Jeffersonville High School football coach Alonzo Browning hoped signing day proved something to kids over in Southern Indiana. The Red Devils had three players sign with colleges on Wednesday, including two to preferred walk-on offers at area schools in Power Five conferences.
Browning said linebacker Danya Overton, who accepted an offer as a preferred walk-on with Louisville; quarterback Cam Northern, who accepted an offer as a preferred walk-on with Purdue; and offensive lineman Ian Francisco, who received a partial scholarship from Kentucky Wesleyan, have now set a standard for the program.
“You don’t have to go to Trinity,” he said. “You don’t have to go anywhere. You can get it here, but you got to put in the work.”
A lifelong Louisville fan, Overton jumped at the chance to play college ball right across the river, especially after the season the Cardinals posted last year in the Atlantic Coast Conference. He was also considering an offer he received from Indianapolis.
“I saw it as a chance to get on campus and prove to them that I’m worthy of a scholarship,” Overton said.
Northern built a relationship with new Purdue coach Jeff Brohm while he was the coach at Western Kentucky. While West Lafayette is about an hour further away than WKU, it’s in-state, which made it easier for Northern to attend as a walk-on and learn from both Brohm and the coach’s brother, Brian, both of whom played in the NFL.
“Their quarterbacks have always thrown for a ridiculous amount of numbers,” said Northern, who chose Purdue over offers from Morehead State, Division II and NAIA schools.
Francisco earned offers from such schools as Georgetown College, Franklin and Thomas More. However, after his visit to the Division II school in Owensboro, he told the other schools about his choice.
“Everything about it just felt like I fit in well,” Francisco said. “All the coaches, I just meshed with them really well, and it just felt like it was the best place for me to be.”
Local trio signs on with UIndy
Gavin Bane of Brownstown and Brendan Lawler and Shane Phillips of Charlestown signed letters of intent Wednesday to further their football careers at the University of Indianapolis.
Mid-Southern Conference foes, Bane and Lawler spearheaded their respective teams’ offenses this past season. Bane totaled 1,694 rushing yards, 742 receiving yards and 41 total touchdowns, 31 rushing, for the regional champion Braves this past season. Lawler, slated to play defensive back on the next level, accounted for 1,213 passing yards, 1001 rushing yards and 22 total touchdowns at quarterback for the Pirates.
In addition, West Washington lineman Jackson Byrne signed with Indiana State. Floyd Central girls soccer players Gracie Fitzgerald and Samantha Sears signed to play at Centre College and Campbellsville University, respectively.