, Inc. ... First-team
All-Ohio (Division II), first-team All-Northeast Ohio Inland District and first-team All-Suburban League in 2006 ... Also
named a first-team all-league selection and a second-team All-Northeast Ohio Inland District player his junior season ...
Team MVP in 2006 ... Tabbed Best Offensive Back and Best Defensive Back by teammates his senior year ... Named the
team's Best Receiver as a junior ... Named to Ohio's Tremendous 26 ... Akron Touchdown Club and Dapper Dan honoree
... Rated as a five-star prospect by Ohio High Magazine and the state's 14th-best prospect, regardless of position ...
McDonald's Athlete of the Week ... In his junior and senior seasons, totaled 145 tackles (60 solo hits his senior year) and
eight interceptions ... Had 37 receptions in 2005 and '06 for 850 yards ... Scored 12 touchdowns ... Also ran for 803 yards
(69 carries) in 2006 ... Notched the game-winning interception against Parma Normandy, which helped team advance to
regional semifinals ... Selected to play in 2007 Ohio North-South game in Columbus, Ohio (June 16) ... Three-year starter
and letterwinner, team captain ... Also lettered one year in track (sprints/relays) ... National Honor Roll and Who's Who ...
Coached by Dan Boarman.
Personal: Born David P. Arnold Jr. on 9/15/1989 ... Son of Shannon and Frank Pangas and Dave Arnold ... Father, Dave,
played football at Michigan and was later drafted by the Pittsburgh Steelers (1989) ... Uncle, Steven Arnold, is the head
basketball coach at Warren Harding ... Uncle, Peter Pangas, played basketball at Eastern Michigan before playing
professionally in Greece for seven years.
High School: Rivals.com All-Region, SuperPrep All-Midwest and Velocity/PrepStar All-Region cornerback ... Ranked 12th
among all players in SuperPrep Illinois player ranking and 14th among all players (third among defensive backs) in
Rivals.com Illinois player ranking ... Ranked 33rd-best cornerback nationally by Rivals.com and 36th-best cornerback
nationally by ESPN/Scouts, Inc. ... A two-time (2005-06) All-Central Suburban South Conference, all-area and all-region
honoree ... 2006 preseason Chicago Tribune all-state team ... Starred on both sides of the ball, notching 88 tackles, 11
interceptions, 2 sacks and 4 recovered fumbles as a cornerback his senior season ... On offense in 2006, rushed for
1,600-plus yards, 22 rushing TD's, 8 receiving TD's and also threw a pair of touchdown passes ... 2,000-plus all-purpose
yards as a senior ... One of his top statistical games came against Niles West in 2006: 41 carries for 344 rushing yards,
three rushing TD's, one receiving TD, one interception, 11 tackles, one sack and 88 passing yards ... Lettered all four
years in football and track for the Wildkits ... Set ETHS school marks for career TD's scored (66), as well as most TD's by
a freshman and sophomore (varsity records) ... Also set single-season all-purpose yardage mark ... One of his prep
coaches was D'Wayne Bates, a former NU star and Hall-of-Famer ... Four-year Honor Roll member and freshman Honor
Society ... Coached by Tony Johnson.
Personal: Born Michael Lewis Bolden on 7/15/1989 ... Son of James and Jan Bolden ... Father, James, played football at
Michigan (1973-76) ... First Evanston Township H.S. football player to attend Northwestern since Leonard English was a
member of the Wildcats in 1993 ... Played against current Wildcat Carl Fisher (Bolingbrook).
High School: Rivals.com All-Region, SuperPrep All-Midwest and Velocity/PrepStar All-Region wide receiver ... Ranked
20th among all players in SuperPrep Illinois player ranking and 26th among all players (second among wide receivers) in
Rivals.com Illinois player ranking ... Ranked 50th-best safety (his high school defensive position) nationally by
ESPN/Scouts, Inc. ... Named to Illinois High School Football Coaches Association all-state team ... IHSFCA Academic All-
State team ... 2006 Chicago Sun-Times first-team All-City, Chicago Tribune special mention all-state and Champaign News-Gazette special mention all-state ... Four-time All-Land of Lincoln Conference selection ... WFLD-TV FOX 32 Prep Star
Athlete of the Week ... Registered some impressive statistics for his four-year career with the Raiders: 4,320 total yards,
62 touchdowns, 24 interceptions, 193 receptions and 234 tackles ... Caught 53 passes for 1,153 yards and 16 TD's his
senior season ... Played receiver and safety all four years ... Team captain ... Helped the Raiders to a four-year mark of
31-13 with two consecutive state playoff appearances (2005-06) ... Robeson won first state playoff game in 11 years in
2006 ... Caught four passes for 80 yards and two TD's in 2006 playoff win .. Selected to play in Chicago Public Schools
All-Star Game ... Also lettered in track (four years) and basketball (two years) ... Class valedictorian ... Ranked first out of
195 students ... NHS member ... First student-athlete from Robeson High to attend Northwestern on an athletic
scholarship ... Coached by Fabray Collins.
Personal: Born Charles Demetrius Brown on 6/6/1988 ... Son of Gloria Williams and Charles M. Brown ... Played against
current NU players Rasheed Ward and Corbin Bryant.
High School: Rivals.com All-Region, SuperPrep All-Midwest and Velocity/PrepStar All-Region defensive end ... Ranked
20th among all players (third among defensive ends) in Rivals.com Ohio player ranking and 28th among all players in
SuperPrep Ohio player ranking ... Ranked 31st-best strongside defensive end nationally by Rivals.com, 58th-best
defensive end nationally by Rivals.com and 43rd-best defensive end nationally by ESPN/Scouts, Inc. ... Injured his knee in
the third game of his senior season and missed the remainder of the year ... As a junior, earned first-team All-Tri-County,
All-County, All-Quad County and All-Northeast Ohio Inland District honors ... Vindicator "Elite 11" honoree ... In 2005,
totaled 100-plus tackles (as a middle linebacker) and four forced fumbles ... Had 21 tackles his senior season before
suffering the injury ... Totaled 11 tackles, as well as three receptions (two for TD's), against Minerva his senior year ...
Played tight end for the Blue Devils in 2006 ... Blue Devils went 7-3 his junior year ... Team captain ... Also lettered in track
... Coached by Jim Tsilimos.
Personal: Born Vincent Alan Browne on 10/13/1988 ... Son of Ed and Mary Browne.
High School: Velocity/PrepStar All-Region offensive lineman ... Ranked 166th-best offensive tackle nationally by
ESPN/Scouts, Inc. ... Two-time all-state, three-time all-district and three-time all-city honoree ... Selected to play in Ohio's
North-South All-Star game ... Helped the Titans to back-to-back 8-3 records in 2005 and '06, and appearances in the Ohio
state playoffs ... Team captain ... Also lettered in baseball, playing first base ... Regular on school's Honor Roll ... Coached
by Doug Pearson.
Personal: Born Benjamin James Burkett on 6/19/1989 ... Son of Jim and Susan Burkett ... Grandfather, Ernest Berg,
played baseball at Arizona.
High School: Rivals.com All-Region and Velocity/PrepStar All-Region running back ... Ranked 29th among all players
(seventh among running backs) in Rivals.com Missouri player rankings ... Ranked 129th-best running back nationally by
ESPN/Scouts, Inc. ... 2006 all-state selection ... Two-time Columbia Tribune All-Area selection (2005-06) ... Tabbed the
Tribune's Offensive MVP in 2006 when he led the area in rushing (1,690 yards) and averaged 10.3 yards per carry ...
Scored 20 rushing TD's and 25 overall to finish as the Bruins' rushing and scoring leader ... Versus Hickman H.S.,
produced a career-best game: 324 total yards and four TD's (just eight rushing attempts) ... Had TD runs of 98 and 99
yards in the contest, along with a 96-yard screen pass ... Holds school marks for career rushing, career points, single-season
rushing and single-season points ... Team captain ... Also lettered one year in baseball ... Coached by A.J. Ofodile.
Personal: Born Scott Michael Concannon on 12/10/1988 ... Son of Larna Lavelle and Pat Concannon.
High School: Rivals.com All-Region, SuperPrep All-Midwest and Velocity/PrepStar All-Region defensive lineman ...
Ranked 23rd among all players in SuperPrep Illinois player ranking and 27th among all players (fourth among defensive
ends) in Rivals.com Illinois player ranking ... Ranked 38th-best defensive end nationally by ESPN/Scouts, Inc. ... IHSA
Football Coaches and Champaign News-Gazette first-team all-state selection ... Two-time (2005-06) Daily Herald All-Area
and All-West Suburban Conference selection ... 2006 West Suburban Conference Defensive Player of the Year ... Red
Devils' team MVP ... Two-time Prep Football Report All-Area team (2005-06) ... Suburban Life All-Area selection ...
Selected to play in 2007 Illinois Shrine All-Star game ... Played a key role in the Red Devils' record-setting defense that set
a school mark for sacks -- he contributed with 12 ... Totaled 88 tackles, 12 sacks and 23 total TFL's his senior year ...
Notched 65 tackles, 8 sacks and 14 TFL's as a junior ... As a three-year letterwinner, Hinsdale Central compiled a 26-10
cumulative record and reached the Class 8A state playoffs all three years ... Red Devils reached the semifinal round his
junior year ... HC went 11-1 and won WSC title in 2004 ... Also lettered two years in baseball ... School's Honor Roll
recipient ... Coached by Tony Lombardi (2003-05) and Mike DiMatteo (2006).
Personal: Born Jack J. DiNardo on 1/20/1989 ... Son of Larry and Paula DiNardo ... Played against fellow 2007 signees
Michael Bolden (Evanston) and Kevin Watt (Glenbard West) ... His father, Larry, was a two-time All-American at Notre
Dame (1969-70) and his uncle, Gerry DiNardo, was an All-American at Notre Dame (1974), as well as the former head
football coach at Vanderbilt, LSU and Indiana ... His uncle, John Voorhees, was Northwestern's 1971 football team MVP.
High School: Rivals.com All-Region and Velocity/PrepStar All-Region tight end ... Ranked 15th among all players (second
among tight ends) in Rivals.com Kansas player ranking ... Ranked 21st-best tight end nationally by ESPN/Scouts, Inc. ...
Two-time first-team all-state honoree ... Two-time team MVP and first-team All-Eastern Kansas League selection ... 2006
first-team All-Sun ... Named to 810 Sports Radio all-star team ... As a junior, caught 41 passes for 586 yards and 8 TD's ...
Totaled 56 receptions for 841 yards and 9 TD's his senior season ... Finished career with 105 receptions and 19 TD's ...
Helped lead St. Thomas Aquinas to a two-year (2005-06) mark of 19-4, including a 10-2 mark his senior year ... Finished
as sub-state runners-up both years ... Team captain ... Also lettered in track (three years) and basketball (two years) ...
Coached by Kevin Kopecky.
Personal: Born Drake C. Dunsmore on 11/4/1988 ... Son of Pat and Blanca Dunsmore ... Father, Pat, who played college
football at Drake, played tight end two years (1983-84) with the Chicago Bears.
High School: Velocity/SuperPrep All-Region and Rivals.com All-Region selection ... Ranked 10th among all players (first
among linebackers) in Rivals.com Wisconsin player ranking ... First-team all-state selection by Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
and WisconsinPreps.com ... Second-team all-state selection by Associated Press ... A two-time Kenosha News All-County
and Midwest Classic All-Conference first-team selection (defensive back) ... Named the Midwest Classic Defensive Player
of the Year in 2006 ... Also earned all-conference honors (second team) as a sophomore ... Totaled 195 solo tackles, 44
assisted tackles, 10 interceptions and 26 TFL's (16 his senior season) during three-year prep career ... As a receiver,
totaled 53 receptions for 1,098 yards (20.7 ypr) and 14 TD's ... Selected to play in Wisconsin's North-South All-Star game
... Pacers' Defensive Player of the Year in 2006 ... Led the Pacers to a two-year mark of 16-5 (junior and senior seasons),
with his team reaching the state playoffs both years ... Shoreland Lutheran went 9-2 and won the conference title his junior
season ... Team captain ... School's Alan Ameche Award nominee (best high school football player in the county) ... Also
lettered in track and basketball ... Advanced to the state finals in the long jump his junior year ... Holds school records for
100 meters, 200 meters, long jump and 4x800 relay ... Honorable mention All-Midwest Classic Conference selection and
team co-captain in basketball ... Team's Defensive Player of the Year in basketball, too ... National Honor Society and
Honor Roll all four years ... Active in community service projects ... Coached by Mark Stein.
Personal: Born Benjamin Thomas Johnson on 11/9/1988 ... Son of Russell and Deborah Johnson ... Uncle, Steve Smith,
played baseball at Miami (Ohio).
High School: Rivals.com All-Region, SuperPrep All-Midwest and Velocity/PrepStar All-Region tight end ... Ranked 22nd
among all players (second among tight ends, behind another NU recruit, Josh Rooks) in Rivals.com Michigan player
ranking ... Ranked 39th-best tight end nationally by Rivals.com, 53rd-best tight end nationally by ESPN/Scouts, Inc., and
67th-best tight end nationally by SuperPrep ... Ann Arbor News All-Area selection ... Two-time All-Southeastern
Conference honoree (2005-06) ... Totaled 18 receptions for 365 yards and 3 TD's his senior season ... 16 receptions for
200 yards as a junior ... Pioneers advanced to the playoffs and 8-3 in 2005 and 7-4 in 2006 ... Recipient of school's 2006
Outstanding Academic Achievement Award ... Also lettered two years in basketball ... First football player in 20 years from
Ann Arbor Pioneer to earn a Big Ten athletic scholarship ... Coached by Chuck White.
Personal: Born Cameron Edward Joplin on 4/4/1989 ... Son of Bernadine Joplin and ward of Noah Hurwitz ... Interested in a
High School: Velocity/PrepStar All-American honoree ... All-Region Rivals.com All-Region and SuperPrep All-Midwest
honoree ... Ranked 10th among all players in SuperPrep Ohio player ranking and 17th among all players (sixth among
defensive backs) in Rivals.com Ohio player ranking ... Ranked 20th-best cornerback nationally by SuperPrep, 27th-best defensive back
nationally by Rivals.com and 87th-best safety nationally by ESPN/Scouts, Inc. ... Ohio's Division II Offensive Player of the
Year ... All-Ohio (all-state) selection ... Named 2006 Offensive Player of the Year by Northeast Ohio Inland District, the
Cleveland Plain Dealer (Summit/Portage County), the Akron Beacon-Journal and Sun Newspapers ... Four-time first-team
All-Western Reserve Conference selection ... Named conference's Offensive MVP in 2006 ... Also tabbed the Fox 8 and
Cable 9 Player of the Year ... Ohio News Network (ONN) first-team tailback in 2006 ... Recipient of the Plain Dealer's "Best
of the Best" award ... Knights' three-time team MVP (2004-06) and their 2006 Offensive MVP ... Offensively, rushed for
6,700 career yards, including 2,354 yards his senior year, on 869 attempts (7.7 ypc) ... His career rushing figure is the
sixth-best mark in Ohio prep history ... Averaged 8.1 ypc his senior season ... Totaled 81 career rushing TD's (28 in 2006)
... Also added 61 career receptions for 649 yards (10.6 ypr) and 5 TD's ... Scored a total of 92 career TD's -- ninth most in
Ohio history--(81 rushing, 5 receiving, 3 kickoff returns, 3 punt returns) and 12 two-point PAT's for 564 career points ...
Defensively, totaled 143 career tackles (123 solos) and 11 interceptions ... 8,866 career all-purpose yards (2,805 his senior
season) ... Rushed for a school-record 317 yards against Twinsburg ... Invited to play in MSL All-American Bowl in Orlando
and the Big 33 All-Star game, pitting stars from Ohio vs. Pennsylvania ... Helped the Knights go 38-10 during his four-year
career ... Team made the playoffs three of his four years, which included a state semifinal appearance in 2006 ...
Conference champs in 2006 ... Played in every game ... Also lettered in track (sprints/relays) ... High Honor Roll and
Leadership Award ... Played against fellow NU signee David Arnold ... Coached by Keith Boedicker.
Personal: Born Jordan C. Mabin on 10/31/1988 ... Son of Howard and Debbie Mabin ... Father played football at Louisville,
while cousins Dorin Dickerson (U. of Pittsburgh) and Ron Dickerson (Miami Dolphins, Temple coach), also are involved in
football ... Uncle, Wes Mabin, played at Nebraska ... Attended same high school as former NU player, Rashad Morton.
High School: Rivals.com All-Region, SuperPrep All-Midlands and Velocity/PrepStar All-Region honoree ... Ranked 13th
among all players in SuperPrep Missouri player ranking and 19th among all players (fourth among offensive linemen) in
Rivals.com Missouri player ranking ... Ranked 13th-best center by SuperPrep and 60th-best offensive lineman by
Rivals.com ... Two-time first-team all-state (coaches/media) selection ... 2006 first-team St. Louis Post-Dispatch All-Metro
selection, and a second-team selection in 2005 ... Three-time first-team All-Metro Catholic Conference honoree (2004-06)
... Honorable mention all-state and all-metro in 2004 ... Played offensive and defensive tackle for the Jr. Billikens ... Helped
lead SLUH to 7-3, 8-2 and 7-4 records in 2004, 2005 and 2006, respectively ... Totaled 22 solo tackles and 12 TFL's (5
sacks) his senior year ... Also one of Missouri's top track and field athletes, placing fifth in the shot put and 16th in discus at
the 2006 state meet ... Honor Roll and three-time MCC All-Academic squad ... Also lettered one year in ice hockey and
wrestling ... Coached by Gary Kornfeld.
Personal: Born Nikolao Troy Mafuli on 6/30/1989 ... Son of Vae and Jackie Mafuli ... Played with current NU player
Stephen Simmons ... Father, Vae, played football at Truman State (formerly Northeast Missouri State University).
High School: Velocity/PrepStar All-American ... Rivals.com All-Region and SuperPrep All-Midwest linebacker ... Ranked
fifth among all players in SuperPrep Minnesota player ranking and 10th among all players (third among linebackers) in
Rivals.com Minnesota player ranking ... Ranked 17th nationally among inside linebackers (first in Minnesota) by Tom
Lemming ... Ranked 37th-best inside linebacker nationally by Rivals.com, 28th-best inside linebacker nationally by
ESPN/Scouts, Inc., and 32nd-best middle linebacker nationally by SuperPrep ... Earned first-team all-state honors from the
Associated Press, Minneapolis Star-Tribune and St. Paul Pioneer Press ... Helped lead the Eagles to the 2006 Prep Bowl
(Minnesota state championship game) for Class 5, the largest division in the state ... Eden Prairie won the state
championship, finished 14-0 and was ranked 20th nationally by one poll ... Named MVP of the 2006 Prep Bowl and the
WCCO Radio Player of the Game ... In his three years as a starter, the Eagles went 36-3 ... Eden Prairie reached the
state semifinals his junior year ... Recorded 65 solo tackles in 2006, which included 20 TFL's and 8 sacks ... Also had five
interceptions, three forced fumbles and one fumble recovery ... Exploded on the national scene his junior year with 143
total tackles, 26 TFL's, 7 sacks and 3 interceptions ... Invited to play in 2006-07 Minnesota Senior Bowl ... 2006 U.S. Army
All-American All-Combine Team ... 2006 recipient of Eden Prairie's Robert Moran Award for best exemplifying
sportsmanship, athleticism and clean living ... Coached by Mike Grant, son of former Minnesota Viking Head Coach Bud
Personal: Born Bryce Edwin McNaul on 12/29/1988 ... Son of Eric and Debra McNaul ... Brother, Austin, plays rugby for
Army at West Point and team is presently ranked No. 1 nationally ... Father, Eric, played football for Gerry Faust at
Cincinnati Moeller when they won a national championship in 1977 ... Grandfather, Daniel Drotar, was a two-time all-state
football player and wrestler in California.
High School: Rivals.com All-Region player ... 2006 All-North Coast Section first-team tackle and second-team San
Francisco Chronicle All-Metro team honoree ... Ranked the 80th-best player (11th among offensive linemen) by Rivals.com
in California player ranking ... Ranked 61st-best offensive tackle nationally by Rivals.com and 188th-best offensive tackle
nationally by ESPN/Scouts, Inc. ... Ranked 78th-best tight end nationally by SuperPrep ... Honorable mention all-league
selection in 2005 ... Helped lead the Cardinals to the Division 3 state title game where they fell 27-20 in overtime to the
nation's top-ranked team, Oaks Christian of Westlake Village, Calif., which was led by Notre Dame-recruit Jimmy Clausen
... Cardinal Newman finished 13-2 in 2006 and won the NCS title ... Helped lead the Cardinals to the conference title in
2005 ... Also lettered in basketball and baseball ... Four-year Honor Roll and NCS Scholar-Athlete honoree ... Coached by
Personal: Born Alexander Joseph Netter on 7/21/1989 ... Son of Joe and Barbara Netter ... Interested in a
High School: Rivals.com All-Region, SuperPrep All-Northeast and Velocity/PrepStar All-Region honoree ... Ranked 33rd
among all players (third among quarterbacks) in Rivals.com Pennsylvania player ranking and 54th among all players in
SuperPrep Pennsylvania player ranking ... Ranked 22nd-best dual-threat quarterback nationally by Rivals.com and 70th-best
overall quarterback nationally by SuperPrep ... Ranked 93rd nationally by ESPN/Scouts, Inc. ... 2006 Pennsylvania
4A A.P. Player of the Year ... 4A first-team all-state quarterback ... 2006 Maxwell Club Award for top high school player of
the year (Jim Henry Award) from Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Delaware ... 2006 Eastern Pennsylvania Football Player of the Year ...
Selected to play in the Big 33 All-Star game (Ohio vs. Pennsylvania), and will face NU signee Jordan Mabin from Ohio in
that game ... Three-time all-area and All-Lehigh Valley Conference quarterback (2004-06) ... 2005-06 All-Area Player of the
Year ... Became first player in Pennsylvania history to throw for over 2,000 yards and rush for over 1,000 yards in a single
season ... Finished career with 5,779 passing yards (402-of-669), 59 passing TD's, 2,526 rushing yards (400 attempts)
and 32 rushing TD's ... National Football Foundation (NFF) top Scholar-Athlete for the Lehigh Valley Chapter ... One of NFF's "Play it Smart" participants ... 2006 Platinum 33 selection ... Posted a 42-9 record as the Hurricanes' starting quarterback ...
Team won the 2005 District XI championship and finished as the 4A PIAA state runner-up ... Liberty duplicated those feats
again in 2006 ... Both years, the Hurricanes won the Eastern Pennsylvania championship ... NHS and Lehigh Valley
Conference Scholar-Athlete ... Also lettered four years in basketball and three in track and field (sprinter) ... Football team
captain ... Coached by Tim Moncman.
Personal: Born Daniel Vaughn Persa on 11/20/1988 ... Son of Dan and Jane Persa.
High School: 2006 second-team All-Ohio (all-state) selection ... Ranked 75th among all players in SuperPrep Ohio player
ranking ... Two-time first-team all-district, first-team all-county and first-team All-Ohio Capital Conference selection (2005-
06) ... 2006 Agonis-Columbus Dispatch selection ... Registered 127 tackles, 4 interceptions and 8 pass breakups his
senior season ... Also added 32 receptions (as a tight end) for 493 yards in 2006 ... Served as the Tigers' place-kicker,
booting 53-of-55 PAT's and 4-of-8 field goals ... Finished career with 277 tackles and 18 interceptions (7 in both 2004 and
2005) ... Selected to play in 2007 Ohio North-South All-Star game, as well as the OCC All-Star game ... Tigers finished
2006 as the Division II state runners-up, regional champions and OCC champions ... Team captain ... Also lettered in
baseball and track, and played one year of basketball ... Team captain in baseball (center fielder and pitcher), as well ...
Four years on High Honor Roll ... Vice president of Students Against Destructive Decisions (S.A.D.D.) ... Student Council
and Principal's Advisory Staff ... Coached by Jay Sharrett.
Personal: Born Brian Edward Peters on 10/31/1988 ... Son of Jeff and Carla Peters ... Father, Jeff, wrestled at Miami
(Ohio) ... Played against fellow NU signee Jordan Mabin.
High School: Rivals.com All-Region, SuperPrep All-Midwest and Velocity/PrepStar All-Region tight end ... Ranked 16th
among all players (first among tight ends) in Rivals.com Michigan player ranking and 21st among all players in SuperPrep
Michigan player ranking ... Ranked 33rd-best tight end nationally by Rivals.com, 22nd-best tight end nationally by
ESPN/Scouts, Inc., and 80th-best defensive tackle nationally by SuperPrep ... 2006 honorable mention all-state selection
... Named to 2006 Grand Rapids Press and Holland Sentinel All-Area teams ... Two-time all-conference honoree (2005-06)
... Totaled 20 receptions for 312 yards (15.6 ypr) and 2 TD's his senior season ... Defensively, while playing end, notched
32 tackles (20 solos), 8.5 TFLs and a pair of sacks ... Led the Maroons to the state playoffs for the first time in 2006 ...
Finished 7-3 overall ... Also lettered two times as a standout center for the Maroons' basketball team ... National Honor
Society ... Coached by Tim Lont.
Personal: Born Joshua Daniel Rooks on 6/5/1988 ... Son of Daniel and Deborah Rooks.
High School: Rivals.com All-Region, SuperPrep All-Midwest and Velocity/PrepStar All-Region linebacker/defensive
lineman ... Ranked 100th-best defensive end nationally by ESPN/Scouts, Inc., and 114th-best player overall in the
Midwest by SuperPrep ... 2006 IHSA Football Coaches all-state selection ... 2006 Chicago Sun-Times and Daily Herald
All-Area pick ... Three-time All-West Suburban Silver Conference honoree (2004-06) ... 2006 team MVP ... Tabbed the
West Suburban Silver Conference's 2006 MVP despite the Hilltoppers going 1-8 ... Team's Defensive MVP in 2005 ... Led
team in tackles all three years ... Finished with 245 career hits, including 110 in 2006, and 8 career pass breakups ...
Versatile player who logged time at fullback, linebacker, offensive line and tight end during his prep career ... Two-time
team captain ... Member of NHS and Spanish Honors Society ... Coached by John Karpowicz.
Personal: Born Kevin Francis Watt on 7/30/1988 ... Son of Richard and Mary Pat Watt ... Father, Richard, played football
at Hillsdale College and grandfather played at Harvard ... Played against fellow NU signee Jack DiNardo.