Thursday, January 04, 2007

Chicago Sun Times: California is Cattouse's choice

(Thanks to Daniel for sending me this)


Hubbard star likely to play DB in college

January 4, 2007


Sean Cattouse received the Christmas present he wished for -- to be with his family. And his New Year's wish was granted, too. On Tuesday, he made an oral commitment to California.  Cattouse is one of seven Hubbard football players who will sign Division I scholarships next month. The 6-3, 195-pound quarterback/ defensive back chose California over Northwestern and Minnesota.  ''I made official visits to all three schools, and I felt best at California,'' he said. ''It's a big-time program. I loved the coaches. And I'll get a chance to play early. They have a need at cornerback. I never imagined it would be like this. It's an honor for a school like California to extend an opportunity like this to me.'' Teammate Robert Hughes said he will announce his college choice -- Illinois or Notre Dame -- at the U.S. Army All-American Bowl on Saturday in San Antonio. Five other Greyhounds made earlier commitments -- Darius Purcell to Illinois, Keith Otis to Northern Illinois, Justin Hickman to New Mexico, Jordan Brown to Miami (Ohio) and Brian Thomas to Morgan State. Cattouse is an excellent student. He has a 3.2 grade-point average on a 4.0 scale and scored 23 on his ACT. He plans to major in education and wants to teach high school math. ''I like to help people,'' he said. ''I feel I can get through to a lot of kids my age. I can give them life lessons. I can tell them, 'When things get hard, don't quit.' I've been lucky. I've gotten a lot of support from family, friends and coaches. Some people don't.''

Unlike many young athletes, Cattouse is serious about academics. He understands that not too many are qualified to be recruited by California. And the odds are slim of making it to the NFL. He wants a chance to compete in college football, but he knows there are no guarantees. ''When I was a freshman, I saw a lot of guys who were messed up academically and didn't get scholarships,'' he said. ''So I got serious about academics. My mother stressed it. I knew I had to do it. I never came home with bad grades. I feel good about what I've achieved.'' Most schools recruited Cattouse as a defensive back and some as a receiver, but he groomed himself to be a quarterback. He was determined to convince his critics by working hard before his senior season. He also attended Charlie Bliss' quarterback/ receiver camp at Maine South. ''I improved my decision-making and leadership skills,'' he said. ''If coaches look at the Simeon and Morgan Park game films, they'll see how I was able to make plays, how I improvised when plays broke down, how I scrambled and completed touchdown passes rather than running all the time.'' CSTV recruiting analyst Tom Lemming, who thinks Cattouse is best suited to be a receiver in college, said he is one of the best athletes to come out of the Public League in recent years. ''He will be an impact player at free safety,'' Lemming said.


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