Jordan Thompson Jared Thomas Joe Gaziano Trent Goens Nathan Fox Simba Short John Moten Cameron Green Adam Lemke-Bell Tommy Vitale Montre Hartage Flynn Nagel Charlie Fessler Trae Williams Jelani Roberts Alonzo Mayo Steven Reese Andrew Otterman Lloyd Yates Jacob Murray
Following a relatively quiet offseason, Northwestern's football program will welcome members of its 2015 recruiting class to the program on Feb. 4 for National Signing Day. Even with de-commitments from some of the Wildcats' top targets, Pat Fitzgerald and co. still managed to put together a solid class. As of now, Northwestern's crop of new talent ranks 47th nationally, according to 247 Sports, the same rank they had last year. We'll be putting out player capsules like these in the lead up to National Signing Day so you can learn more about this new bunch of Wildcats.
HOMETOWN: Concord, PA
HIGH SCHOOL: De La Salle
247 COMPOSITE RATING: ★★★ (.8539)
NATIONAL RANK: 791
POSITION RANK: 56
STATE RANK: 93
OTHER OFFERS: Arizona State, Utah and Yale
MORE: 247 Profile | Hudl | Twitter
One of two safeties in Northwestern's 2015 recruiting class, Short committed to NU in May. Short's list of offers wasn't very long, but it included a pair of West Coast powers in Arizona State and Utah. Nonetheless, he selected Northwestern and has kept us up to date with his recruitment via Twitter.
First in home visit with my dude coach McCall! pic.twitter.com/aoPt9XRjzz— Simba Short (@simbashort) December 3, 2014
#NUOfficial this was cool pic.twitter.com/zClbmrSDQ3— Simba Short (@simbashort) January 16, 2015
Media fun! #NUOfficial pic.twitter.com/M3UTzQDGaE— Simba Short (@simbashort) January 17, 2015
While Short is listed as a safety, he also played outside linebacker and wide receiver in high school. He's definitely expected to be on the defensive side of the ball at NU. Short could be another Jimmy Hall type, able to play in both the secondary and linebacking corps. He's already got legitimate size at 6-foot-2 and 210 pounds. A little more time in the weight room and he should be strong enough to be playing linebacker. Short's a speedster for his frame too. His 40 time is 4.55 seconds, according to 247sports, a huge asset in coverage and pursuit.
His speed is apparent in the highlight reel. Short shows off great instincts in sniffing out screen passes and throws into the flat. He also steps up and fills running lanes well, but getting into the backfield won't be such an easy task on the college level.
Northwestern doesn't necessarily have a lot of depth at safety, but they have three solid options in Traveon Henry, Godwin Igwebuike and Kyle Queiro. And Igwebuike and Queiro are both going to be redshirt sophomores in the fall, so if Short stays in the secondary, he likely won't see much of the field for a couple years.
There are a lot of young outside linebackers on NU's roster, but few have got much playing time. It wouldn't be surprising to see Short come in and compete with them, but unless the linebacking corps is depleted by injury, expect Short to get a redshirt in his freshman season. The coaching staff will take some time to see how he develops physically. Then, after a year a two, they'll select a permanent position for Short, where he should become a key contributor.