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Northwestern Football Recruiting: National Signing Day 2018 Primer

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What should you expect from the traditional signing day? Not a ton!

NCAA Football: Music Bowl-Kentucky vs Northwestern Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

The Northwestern Wildcats will finalize their 2018 recruiting class on Wednesday, college football’s National Signing Day.

As always, this won’t be a big, dramatic day for Northwestern like it will be for the recruiting powerhouses that will have blue-chippers choosing between their hats on ESPNU all day. But unlike previous years, today will be even less eventful for Pat Fitzgerald and his staff. That’s because they already signed 16 players — nearly a full class — to NLIs back on December 20, the first day of the newly-instituted Early Signing Period.

However, there are a couple things going on today for the Wildcats. They’ll be signing two players for sure: three-star OL Sam Stovall and three-star CB AJ Hampton, both of whom Fitz flipped from other programs that they elected not to sign with in December. Stovall, a 6-foot-4 tackle from Chattanooga, TN, had pledged to Western Kentucky but got a Northwestern offer the day before the Early Signing Period began and committed in mid-January after visiting Evanston. Hampton, a Toledo commit from Florida who also held a Nebraska offer, flipped to NU last week.

The more interesting thing is that the Wildcats are still in the running for another cornerback prospect, high three-star DJ Brown. Brown was a Virginia commit but didn’t sign, and after taking official visits to Cal, Northwestern, and Notre Dame, he decommitted from UVA and will choose from that trio today. According to WildcatReport, Brown will announce his decision at 10:30 a.m. CT. Notre Dame is definitely the favorite, but anything is possible.

Brown would immediately become the second-best recruit in Northwestern’s 2018 class, going by 247’s composite ratings.

Fitz won’t have a formal press conference, but he will be talking to the media at 1 p.m. and we’ll have a story from that at some point.

As a refresher, here’s a full list of Northwestern’s class of 2018. Here’s how 247’s composite sees the class. And here’s Inside NU’s interview with Fitz from early signing day.