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Northwestern football Signing Day profiles 2016: SS Travis Whillock

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Whillock's ability to tackle and read offenses will add depth to Northwestern's secondary.

Photo: YouTube | MaxPreps

QUICK HITS

POSITION: Safety
HEIGHT: 6-1
WEIGHT: 185
HOMETOWN: Katy, TX
HIGH SCHOOL: Katy
247 COMPOSITE RATING: ★★★ (.8220)
NATIONAL RANK: 1552
POSITION RANK: 100
STATE RANK: 176
OTHER OFFERS: Boston College, Houston, Kansas, Nevada, Texas State, Tulane, Utah State and Wisconsin.
MORE: 247 Profile | Hudl | Twitter

BACKGROUND

Travis Whillock is a proven winner who will add significant depth to Northwestern’s already solid defense. The safety won the Texas 6A Division II State Championship in 2015 in his senior season with Katy. Just two days after Katy's 34-7 championship win over Lake Travis, MaxPreps named the Tigers the National Champions. They went 16-0 behind a defense that recorded 10 shutouts and forced 26 turnovers. Whillock was the top interceptor for the team, who, on average, allowed only 3.875 points per game.

Whillock, a 6-foot-1, 185-pound safety, possesses more than just athleticism. He played with discipline on the defensive side of the ball, something that Northwestern coach Pat Fitzgerald has to like. His ability to read offenses and quarterbacks was one of the reasons Katy had the best defense in the country. Another reason was his teammate and future Wildcat Paddy Fisher. Whillock announced his commitment to Northwestern less than an hour after Fisher, Katy’s leading tackler, did.

OUTLOOK

Whillock's ability to play strong or free safety and his tackling capabilities will make him an asset to Northwestern’s defense. With starter Godwin Igwebuike returning for his junior season, Kyle Queiro likely stepping in alongside him in place of Traveon Henry, and Jared McGee, Jacob Murray, Steven Reese and Trae Williams all returning, Whillock will almost surely redshirt.

He'll then likely find himself in a battle for a backup role as a redshirt freshman, and should be a solid special teams contributor as an underclassman. Once Queiro and Igwebuike graduate though, there will be a lot of question marks at safety. Whillock seems like a decent candidate to step up and claim one of the starting spots as either a redshirt sophomore or junior.