Houghton to play center for Army

Mike Houghton of Mt. Prospect, Ill., started receiving attention from Army in the spring of his junior year. The 6-foot-4, 243-pound offensive lineman wanted close to a year for an offer to be extended but when it was it didn't take him long to jump on it and become part of the Black Knights class of 2013. Houghton discussed with ArmySports.com what led to his decision to attend West Point.

"Coach Waugh contacted my head coach and said they loved my film," Houghton explained. "He came to the school and talked to me about the football program and what the Academy has to offer. As a player, he said they thought I'd be a good fit in the offense at center. They loved my motor and that I didn't give up on plays. He said he thought I was quick enough for the offense they run.

"I never took an official visit to West Point, but I did take an unofficial visit last summer. They offered me officially the first week in February. It was really an opportunity I just couldn't pass up. It was something I wanted to try. I love what they do offensively. They're always one of the top rushing teams which I think will be perfect for a lineman like myself that likes to get down and dirty."

Houghton was a two-way player at Prospect in his senior season. In addition to center, he played defensive end and was named Defensive Player of the Year in the Mid-Suburban East Conference with 94 tackles and 14 sacks. After football, Houghton played power forward on the basketball team and was named All-Conference and All-Area. This spring he's readying himself to go into USMAPS this summer.

"I'm trying to gain weight before I go in," he said. "My first year I just want to get a feel for West Point and the football program. I want to gain a good understanding of the offense and know it inside and out. Next year is just going to be about preparing myself the best I can to move forward on to the Academy."

Houghton said he's an A/B student at Prospect High School in the Chicago metro area. On National Signing Day, Houghton and four of his Knight teammates signed with Division I and Division II college programs.

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