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College Sports

Big Ten gridiron: local football talent gears up for 2013 season

Former local high school standouts are ready to suit up for Big Ten football teams.

Jack Allen

Big Ten title foremost goal for Michigan State's Jack Allen

College: Michigan State

High school: Hinsdale Central

Class: Sophomore

Position: Offensive lineman

Splitting time between left guard and center last season, Allen started 12 contests and played in all 13 of the Spartans’ games as a redshirt freshman, anchoring an offensive line that helped produce 149.4 rushing yards a game in 2012. Named to the Big Ten Conference all-freshman team, Allen also was named a first-team freshman All-American by the Football Writers Association of American as well as the Sporting News. He is the No. 1 right guard on the Spartans’ depth chart heading into preseason camp.

Doug Diedrick

College: Northwestern

High school: Montini (Woodridge)

Class: Sophomore

Position: Superback

An all-state linebacker in high school, Diedrick has transitioned to the other side of the ball in college to become a utility offensive player for Northwestern. After sitting out during a redshirt year in 2011, the Woodridge native saw his first collegiate action last fall and played in two games. He caught one pass for 13 yards against South Dakota State and rushed three times for 12 yards on the year. He could see more action this season in NU’s spread offense.

Reilly O’Toole

College: Illinois

High school: Wheaton Warrenville South

Class: Junior

Position: Quarterback

Sharing the quarterback spot with Nathan Scheelhaase last season, O’Toole played in seven games to Scheelhasse’s 10 but posted better numbers in completion percentage (74.7), touchdowns (six) and efficiency rating (142.7). O’Toole also rushed for a pair of touchdowns and finished second on the team in total offense. Last season, he set the program’s single-game record for completion percentage when he completed 83.9 percent of his passes (26-of-31) against Charleston Southern. As one of the most experienced QBs on the roster, O’Toole once again could see plenty of playing time.

Kyle Prater

College: Northwestern

High school: Proviso West

Class: Junior

Position: Wide receiver

Prater made his NU debut last fall after transferring from USC in the spring of 2012 and added depth to the Wildcats’ already deep receiver corps. Prater saw action in all 13 games last year, catching 10 passes for 54 yards. In his first game at Ryan Field, he caught three passes against Vanderbilt, and he hauled in two passes in the Wildcats’ 34-20 win over Mississippi State in the Gator Bowl. After a full year in the Wildcats’ system, Prater could be poised for a breakout season.

Tommy Schutt

Former Glenbard West star poised for bigger role after solid debut season at Ohio State

College: Ohio State

High school: Glenbard West

Class: Sophomore

Position: Defensive lineman

Schutt, who originally was committed to Penn State University, was an immediate contributor to the Buckeyes as a freshman. Appearing in 10 games, including a start against Central Florida in Week 2, this defensive lineman finished the 2012 season with four tackles. The 6-foot-2, 303-pounder is expected to have an increased role this fall.

Austin Teitsma

College: Illinois

High school: Glenbard South

Class: Junior

Position: Defensive lineman

In his second season playing for the Illini last year after taking a redshirt in 2009, Teitsma played in all 12 games and recorded 15 tackles, including two solo and two tackles for loss. He twice recorded four tackles in a game (against Charleston Southern and Northwestern) and forced a fumble against Northwestern. He also was an academic All-Big Ten honoree. Heading into the 2013 season, Teitsma is the No. 1 defensive tackle on the depth chart.

Mike Trumpy

Former Wheaton North star ready for last hurrah

College: Northwestern

High school: Wheaton North

Class: Senior

Position: Running back

After playing 13 games in his first two seasons after a 2009 redshirt year, a fully healthy Trumpy played in all 13 of Northwestern’s games last season and finished third on the team in rushing with 349 yards and three touchdowns. He also figured into the passing game and caught eight passes last season. The academic All-Big Ten honoree finished sixth on the team in scoring and fourth on the team in total offense. Heading into his final season, Trumpy is expected once again to be a key contributor.

Dan Vitale

College: Northwestern

High school: Wheaton Warrenville South

Class: Sophomore

Position: Superback

One of four true freshmen to crack the lineup in 2012, Vitale played in all 13 of the Wildcats’ games last fall. He caught his first career touchdown pass against Nebraska, had 110 yards receiving in Northwestern’s win at Michigan State, and had seven receptions for 82 yards in the Gator Bowl. After the season, Vitale was named to the Big Ten All-Freshman Team and was the Offensive Newcomer of the Year award recipient. Vitale is at the top of the Wildcats’ depth chart at superback (No. 5 receiver) heading into the season.

Jordan Walsh

College: Iowa

High school: Glenbard West

Class: Sophomore

Position: Offensive lineman

After redshirting in 2011, Walsh played in seven contests last fall for the Hawkeyes, including a start against Northwestern. Playing both left and right guard, the 6-foot-4, 290-pounder also saw time on special teams. A returning letterwinner, Walsh is expected to be in the mix for serious playing time this fall.

Jordan Westerkamp

College: Nebraska

High school: Montini (Lombard)

Class: Redshirt freshman

Position: Wide receiver

After redshirting his first year in Lincoln, Westerkamp will be hoping to earn some playing time this season. He was one of Nebraska’s first commits in 2012 and one of the most heralded talents in that class. The sure-handed wideout isn’t expected to start, but should see time as the No. 4 or 5 wide receiver.

More Big Ten talent:


• Michael Odom, Benet (Naperville), RS freshman, LB

• Alex Pietrzak, Brother Rice (Burr Ridge), sophomore, OL

• Matt Harris, Lyons Township, freshman, WR

• Zack Guritz, Hinsdale South, freshman, OL

• Mark Gorogianis, Montini (Lombard), freshman, WR


• James Nudera, York, sophomore, TE

Changing from QB to tight end boosts York grad's hope of taking field for Illinois

• Aaron Bailey, Bolingbrook, freshman, QB

• Clayton Fejedelem, Lemont, junior, DB

• Nick Forzley, Lemont, junior, DB

Lemont grad Forzley in line to see more time for Illinois football this fall

• Cameron Tucker, Nazareth, sophomore, RB

• Daniel Quintana, St. Joseph (Berwyn), junior, STAR

• Robbie Bain, Bolingbrook, RS freshman, DL

• Scott McDowell, Hinsdale Central, sophomore, OL

• Pat Flavin, Benet (Lisle), sophomore, OL

Pat Flavin ready to play bigger role for Illinois' football team


• Kyle Bosch, St. Francis, freshman, OL

• Brad Anlauf, Hinsdale Central, RS freshman, WR


• Nick Campos, Wheaton Warrenville South, RS freshman, P


• Andrew Harte, Montini (Downers Grove), freshman, K

Andrew Harte aims to be starting kicker for Minnesota football


• Colin Goebel, Naperville North (Lisle), freshman, OL

• Jaleel Johnson, Montini (Lombard), RS freshman, DL


• Grant Ellington, Nazareth (La Grange), Sophomore, LS

Naz grad aims to break through as Purdue long snapper

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