"If anyone beats that benchmark, then they're new at the top of my list," Coverdale said. "If no one beats Northwestern, it's an easy no-brainer."
Northwestern took the lead for Coverdale after his two visits, which solidified a positive feeling about the football program.
"They're at the top of my list, I really like them a lot," said Coverdale of Northwestern. "I've been up there twice; like the coaching staff and players."
"I talk to Coach Fitz once a week, and same with Coach Cushing," Coverdale said. "I really like both of them and they like me too."
With Northwestern set as his early favorite, Coverdale is looking to see how other schools compare. However, he feels confident in the Wildcats being his leader.
"I feel like I have a complete view of what Northwestern has," the tackle said. "They're my benchmark right now. I compare (every other school) back to Northwestern."
Coverdale is prepared to look at each option, with a commitment currently planned for the summer's end.