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Article updated: 2/6/2013 2:30 PM

Northwestern adds 19 in signing class


Northwestern added a pair of highly ranked players to its offense Wednesday as part of its 2013 recruiting class.

Both the Rivals.com and Scout.com recruiting services give quarterback Matt Alviti of Maine South High School four stars. And Scout.com considers running back Godwin Igwebuike from Pickerington North High School in Pickerington, Ohio, a four-star recruit, too.

"We as a staff are confident we've signed a group of young men who are tremendous fits for our program athletically, academically and socially," coach Pat Fitzgerald said. "These 21 individuals are joining a program with a lot of momentum and I look forward to the contributions they'll make toward helping us achieve our goals in years to come."

Northwestern finished last season 10-3 (including 5-3 in the Big Ten, third in the six-team Legends Division). The Wildcats beat Mississippi State 34-20 in the Gator Bowl.

Rivals.com considers Northwestern's class the ninth best in the 12-member Big Ten and 52nd in the country. Scout.com ranks the Wildcats' class eighth in the Big Ten and No. 45 in the country. Ohio State is considered No. 1 in the conference by both recruiting services.

Alviti is a dual-threat quarterback who had 9,750 passing yards in high school and 2,040 rushing yards. The 6-foot, 185-pounder threw for 85 touchdowns and ran for 43.

Northwestern returns last season's starting quarterback, senior Kain Colter, who was an honorable mention All-Big Ten player as a junior.

Igwebuike has 1,985 rushing yards as a high school senior and 29 touchdowns. The 6-foot, 190-pound back was also a talented safety.

Other highly regarded members of the signing class include offensive lineman Sam Coverdale, a 6-6, 265-pound tackle from Kenston High School in Chagrin Falls, Ohio.

The class includes 10 offensive players, eight defenders and one special teams player. Five of Northwestern's recruits are from Illinois and five more from Ohio.

The Wildcats' class includes two other running backs, 6-0, 180-pound Warren Long from James Logan High School in Union City, Calif., and Xavier Menifield, a 5-10, 190-pound back from Sierra Canyon High School in Valencia, Calif.

The `Cats added only two other linemen, one on each side of the ball: 6-3, 250-pound offensive lineman Blake King from Minooka High School in Shorewood, Ill., and defensive tackle Eric Joraskie, a 6-4, 260-pounder from Mount Carmel (Pa.) High School.

Northwestern's recruiting class:

Matt Alviti, qb, 6-0, 185, Maine South HS, Park Ridge, Ill.

Sam Coverdale, ot, 6-6,265, Kenston HS, Chagrin Falls, Ohio

Tom Fuessel, wr, 6-4, 185, Lincoln-Way East HS,Mokena, Ill.

Matthew Harris, cb, 5-11, 180, Lyons HS, La Grange Highlands, Ill.

Godwin Igwebuike, rb, 6-0, 190, Pickerington North HS, Pickerington, Ohio

Eric Joraskie, dt, 6-4, 260, Mount Carmel (Pa.) HS

Blake King, ol, 6-3, 250, Minooka HS, Shorewood, Ill.

Tyler Lancaster, dt, 6-3, 275, Plainfield East HS, Romeoville, Ill.

Warren Long, rb, 6-0, 180, James Logan HS, Union City, Calif.

Marcus McShepard, cb, 5-11, 185, Cleveland Heights HS, University Heights, Ohio

Xavier Menifield, rb, 5-10, 190, Sierra Canyon HS, Valencia, Calif.

Hunter Niswander, p/pk, 6-5, 210, Woodridge HS, Peninsula, Ohio.

Brad North, ol, 6-2, 280, Allen (Texas) HS

Kyle Queiro, wr/db, 6-3, 190, Bergen Catholic HS, Verona, N.J.

Jayme Taylor, te, 6-4, 225, The Woodlands (Texas) HS

Anthony Walker, lb, 6-1, 200, Monsignor Edward Pace HS, Miami, Fla.

Brett Walsh, lb, 6-1, 205, Monrovia (Calif.) HS

Keith Watkins II, cb, 5-11, 170, Archbishop Moeller HS, Cincinnati, Ohio

Macan Wilson, wr, 6-0, 185, Kinkaid HS, Houston, Texas

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