Princeton’s Noah LaPorte commits to Northwestern

Tigers all-state tight end says Wildcats ‘cared about me’

Princeton senior all-state tight end Noah LaPorte has committed to play football for Northwest University. The Wildcats were the first team to offer. LaPorte will be the fourth Princeton player sign to play at the Division I level and the second to the Big Ten in two years.

On a day he went out fishing for the big one, Princeton’s Noah LaPorte proved to be the catch of the day for Northwestern University.

The 6-foot-6 senior tight end from Princeton, who was a Class 3A all-state selection last season, committed to play football for the Wildcats, he announced Thursday morning.

Northwestern was the first school to make an offer to LaPorte, on April 20, which left a lasting impression.

“The thing that played the biggest role was them showing how much they cared about me,” LaPorte said. “All of the coaches would text me, and the TE coach Paul Creighton would call me every day or every other day seeing how I’m doing.

“They have a very close bond, education, and they play in the Big Ten. Can’t ask for much more.”

LaPorte also received offers from Michigan State, Kansas, Kent State, Ball State, Ohio and Eastern Illinois. He also made multiple trips to Illinois, as recently as last week.

Princeton senior Noah LaPorte was named IHSFCA Class 3A All-State and unanimous Three Rivers East All-Conference.

LaPorte will be the fourth Princeton player to sign to play at the Division I level and the second to the Big Ten, following 2023 grad Teegan Davis (Iowa) and 2024 grads Bennett Williams (Air Force) and Payne Miller (Western Illinois).

He is the 17th Tiger to sign to play collegiately since Ryan Pearson took over as head coach in 2017.

“I’m just happy for Noah. This whole process has been pretty hectic and stressful at times, but awesome it all worked out in the end,” Pearson said. “Having a player in our program that gets the opportunity to go play the game he loves and get a free education from Northwestern, it really doesn’t get any better than that.

“I’m truly happy for Noah and his family. What an opportunity.”

LaPorte is the third Bureau County player to go to the Big Ten in two years, including Hall’s Mac Resetich to Illinois last year.

A menacing blocker who made 34 catches for an area-best 517 yards and eight TDs last season, LaPorte was named as a Bureau County Republican co-Player of the Year and a unanimous All-Three Rivers East Conference selection in addition to his all-state recognition.

It was also a good day fishing for LaPorte, who caught four smallmouths, and teammates Ace Christiansen and Casey Etheridge, each landing a good catch or two.