Big Ten Signing Day: No love for Northwestern in rankings

Big Ten Signing Day: No love for Northwestern in rankings
February 6, 2014, 6:15 pm
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Vinnie Duber

There are few days as frantic as National Signing Day. And sometimes it can be a difficult enough task to try and keep up with news of one team, let alone 12 of them.

Well, now that all the Signing Day hubbub has died down, it’s a good time to take a look at what happened in the Big Ten. How did the teams do? Who are the big-name recruits coming to the conference next season? And how happy were the coaches with their respective hauls? We’ve broken it down, team-by-team.

Northwestern Wildcats

(Rivals rankings: 10th Big Ten, 69th nationally)

The Rivals rankings weren’t too kind to the Cats despite what’s being viewed as an excellent class for Pat Fitzgerald. Headlining the group are three local four-star players: Wheaton North quarterback Clayton Thorson, Glenbard North running back Justin Jackson and Bolingbrook defensive back Parrker Westphal. There’s a fourth four-star player in there, too, throwing a great deal of excitement but also a big load of expectations on this year’s class.

[MORE: Northwestern's local haul boosts 'Chicago's Big Ten Team']

Recruits in Rivals 250:

136. Clayton Thorson, four-star quarterback (Wheaton, Ill.)
156. Justin Jackson, four-star running back (Carol Stream, Ill.)
234. Parrker Westphal, four-star defensive back (Bolingbrook, Ill.)

Coach speak: “As you can see in the class, we felt like we dominated Chicagoland again,” Fitzgerald said. “We felt like we went out and we hard-targeted the men that we felt fit our program. And to see the young men that have joined our program and the backbone of our roster, which is always going to be Chicagoland, we’re excited about those guys.”