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Northwestern Signing Day 2014 Player Capsules: Auston Anderson

The basics
School: Plano West (TX)
Position: RB
Height/Weight: 5-foot-9/180 pounds
Stars: 3
Other offers: Arizona, Arizona State, Arkansas, Baylor, Nebraska, Stanford, TCU, Texas, Texas Tech, UCLA, Washington, others
247 Profile
Twitter: @noweenies23 

What you should know

Some of Northwestern’s 2014 commits chose the Wildcats over a number of impressive offers. Anderson is one of them. The 5-foot-9, 180-pound back turned down Arizona, Baylor, Stanford, Washington and Texas, among other schools. Anderson narrowed his list to Northwestern and Stanford and later picked the Wildcats because he thought he fit better in their spread offense than the Cardinal’s pro-style attack.

When Anderson visited Northwestern last April, running backs coach Matt MacPherson spliced together tape of Venric Mark from college and Anderson from high school, so the latter could visualize himself making the same plays as the former at the next level. Like Mark, Anderson is a short, speedy back (he says he ran a 4.44 in the 40-yd dash) who can break big plays.

Were Mark not returning in 2014, Anderson probably might have had a good chance to play as a true freshman. It makes more sense for him to redshirt this season, learn under Mark and enter the fold in 2015. Anderson is a talented back, but Northwestern has a lot of capable options returning at his position – including Mark, Treyvon Green, Stephen Buckley and Warren Long. The Wildcats don’t need Anderson right away.

Quotable

“I wanted to be a part of that next wave of players that can really make an impact here,” Anderson told InsideNU last May. “This could be a special class.”