football Edit

Northwestern intrigues Texas LB Bernard

There are three Houstonians on Northwestern’s 2016 roster, three more will be joining them when freshmen show up in the summer, and there are already two in the Wildcats' Class of 2017.

Assistant coach Randy Bates is again busy down in Clutch City, trying to pluck three-star Terrel Bernard out of La Porte (Texas) and add him to his linebacker corps.

Bates has been recruiting the 6-foot-1, 205-pound outside backer since September and offered him a scholarship in January. Bernard says he is intrigued by the Wildcats and wants to visit the campus over the summer.

“It’s a really good academics school and they play good football,” said Bernard, the No. 100 prospect in the Lone Star state.

As a linebacker, he is also impressed by Northwestern’s coaching staff. His recruiter, Bates, would also be his position coach. And Bernard likes the fact that head coach Pat Fitzgerald was a two-time national defensive player of the year as a linebacker for the Wildcats.

“It shows me that he knows what it takes to produce,” said Bernard, who got to meet Fitzgerald when the coach visited La Porte during the evaluation period. “He’s been where I’m trying to be.”

Northwestern, in turn, likes Bernard for his speed and ability to play in space, key skills for playing the weakside linebacker position.

“My strength is in pass coverage and my knowledge of the game overall,” he said.

That knowledge of the game will come in handy in the future. Bernard, who carries a 4.46 GPA (on a 5.0 scale) at La Porte, plans to be a football coach once his playing career is over.

Bernard now has 15 schools on his offer list and doesn’t have any favorites yet. He has thus far visited a handful of Texas schools: Baylor, Houston, Texas and TCU. He hasn’t set a date yet, but Bernard plans to visit Northwestern in June or July.

“Obviously, I’m looking for an education that will help me after graduation, a place where I feel like I fit in, and a place where I can have a relationship with coaches on and off the field,” he said.

And Evanston’s distance from La Porte won’t play a role in his decision process.

“I’ve lived at home all my life,” he said with a laugh. “Maybe it’s time for a change.”

Bernard is aiming to make his verbal commitment at some point over the summer.