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May 3, 2013Tommy Doles knows how to start his Twitter account with a bang.
"For my first 'tweet' I'd like to say that I officially committed to play football at Northwestern University!" the three-star tackle from Grand Rapids (Mich.) Christian announced Friday night.
Chances are that Doles' future tweets will not be quite as newsworthy.
Doles chose Northwestern over four other offers -- most notably Michigan -- to become the sixth member of Northwestern's Class of 2014 and its first offensive lineman. (Fellow commit Ben Oxley is listed as an offensive tackle by Rivals but will start his career as a defensive tackle for the Wildcats.)
Doles picked up his offer from Northwestern in early March, while on an unofficial visit. He said then that the school's academics are what stood out the most.
"Academics are the big thing with me, and obviously Northwestern has that," said the student who carries a 3.91 GPA at Grand Rapids Christian.
He also felt, however, that NU's appeal extended beyond the classroom, and he had positive remarks about head coach Pat Fitzgerald, the campus ("it's just beautiful, right next to Chicago"), Northwestern's practice ("it's high tempo and intense, and they look like they have a lot of fun") and offensive line coach Adam Cushing ("he seems like a great coach and a great guy").
Doles' pledge comes as a bit of a surprise only because he had previously said that Michigan, the first school to offer him a scholarship and a campus he visited several times, was his leader. But the Wolverines have already accepted verbal commitments from two tackles in their class, presumably making Doles' decision easier.
At 6-foot-5 and 240 pounds, Doles is a natural athlete with the frame to add the weight he will need to play in the trenches in the Big Ten.
Stay logged onto WildcatReport for more on Doles' commitment.