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.
POSITION: Weak Side Defensive End
HOMETOWN: Chino, CA
HIGH SCHOOL: Chino Hills
247 COMPOSITE RATING: ★★★ (.8590)
NATIONAL RANK: 666
POSITION RANK: 31
STATE RANK: 79
OTHER OFFERS: Washington, Boise State, Miami (Fla.), California, Arizona, Nevada, Utah State, Yale, Washington State and Colorado.
MORE: 247 Profile | Hudl | Twitter
Trent Goens become the sixth recruit of the 2015 class when he announced he was coming to Evanston in April. The 6-foot-3, 245-pound California native chose Northwestern over Washington, among other teams because "it was the perfect fit to be honest. The connections and the degree itself are prestigious. There are only a handful of degrees in the country that are equivalent to it," he told 247 Sports. Goens racked up 67 tackles and 12 sacks playing from the weak side his senior season.
As his highlight reel shows, Goens has an explosive first step and an effective swim move. He has to bulk up a bit, but his athleticism and quickness will translate well at the college level. He adds much-needed defensive end depth to a Northwestern team that has struggled to get to the quarterback in recent years, especially now that strong-side DE Zach Allen has de-committed for Boston College, leaving Goens and Joe Gaziano as the only DE recruits left in the 2015 class.
With Deonte Gibson, Dean Lowry, Ifeadi Odenigbo and Xavier Washington all returning, it’s unlikely Goens will see any action his freshmen season. He's a little under-sized for his position so the year off would give him some time to put on more muscle and adjust to the frigid Midwest temperatures (remember, he's from California). Goens has a better chance to play in 2016, especially now that Allen is out of the picture. But he'll still likely have to beat out Gaziano to get significant playing time sophomore year.