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July 9, 2009Finally, it is confirmed that outside linebacker Chi Chi Ariguzo committed to Northwestern to become the Wildcats' long-awaited sixth commitment.
WildcatReport first reported the commitment -- believed to have occurred shortly after Ariguzo's unofficial visit on the weekend of June 26 -- on The Rock message board more than two weeks ago but had not been unable to confirm it with the player or his high school coach.
Ariguzo's commitment was reported by ESPN.com this morning.
The prospect from Columbus (Ohio) DeSales chose Northwestern over offers from Wisconsin, Minnesota, Illinois, Stanford, West Virginia and Kansas, among others.
Ariguzo played strong safety for DeSales last season but will play outside linebacker for Northwestern. Wildcat coaches think that the versatile athlete has the skills to play both the run and pass, keys to defending against the spread offenses that have proliferated throughout the Big Ten.
"I can cover people, and I can tackle them if I have to," Ariguzo told WildcatReport in May. "They (coaches) like the way I play in space."
He certainly fits the mold of other outside linebackers the Wildcats have recruited in recent years. Quentin Davie, Ben Johnson and Roderick Goodlow are tall, fast and rangy players on the current roster at that position.
Ariguzo was a teammate of incoming freshman defensive end Davon Custis at DeSales. Together, the pair helped lead the Stallions to a 13-1 record in 2008.
Northwestern is also recruiting DeSales Class of 2010 offensive lineman Travis Jackson.
Ariguzo becomes the second outside linebacker in Northwestern's six-member class, joining Collin Ellis of Baton Rouge (La.) Dunham. A source says that the Wildcats have met their quota for linebackers for this year's class and are no longer recruiting the position.
Stay logged on to WildcatReport for more on Ariguzo's commitment.