Thorson Continues NU-Wheaton Connection

One of the top 2014 quarterbacks in the Midwest, Clayton Thorson of Wheaton North (Ill.) picked Northwestern Sunday.

It was something that Clayton Thorson had been thinking about for the last week, and Sunday decided to go ahead and commit to Northwestern.

"My parents and I had been discussing it the past week," Thorson said. "And then Sunday night I told coach Fitzgerald that I was going to commit."

He added, "I called him and told them that I wanted to commit to play football for him for the next four or five years."

Fitzgerald's reaction was one that Thorson could definitely appreciate.

"He was obviously excited and he told me what being a Northwestern commit meant," Thorson said. "And he told me to keep being the person I am and he would honor my commitment."

There were several factors that played into Thorson's decision, and near the top of his list were the Wildcat's academics.

"Academics are definitely important to me, and Northwestern is one of the best schools in the country," Thorson said. "Some guys tend to forget that you need to go to a school that will prepare you for the rest of your life and a Northwestern degree means so much so that was a big draw for me."

Another thing that the 6-foot-4, 200 pound prospect liked about the Wildcats was the tradition at quarterback.

"Coach McCall does a great job with the quarterbacks, obviously with Kafka, Persa, Colter and Simeon," Thorson said. "And I think Northwestern's offense is a good fit for me, plus we run a similar offense at Wheaton North."

Thorson isn't the first connection between Wheaton and the Wildcats, current Wildcat's Dan Vitale and Mike Trumpy both attended schools in the area, and gave some pretty valuable advice to the junior standout.

"I actually stayed with Dan Vitale overnight 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."

Plus, Trumpy had some other words of advice for Thorson.

"Trumpy said he got hurt several times while he was there and they stuck with him and they were by his side to pick him up," Thorson said. "He said he stayed there because he felt like they could prepare him for the next years of his life, so that was pretty cool."

Now that Thorson is on board for Northwestern, he looks forward to helping make the class of 2014 better, by recruiting others.

"I definitely am looking forward to talking to some guys and letting them know why I committed and hopefully my commitment can answer some of their questions," Thorson said. "I feel like Northwestern is the best school for me and I want to relate that to the other guys, and also I want to be a part of what Coach Fitzgerald is doing and win Big Ten Championships and eventually National Championships."

Northwestern had a very successful season in 2012, and that helped Thorson place the Wildcats at the top of his list.

"Success is definitely part of my decision, the momentum is great but I am also committed to the school and program, I am just thrilled," Thorson said.

Thorson told his family Sunday afternoon that he had made up his mind, and they were pretty excited too.

"They were all thrilled because I will be close to home and they can come see me play, and they are thrilled just that I picked northwestern and that was the best fit," Thorson said.

Overall, Thorson summed up exactly why he chose Northwestern.

"Its 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."

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