Marcus Outlow took a leap of faith when he gave a verbal commitment almost a year ago to Boston College.
Steve Addazio had been on the job as the head football coach for a little over two months when Outlow committed. The Eagles also finished 2-10 in 2012, their second straight losing season.
Outlow's faith paid off. Boston College righted itself and had a winning season, and Addazio believes that Outlow can contribute immediately. The Norwich Free Academy running back sent Boston College his letter of intent on Wednesday.
"It's crazy," Outlow said. "It was a huge risk in the sense that I really didn't know what to expect (when I committed), but I believed in what they were saying and decided to see how things unfolded. It worked out great."
ESPN ranked Outlow as the state's top recruit, and he received offers from UConn, Clemson and Ohio State. He had 131 carries for 983 yards and 17 touchdowns last fall and helped lead NFA to its second straight CIAC Class LL playoff berth. The Wildcats reached the 2012 Class LL final, just the second state title appearance in state history.
Outlow was one of three running backs among the Eagles' 30 signees. The other two backs were Jon Hilliman (Saint Peter's Prep, Plainfield, N.J.) and Richard Wilson (Detroit Country Day, Southfield, Mich.).
"We're talking about two big-time backs (Hilliman and Outlow), and I anticipate them playing right away," Addazio said during a media teleconference Wednesday. "My mindset is to play this class. Does that mean everyone will play right away? No, but I want to play this class. .... (These are) two guys who are dynamic players, both big running backs.
"We're still going to maintain a big, physical presence even though we'll have a little more of a spread component attached to us. We're not going lose our identity as a big, physical team but we'll be able to do it in a few different ways and add a bit of an option to the game. These guys are coming in to carry that rock and they'll be able to do that."
Outlow was supposed to sign his letter of intent during a ceremony at the school Wednesday. School was postponed due to inclement weather, and the ceremony will be held at 10 a.m. today.