Premier class of 2017 Junior College defensive tackle Dermel Bonaparte revealed to Talking Baws exclusively last week that if Northern Illinois were to extend him a scholarship offer, he would commit and attend the University.
When asked why NIU hadn’t offered him already, Bonaparte responded, “Because I don’t have a 2.5 [Grade Point Average].”
He told me he currently plans on attending NIU, saying, “Yes, I will attend if they offer next semester.”
Bonaparte further added, “Signing day for me is between February and late March, and right now if my grades [hold up], I will attend NIU.”
The Monroe College sophomore currently holds offers from Northwestern Oklahoma State, South Nazarene, Texas-Permian Basin, Chowan, Lincoln, UVA-Wise, and Moorehouse College.
Bonaparte said that along with Northern Illinois, Buffalo is also interested in him.
The 6’1,” 295-pounder has taken unofficial visits to Buffalo, Ohio State, Georgia, Virginia Tech, and Moorehouse.
“[The offer is] not definite yet, and NIU has other guys that they are looking at and they are December graduates, so if they don’t go there, it will look good for me when I go on my visit in March,” Bonaparte told me.
He named Defensive Line coach Brett Diersen as the member of the Northern Illinois staff who has primarily recruited him. Diersen was also involved in the recruitment of Bonaparte’s teammate, fellow lineman Gerron Pendarvis.
Since 2014, Bonaparte has been with a multitude of junior colleges, including Independence Community College for the 2014-15 season, Globe Tech for the 2015-16 season, and Monroe College during the current season.
He remarked that his decisions to leave Independence CC and Globe Tech were for different, non-academic reasons and that he’s just ready to move on to play in Division I.
“I just want the Division I experience for real, and I feel like I can help out on defense too.”
Dermel Bonaparte had ten combined tackles with 3.5 coming for a loss and 2.5 sacks in seven games for the Monroe Mustangs during the 2016 season.
Northern Illinois University’s 2017 recruiting class is currently ranked 88th nationally and fifth in the Mid-American Conference, but that ranking could be boosted with a commitment from Bonaparte, the number seven Junior College defensive tackle in the nation.