Home > Illinois football > Montini recruit Westerkamp fond of Memorial Stadium

Montini recruit Westerkamp fond of Memorial Stadium

CHAMPAIGN – Jordan Westerkamp paced the east sideline during Illinois’ spring practice Friday morning at Memorial Stadium and couldn’t escape the fond memories he’s already had on that FieldTurf.

The Lombard Montini junior caught touchdowns in both endzones – three total – during November’s 34-21 Class 5A championship victory over Chatham Glenwood. As a sophomore, Westerkamp caught a touchdown pass and watched older brother Christian catch the game-winning two-point conversion of a 29-28 state title win over powerhouse Joliet Catholic.

“I’m 2-0 here so far, so it’s great. I love this field,” Jordan Westerkamp said during an unofficial visit to Illinois. “I love that we get the chance to play here. Two years in a row, now. Hopefully the third year, we’ll be back.”

The Illini coaches hope the 6-foot-2, 190-pound senior-to-be will spend four seasons playing home games at Memorial Stadium like his father, Bob – an Illini receiver in the ’80s – did.

But Ron Zook and his staff will have plenty of competition as Westerkamp’s resume – 140 catches for 2,787 yards and 39 touchdowns over the last two seasons – has resulted in 16 scholarship offers, including offers from Illinois, Boston College, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan State, Minnesota, Nebraska and Northwestern.

The Montini star – who so far has visited Illinois, Indiana, Purdue, Wisconsin, Michigan State and Northwestern – may put some miles on the family vehicle in the next few months. He wants to visit each school that has offered.

“It’s really going to come down to where I fit in best, if it’s east coast, west coast, wherever that is,” Westerkamp said. “In-state would be great because it’s close, but it’s really going to be wherever I fit in the most.”

Westerkamp said his father hasn’t put any increased pressure to play at his alma mater.

“It’s always cool that my dad played back here in the 80s, but he tries to tell me that he’s not going to force me to come here,” Westerkamp said. “He wants me to make the best decision for myself because I’m going to be the one at the school for the four or five years. But he wouldn’t hate if I come here.”

Westerkamp followed in his dad’s footsteps to Montini. His father played for Broncos head coach Chris Andriano, a 31-year steward of the head coach’s office at Montini.

“We’ve had a Westerkamp at Montini since like ’76 or something,” Westerkamp said.

Westerkamp went to dinner with Zook on Thursday and spent most of Friday morning’s practice focused on the wide receiver drills run by offensive coordinator Paul Petrino.

“At first I thought (Petrino) was just this calm guy,” Westerkamp said. “Then I see him in meetings and on the field and he’s a fiery guy. But I like that. I like his coaching. He makes his players better.

“Our practices aren’t like that. This is the college level. It’s a whole new level, but it was great to see that.”

Westerkamp could participate in Petrino’s drills as early as next spring or summer. The Illini coaches may know his answer within a few months. Westerkamp said he will whittle down his list this summer and make a verbal commitment before the fall so he can focus on ensuring at least one more prep game at Memorial Stadium.

“I really want to try to get it over before my football season starts,” Westerkamp said. “We’re back-to-back champs, and I want to try to get that third one.”

 

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