Story URL: http://news.medill.northwestern.edu/chicago/news.aspx?id=93775
Story Retrieval Date: 4/18/2014 1:22:45 PM CST
You win a high school football state championship as an offensive lineman. You have a slew of scholarships to play football at various colleges. What do you do?
If you are Dan Osterhout, you opt for the road less traveled.
At 6 feet 2 inches and 260 pounds Osterhout was an imposing force as an offensive lineman on Carmel (Mundelein) High School’s 2003 state championship football team.
He had scholarship offers from multiple schools including Drake University, Grand Valley State University and Valparaiso.
But he chose Georgetown and academics instead.
“I thought that with a Georgetown degree, it would set me up later in life that no matter what I do, I could pay it back,” Osterhout said.
Osterhout said his parents were very supportive of his decision.
“That’s an awesome choice,” said Michael Fitzgibbons, former head football coach, former assistant football coach and director of campus ministry at Carmel High School, recalling his reaction to hearing about Osterhout’s decision. “That’s a great school.”
“You can’t pass up a Georgetown education, you just can’t,” said Maureen Osterhout, Dan’s mother.
High school students are impressionable and it would be understandable if one got caught up in the excitement of recruiting, especially after winning the state championship.
But Osterhout stayed focused and grounded during the entire experience.
“It was an unbelievable feeling,” Osterhout said of winning the state championship. “It is still the best moment of my life to-date right now.”
“This is a very talented group of kids and he was the best,” said Fitzgibbons, while speaking about the offensive line on the state championship team.
However, when it came time to make the decision, Osterhout and his parents were on the same page.
“Georgetown’s reputation is outstanding, you can’t get much better,” Maureen Osterhout said.
Georgetown does not give football scholarships, but that did not deter Osterhout or his family. He decided to attend Georgetown and play football on his own dime.
Osterhout is majoring in operation and management in the business school. He just finished his fourth year at Georgetown and is on schedule to graduate in May 2009. He is spending the summer interning at the John Hancock Insurance Co., in Downers Grove.
“I am hoping this goes well and they’ll be able to offer me a job,” Osterhout said.
“I am extremely happy,” Osterhout said of his decision to attend Georgetown. “Even football, we only had 10 wins over four years. And I could have gone elsewhere to win conference titles and even make the playoffs, but I am extremely happy.”
As Osterhout enters his fifth year, he is out of football eligibility. However, he plans to be an assistant coach working with the offensive line this season. Osterhout said coaching may be something he is interested in doing professionally down the line.
So Dan Osterhout may still end up with a future in football after all. However, he has options outside of football thanks to his hard work and a degree from Georgetown.
Osterhout said, “It’s just going to set me up for the rest of my life.”
“Some kids get it, some kids don’t,” said Fitzgibbons.”He gets it.”