||More Sports||Sign up||School Finder|
Wheaton North quarterback Clayton Thorson brushes off Glenbard North's Alex Smith. | Patrick Gleason ~ For Sun-Times Media
For more of Beth Long's recruiting coverage, go to recruiting.scout.com.
Committing to Northwestern was a decision that Wheaton North junior quarterback Clayton Thorson had thought about for quite some time.
“My parents and I had been discussing it the past week,” Thorson said. “And then, Sunday night I told coach Pat Fitzgerald that I was going to commit. I called him and told [him] that I wanted to commit to play football for him for the next four or five years.
‘‘He was obviously excited and he told me what being a Northwestern commit meant, and he told me to keep being the person I am and he would honor my commitment.”
Overall, there were plenty of reasons Thorson selected the Wildcats.
“It’s one of the best schools in the country, education-wise, and growing up in the western suburbs it is close to home,” Thorson said. “It is important my family can come see me play and I want to be part of what coach Fitzgerald is doing at Northwestern. I felt comfortable with the coaches and I just want to be a part of that.”
The connection with current Wildcats Dan Vitale and Mike Trumpy, both from Wheaton, helped too.
“I actually saw Dan Vitale on my trip a few weeks ago, and my dad is really good friends with Mike Trumpy’s dad and my brother played with him at Wheaton North,” Thorson said. “It was nice to talk to them about the process, they gave me a little more information on coach Fitzgerald, and they said he was a great guy.”
Allegretti Chooses Illini
Another area standout, Lincoln Way-East offensive lineman Nick Allegretti pledged his verbal commitment to Illinois.
“I had originally decided that I wanted to commit this summer, but it got to the point that I was tired of reading though the lines and I was having to decide who was genuinely interested,’’ Allegretti said. ‘‘I got to the point that I wanted to make a decision. There were three schools that I considered: Indiana, Illinois and Northern Illinois.”
Allegretti chose Illinois for several big reasons, including a family factor.
“Illinois just outweighed the other schools because my brother is there and I would like to go to school with him,” Alegretti said. “He will be there four more years because he is going to get his masters there. So I will be there with him for three years. Plus, I know that coach Tim Beckman knows what he is doing. He has won a lot each place he has coached. I think his philosophy is great.”
Westphal Adds Offers
Three new offers came in for Bolingbrook’s Parrker Westphal over the last week. Arizona State, Minnesota and Vanderbilt reached out to the junior defensive back. The catch is, several were already on the table.
“I was talking to Arizona State and the coach said he wanted me to come down and visit,” Westphal said. “And I told them that I wasn’t really visiting schools that hadn’t offered and he told me I already had an offer.
‘‘I was somewhat shocked and excited it’s always nice to get a new offer.”
Less than 12 hours later, Westphal clarified an offer from Vanderbilt, then added a new offer from Minnesota.