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Someone to Watch: Proviso West Junior Makes Panther History

Proviso West's Kyle Prater has a 3.2 G.P.A. He stands about six feet four inches tall and carries a small stapled stack of papers in his wallet. The papers are worn and folded, filled with words of wisdom and quotes that remind him to stay focused and work hard. He also carries a note in his wallet from his mother reminding him to stay humble and keep God first. His Mom, Sonya Prater, gave him the note knowing that her son is in the spotlight in high school football recruiting arenas, and in Proviso West High School.

Prater, a 204-pound wide receiver, has received offers from every Big Ten school in the country including: Penn State, Purdue, Northwestern, Michigan State, Notre Dame, Cincinnati and Arizona. But Prater made Panther History when he received his 17th offer from Stanford University. Never before has Stanford University offered a scholarship to a Proviso West student for athletics.

One sports recruiting analyst said Prater is the real deal. He has a shot at emerging as the No. 1 player in the class of 2010 in Illinois.

Prater says though he's excited about being heavily recruited, he has to stay humble and focused.

"I thank god for giving me the ability to do what I do," said Prater. "I just keep cherishing it, and keep putting in the work."

Prater's mother says she's excited about her son's success, but his football stardom isn't what she's most proud of.

"I am very humbled by what's happening with my son and we're excited," said Mrs. Prater. But what I am most proud of is my son's character. His outlook is no attitude, no ego, and no excuses when it comes to football, his team mates, and academics."

Prater says he hopes his efforts will open the door for him, his family, and the entire Proviso West football team. He plans to make his college selection next year.

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