Beth Long’s weekly recruiting roundup

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Preferred walk-on athletes often have the potential of scholarship players, and if they progress, they can be something very special during their collegiate career.

Northwestern’s newest preferred walk-on J.B. Butler fits that mold. Wthin inches of scholarship offers and in need of senior film, an untimely injury kept Butler from getting scholarship offers. 

“The injury really put a damper on my senior season, but it taught me that I have the ability to adapt and find different ways to succeed,” Butler said. “I also learned that good technique is very important because it gives you advantages when you’re playing not at 100-percent.” 

But now, he’s exactly where he wanted to be, at Northwestern. As for the WIldcats, they were one of several schools that were vying for Butler to be a preferred walk-on, but earned his commitment for several reasons.

“What really made me choose Northwestern was the great education and the ability to achieve one of my dreams as a kid of playing in the Big Ten,” Butler said. “It was just a great fit for me.” 

Westphal to enroll early four-star cornerback Parrker Westphal has made his college decision. Westphal will graduate early from Bolingbrook and enroll in Northwestern in January. 

“They are one of the best academic schools in the nation, so that sticks out a lot,” Westphal said. “I have been talking about wanting to be a coach, and coach Pat Fitzgerald has been talking to me about the majors that they have for that.” 

Connolly adds first

After a big senior season for Mount Carmel, linebacker Sam Connolly is starting to get some recruiting interest. 

“It’s going good, recruiting has definitely picked up since the season ended,” Connolly said. “It’s been pretty crazy around Mount Carmel lately.” 

In fact, Northern Colorado is the first school to get on the board and offer Connolly. 

“I like that they offered me, they watched my film and offered me kind of out of no where,” Connolly said. “I am going to visit in January though. 

“I have officials to Northern Illinois and Iowa, but I am not sure what date I will be going on them, sometime in January also I believe.”

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