Northwestern recruiting 2013: Justin Jackson headlines Wildcats' class

Byron Hetzler-USA TODAY Sports

The Wildcats don't have a huge class assembled for 2014 just yet, but they have picked up several verbals from blue-chip players.

Northwestern has a 13-member recruiting class that ranks 41st nationally, according to the 247Sports composite, and sixth within the Big Ten. But the Wildcats also have one of the smaller classes in the league at this point, which is a factor in where they stand.

Northwestern has not picked up a commitment since July, when three-star linebacker Noah Westerfield came on board. Here's a glance at a few of the top names in the Wildcats' class:

Carol Stream (Ill.) Glenbard North High School's Justin Jackson was part of a big May for the Wildcats. Jackson is a consensus four-star all-purpose running back prospect who is considered to be the third-best player at his position and the sixth-best player from Illinois. He is ranked 184th overall.

Clayton Thorson, who hails from Wheaton (Ill.) Wheaton North High School, is a four-star pro-style quarterback prospect. Like Jackson, he's a top-10 prospect in the state. He's also regarded as the 13th-best pro-style QB in the country and the No. 251 overall player.

Dareian Watkins is a four-star athlete from Galion (Ohio) Galion High School who could potentially play quarterback or wide receiver at the college level. He is the No. 263 overall prospect in the nation, and one of the top 20 players from Ohio.

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