Northwestern hosted several top prospects from the 2012 and 2013 classes for their night game with Michigan on Saturday. Brownsburg, Ind., athlete Chase Dutra was one of the 2013 athletes in attendance.
"That was my first time being up that way," Dutra noted. "I had been to Chicago, but never past Chicago and it was my first time on Northwestern's campus. I liked the campus, the coaches were nice, the facilities - I liked it all. It was a smaller field, but I liked how all the fans got into it."
Dutra has kept in steady contact with the Northwestern staff this fall, and had a chance to meet them in-person for the first time on Saturday.
"I talked to Coach [Dennis] Springer and he just pretty much told me to keep sending them more highlight film," Dutra said. "They said they liked what I am doing and to keep doing what I am doing. They don't have a specific position they like me at, they just like me as an athlete."
Most college coaches are like Northwesterna and see Dutra as an athlete. Knowing that, Dutra watched how Northwestern utilized sophomore Venric Mark, who lined up on offense, defense and returned kicks Saturday for the Wildcats - all duties Dutra could potentially perform in college.
"That actually who I was watching a lot," Dutra said. "He really impressed me with what he did, and I really liked how they used him on offense, defense and special teams. I like how they will play you on both sides of the ball if you are good enough."
Dutra made a previous visit this fall to Ball State, and has standing invitations from several more schools to check out games this fall.
"There are a couple teams that want me to come out for their games - Iowa, Boston College, Cincinnati," Dutra said. "Georgia Tech I am pretty sure wants me to come down for their Thursday night game against Virginia Tech. Iowa State has been really hard on me and wants me to come down when I have an open date. I just have to set the dates up."
Brownsburg will play for their league title this weekend before entering the playoffs. Dutra had to play the first few games of his junior season with a cast on his arm after breaking it while dunking a basketball over the summer, but he is back to 100 percent entering the post-season.
"I've had the cast off for about three or four weeks," Dutra said. "The first game back I wanted to make sure I didn't do anything stupid and break it again right away, but it just feels great to have it back and do everything I can do with my hands."