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Four-star Galion, Ohio athlete Dareian Watkins has been moving closer to a decision since early spring. This past weekend the 6-foot-2, 195-pound prospect determined which school he will attend, and announced his commitment on Monday.
Watkins' decision comes on the heels of an unofficial visit to Northwestern this past weekend. The trip solidified his decision to be a Wildcat.
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"Saturday night a little after midnight he texted me, 'dad I know where I want to go,'" Watkins' father, Heath, said. "Dareian felt a strong connection with his future teammates. As he got to know the kids he was surprised that he couldn't tell who was a walk-on and who was on scholarship because they all treat each other the same. Dareian is a humble kid and he felt he found the same type people."
Other schools that were contending down the stretch included Indiana, Illinois, Michigan State, Wisconsin and Penn State, but the Wildcats outlasted their Big Ten brethren for the four-star prospect's commitment.
"We have stressed to Dareian that we will support any choice he makes 100%," Heath Watkins said. "The only thing we asked was that he choose a 'life path' instead of just choosing a football team. We feel very strongly that he accomplished that with his choice."
The No. 19 ranked athlete in the country, Watkins could project to several positions in college including wide receiver, quarterback or safety. Northwestern is looking to utilize his talents possibly at several positions when he arrives in Evanston.
"They plan to use him in the slot but it's possible he could play QB in the wildcat," Heath Watkins said. "I think they like the versatility that he can catch it, run it or pass it. He takes pride in his physical style of blocking downfield. Blocking is a team skill and he strives to be a good teammate."
For Northwestern, Watkins is commitment No. 7 in the 2014 class and the second four-star, joining Wheaton (Ill.) North quarterback Clayton Thorson.