Friday, May 6, 2011
Jordan Westerkamp to Nebraska
By Scott Powers ESPNChicago.com
Montini junior wide receiver Jordan Westerkamp has committed to Nebraska.
Jordan Westerkamp had seven receptions for 146 yards and three touchdowns in Montini's state championship game.
Westerkamp, 6-foot-2 and 190 pounds, chose Nebraska over Arizona, Boston College, Cincinnati, Illinois, Iowa, Michigan State, Northern Illinois, Northwestern and West Virginia, among others.
"It was just the total package," Westerkamp said. "It had everything -- coaches, academics, football program, people. I loved it. It's just a lot of relief. I'm just glad I'm done. I know Nebraska is the right place for me."
With his recruitment out of the way, Westerkamp has turned his attention to helping Montini win a third consecutive state championship.
"I'm still a Bronco for one more year," Westerkamp said. "I'm not going to get a big head. I'm going to focus hard and get that third ring."
Jordan's father Bob wanted to make sure his son didn't rush into a decision.
"When we took his trip down there, he got a really good look at the whole overall picture academically and athletically," Bob said. "He came away that weekend and felt, 'I really love this place.' I said we're not going to jump into the boat right away. Let's see some other schools. We went on 3-5 other visits. After he went to Michigan State this past weekend, he said, 'I think it's Nebraska. I feel like I really want to go there.'
"They have a new offensive coordinator and are starting to run the spread there. That was very appealing to him being a receiver."
Westerkamp caught 89 passes for 1,631 yards and 21 touchdowns as a junior. In Montini's Class 5A state victory last season, he had seven receptions for 146 yards and three touchdowns.
"He's about as complete of a high school receiver as you're going to find," Montini coach Chris Andriano said. "He does everything, including blocking. He's very strong at catching the ball, great route running. He's got a great vertical jump, and he can take balls away from defenders. Every part of the game is solid for him."
Bob Westerkamp, who also coaches at Montini, played wide receiver at Illinois, but he never tried to sway his son there.
"To me, it was never really a factor," Bob said. "I felt I shouldn't put any undue burden on him. It's already a hard enough decision to make. We went down [to Illinois] a couple times, but I definitely let him make the final decision.
"To see all the hard work he's done with his brothers in the garage, in the weight room working hard to the culmination of this to become a Nebraska Cornhusker, it puts tears in my eyes, his mom as well. We're overwhelmed with it."
Westerkamp's commitment was significant not only for him and his family, but also Montini's football program.
"I'm not used to having kids every year like this," Andriano said. "It's huge because it's such a high-profile program. Anytime something special like this happens, you're happy for the kid. Other schools are coming through, and other kids are getting looked at. It's a win-win."
Scott Powers covers high school and college sports for ESPNChicago.com and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.